Top three tips to harness the positive

According to The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, stress and anxiety is estimated to affect well over 19 million Americans and growing.

Believe it or not, your stress flows directly from your thought life.  Any time you perceive a situation as a potential threat to your safety or connection with others, your stress hormones begin to soar.  Your thoughts form your choices, how you respond to the world around you. Your choices form your life.

The world is full of endless solutions; it is simply your perceptions that limit your ability to tune into available options. You might be missing vital pieces of information that you delete or distort because they do not fit with the structure of reality you have created for yourself throughout your lifetime. The problem comes when you think these impoverished views of reality are real representations of life.

For example: if you have created a structure that is based on this belief – “Nothing ever works out for me!” – then know that you will tune into everything that validates that belief.  Your thoughts create what you tune into so choose wisely.  You are not a victim in this process unless you choose to be. 

There is actually a part of your brain that tunes into what you focus on in life: The reticular activating system (RAS) is located in the brain stem and plays a major role in behavioral motivation.  It is very empowering to know that you can choose how you want to view circumstances at work and at home: as a burden to be endured or an opportunity for learning and growth.

Take a moment to reflect on Henry Ford’s famous quote: “Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.” 

Below are three tips to help you gain control over negative stress producing thoughts:

  • Practice acuity.  Start to observe those statements or responses to life that perhaps are impoverished and do not serve your sense of well being and inner peace.  Become curious as to what pieces of information you might be deleting that if recovered would help to expand your options in life.  The more options you can create, the less stress you will experience.
  • Remove universal quantifiers in life that keep you stressed out and stuck in a set belief system that does not flow with the growth of life around you: Nothing ever works out for me; nobody cares; everyone is against me; I never get noticed or appreciated; everyone gets acknowledged over me.
  • Use your RAS (reticular activating system) to help you tune into the positive in life. Focus on what is working out for you versus what is not.  You are in charge of your thoughts; your thoughts are not in charge of you.  Seek out positive connections with those around you.  Gratitude along with consistent sincerity and reverence for all of life will guide you back to inner peace every time you choose them over fear, doubt and worry. Replace a sense of entitlement with a desire to encourage those around you. If you want to experience more support on the job then seek out opportunities to be supportive to those around you. You reap what you sow.