by Anita Haridat, Ph.D.
When most people think about the concept of positive thoughts, there is often a strong connotation associated with a happy and warm feeling. There are also some people that think that positivity is hokey and falsified on many levels. On the surface, positive thinking sounds like a wonderful idea in theory, but in the real world it does not tend to carry the same kind of weight as other terms, such as persistence or work ethic.
Fortunately, many of these seemingly negative views are changing. There have been a plethora of research studies within the past decade that indicate that positive thinking can impact the entire realm of a person’s life. For example, a 2016 study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that people that had more optimism in their lives had a decreased risk of health conditions such as heart disease, cancer, respiratory disease and stroke. The study was done over an eight-year period, and the people in the cohort were directly compared to people that had less optimistic views about life.
It should also be known that negative thoughts can narrow a person’s mind and create limiting options. When there are positive thoughts, along with feelings of contentment and joy, there is a strong allowance to see more possibilities in life, and opportunities tend to broaden.
The idea of positive thinking often requires a certain type of skill set, since it can be easy for humans to get bogged down among the negative factors that take place during daily life. On a personal level, I have included positive thinking in my life through the use of a gratitude journal, meditation, yoga and giving myself permission to pursue adventure. I also listen to podcasts, such as High Vibe Advocate, by Camila Medici. This is a life-coaching channel that is meant to “raise your vibration.” Medici speaks about a wide array of topics, including spirituality, career, life hacks and fitness. With just a few minutes per day, this can change your mindset incredibly!
In today’s world, it is very easy to put off happiness for another time, but the truth is, the time to be happy is right now. Find ways to build positivity into your life, and you’ll find that happiness will be created in more instances than just momentary occurrences. You may also be able to develop skills that can blossom into wonderful opportunities.
Seek positivity, find your happiness, and you’ll be surprised at how your mental state and the rest of your body will transform.
Anita Haridat has her Ph.D. in healthcare management and her master’s degree in clinical nutrition. She currently works at Northwell Health in the corporate Office of Clinical Research. She has a passion for wellness, overall vitality and yoga. Connect with her at AHaridat@Northwell.edu.