The power of positive thinking and creating a vision for life

Motivation and positive thinking

These days, I’m a pretty positive person. I’m a ‘glass half full’, ‘look on the bright side of life’ kinda gal. I truly believe that life is what you make it – if you look for, and focus on, the positives, then that is what life gives you. I wasn’t always like this though. For years I was crippled with depression and self-doubt, I hated myself, had no motivation and no belief that life could be anything other than hard work.

In a final bid 5/6 years ago to be free of depression I started to change the way I thought. I stopped sitting feeling sorry for myself. I stopped only focusing on my negative points. Instead, I started a gratitude diary. Every single night before bed, I made a list of 5 things I was grateful for that day. It was ridiculously hard at first, trying to think of even 5 small things that I was grateful for was far harder than I imagined. But I did it. Every day without fail. Then I started to re-read the lists that I had made at night when I first woke up in the morning so my head was full of happy things.

The more I gave thanks for the good in my life, the more good I noticed. I started to appreciate things more – small gratitude’s like a sunny morning, or a message from a friend. A cup of tea made for me or an extra big hug from one of my kiddos. I discovered just how powerful positive thinking really is. Slowly I began to see that life could be good. Giving thanks for all the good in my life made me realise that life wasn’t so bad – that I had so much love surrounding me, and that I could change my mindset.

“If you can change your mind, you can change your life.”

― William James

I began to read lots about the law of attraction and about creating a vision for your life. We are creatures of habit, and if we spend every day telling ourselves that everything is hard, that we are rubbish/fat/stupid/not clever enough *{or whatever that negative voice in your head tells you} then we begin to believe it. I started training myself to think positive thoughts. I even printed out some affirmations that I stuck around the house where I would see them – on the bathroom mirror, in the cupboard where the tea bags were kept. Every time I saw one, I’d repeat it over and over in my head. I felt a bit daft at first, but slowly even I had to admit it made a difference. The more I told myself I could, the more I found I actually could.

Looking back now, it’s amazing at how different my life is. I’ve been depression free for 5 years {the longest I’ve ever gone}, I’m happy, I’m more confident, I’m following my heart and making a life that I want. I see the world through different eyes. The me of back then would never have thought that I was capable of doing what I do now for a living, she would have said I wasn’t good enough, that everyone else was better than me so what was the point of even trying?

Positive thinking turned my world around, and it’s something that I still practice every day. I love my life, that’s not to say sometimes it’s not hard. Sometimes I’m overwhelmed or run down. But those are the times that I’ve stopped giving thanks, that I’ve stopped focusing on the positives. I find if I start each day by telling myself something along the lines of ‘today is going to be a good day, I’m happy to be awake and I’m ready to start the day’ {as corny as that sounds} it means I start the day in a good frame of mind.

Affirmations really, are simple. They are short, simple statements. They are you being in conscious control of your thoughts. When you say them, read them or hear them, they become your thoughts. Supposedly, 80% of our thoughts each day are negative! Choosing to think positive thoughts through the day really does change your mindset. When I first started changing my life, I made a list of all the things that I wanted out of life. A vision of the life that I wanted to make for myself. Looking at it every day reminded me of what it was I was aiming for, it helped me to make the correct decisions, to keep me focused on my dreams. It gave me a clear image of the life I was striving for, and looking back 5 years later it’s amazing to realise that my visions have pretty much become a reality. I have a lovely home, I have 4 beautiful children, I make a living doing something that I love….

I just had this new vision poster created, I’ve popped it up on my desk in my office, so I can see it whenever I’m working. It’s vision to back up the life that I’ve created, and the life I want to create for me and my family. It’s to remind me of what is most important and to remind me what I’ve striving for. The lovely folk behind ‘Gloment‘ sent it to me, and I’m so pleased with it. They are a great site to go check out to make your own vision poster -they ask you ten questions and then put together a custom poster based on your answers – a constant reminder of your dreams. I’m a huge advocate for creating a vision, I’ve seen just how powerful one can be and truly believe that it can help you live the life that you dream of.

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4 Comments

  1. March 25, 2016 / 14:02

    This is such a good post. It’s a fine line isn’t it between that idea of just being able to ‘cheer yourself up’, which you can’t do, but also acknowledging that you ARE in charge of your own thoughts, and you CAN change them. That doesn’t mean of course that you are suddenly just worry free, but I do agree that when you practice hard, and do it regularly, you start to break those habitual ways of thinking that can be so destructive.

  2. March 26, 2016 / 17:38

    While I have thankfully never struggled with depression, I do try hard to cultivate gratitude. And like you, I really like studying the power of positive thinking. It helps keep me in check, remind me what I need to do in daily practice.
    Your poster is wonderful.

  3. March 28, 2016 / 09:26

    Such a beautiful and positive post Polly…until I had Elsie I was always so chipper and so much more confidence to change and do things to make me appreciate everything and be happy. Life is really tough sometimes and the mind has such a control over how you deal with everything. I could definitely do with taking some of your advice right now. I love the idea behind the poster too- so original and personal I’ll go and check them out now xx

  4. March 28, 2016 / 12:26

    I am so with you, Polly. I think thinking positive thoughts can really help us feel good and affirmations are a brilliant way to help us.

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