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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

How to Stay Positive - Especially, in Difficult Situations

I know sometimes when you're in the darkness, it's hard to find any light. I can't tell you how many times that I've been kicked while I'm down or just feeling down. Sometimes, I feel like there's nothing left to fight for. When you're chronically ill, this isn't a new feeling. Everyone experiences some depression when fighting a long term illness. With Gastroparesis, it comes and goes. I'm going to share some tips I've found online to help you find your way back up to stay positive and to keep fighting.



Thirteen Ways to Stay Positive
by Wikihow - you can click HERE.

According to the article,

1. Examine your situation. What's causing the pain you are feeling? This is going to be key to working your way back to positive territory.

If it's situational—for example, you got fired, it's pouring down rain, and on the way home with all your office belongings in the car, that little spare tire that you've been running on gives up the ghost, leaving you stranded on the other side of town—you're going to need a different set of "positive" tools than if you have been diagnosed with a melanoma.

External factors can be dealt with by taking positive steps to repair or at least address the root problem as best as you can. Whatever the primary cause of the suckage, that cause must be addressed first. You may or may not be able to solve the problem, per se, but at least knowing you're taking positive steps forward is one less weight to have to carry, and it will help you improve your outlook. It will not be easy, of course, or we wouldn't be calling this "sucking."

If it's physical or mental—maybe you're bipolar, or suffer chronic depression—you must balance any attempt at "being positive" with an understanding that the reality is, it's going to be an ongoing battle for your own survival. Because depression will undermine even the strongest of wills, you will need help to maintain—or at least be reminded of—a positive outlook. Counseling, psychotherapy, and the right combination of medication will play a crucial role in helping to keep you from sinking into that very dark place that is the essence of depression. Be patient, but don't look for miracles. It may be that you will need the help of professionals throughout your life to maintain a generally even keel.





2. Don't give in. When you're in the middle of a suck vortex, those words will have little meaning, because everything you know in your bones to be true is telling you that giving in would be so easy to do.

People will tell you "just get over it," or "get a grip." They know—and you know—that if you were to look objectively at the sum of your life, that it's not as bad as it feels; there are many people whose lives are measurably worse than yours. So what! Their lives, no matter how terrible, are not your life, and your situation is unique to you.

Don't try to "get over it." If one could "will away" depression, there would be no need of doctors or drugs. What you can do is understand why you feel like you do, and explain to your would-be counselors that you wish it were that easy, and that you appreciate their concern. Don't push them away—at the very least, you can be positive that they are there for you, however clumsy and unaware their platitudes may be. Who knows, their bumbling efforts may even provide some amusement or distraction!




3. Take care of your body and soul. Given that you are probably an emotional wreck in a world of sewage, swimming in the debris of whatever damage the suckage has wrought, this is not the time to become a world champion hotdog eater, consumer of tubs of ice cream, or finding the bottom of the bottle of Jack. Treat yourself well, even though you feel like hell. How, you ask? Here are some ideas:

Give your pet some love. They know you're not their normal human, but the beauty of pets is unconditional, unquestioning love. Be playful with them, find a simple game that amuses both of you (the fake ball-throw is always a canine favorite), and let yourself forget your troubles for 5 or 10 minutes. It won't solve your problem, but it will lighten the load.

My personal advice is to contact a GP friend - either by phone or on Facebook. Get all of your anger out/frustration/sadness out. The person on the other end of the line understands completely.

Another bit of personal advice I'd like to throw in is to write. Writing has always been my stress outlet and it helps me cope with isolation and sadness.



4. Cut back on the caffeine drinks. You don't need to quit, but cutting back will help reduce chemically induced anxiety and stress, and smooth any recovery time.

Exercise your body. It may be a sport you enjoy, yoga, cross training, or even a simple walk in the park. But keeping your body active will help your outlook.

Throw yourself into a hobby you enjoy. Whether it's art, photography, music appreciation, or building a ship in a bottle, focusing on something other than the suck factor will give your mind some time off for good behavior.

Join a community that you're not already part of. It could be a support group for whatever you're going through, or a group of people that share your love of Lord of the Rings, or a charity such as Habitat for Humanity. You may find solace and purpose in ways you never imagined.

Do not crawl into a hole and disappear. Your friends and loved ones probably know your life sucks. They may or may not be able to help you directly, but they can give you emotional and moral support.

Sleep. You don't need to be told this. Your body is probably begging you for it when you are in the middle of hard times. You may actually be drawn to sleep all day. While that might feel good at the moment, it only puts off the inevitable, so try to maintain good sleeping habits. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule, but allow yourself some leeway. If you sleep fitfully for half the night, then finally fall asleep at 4am, don't get up at 6:30 unless you absolutely must. Let your body get about 8 hours for the best results.




5. Seek help immediately. Yes, life sucks. Sometimes, it can become overwhelming to the point where you figure that swallowing a bottle of pills, or a 9 mm, will be preferable to another day of pain. If those thoughts start to invade your senses, deal with them as if your life depended on it—because it does.

If you're just starting to have those thoughts, speak to your physician or your therapist. They may prescribe something to help steer you back to the center, emotionally. It may be the act of talking about it is therapeutic enough, but don't assume that. Leave that call to the professionals.

If you're at a more advanced stage, thinking about last meals, what to write, how you'll do it, and if anybody will even care (or that this will "teach them a lesson"), stop whatever you 're doing. Pick up a phone. Dial 1-800-273-8255, and tell them what's on your mind.
If your urge is not quite immediate, go to Google, and enter "suicide hotline." The results should include the number above, plus local resources that can help, no matter what the cause.

Note that if your in the end stage of a terminal illness, the above suggestion may be not be the best course. Some countries, and one State in the United States, permits physician-assisted suicide—its purpose to provide for a quiet, controlled departure from this world.


Some Tips:


Remember to laugh. Laughing is a natural way to release tension.

Thinking positively means hanging on to hope and looking for new possibilities at the time when life's gotten too hard. It means striving against its challenges, however extreme. It means hanging on to what is good in yourself if everything else gets swept away and valuing your compassion, your warmth, your capacity to find beauty. There is always the sky, there is always a dewdrop on a weed. Speaking broadly, there is always tomorrow.

When you think positive, positive things do happen, in times of crisis it's hard but remember as hard as it seems the world does not owe us anything. Things happen for a reason. Stay strong, this is just a chapter in your life.

Be positive and active.

If the above fails for you, take the Buddhist view: Life is difficult. The fallacious thought is that we can change that. In accepting that life indeed is difficult, we begin to make it less painful...not less difficult.

To "go for it," simply get up and do it. If there's even the smallest voice inside saying, "Get up!", to do what it says; just dive in! Turn off the computer, turn off the TV, and get going!

When you think positively, you begin to view the world around a little more gently; you tend to look on the better, clearer side. Being resentful will render positive thinking useless.

Find a friend and talk it out. Ask them just to listen. Sometimes telling the situation out loud you hear it from outside your own head and see the situation more clearly. Talk therapy is great.

Leave bad fears in the past,don't let them ruin your future because its your future that your future that counts the most....

Love, forgive yourself. Don't be harsh on yourself.









How to Train Your Brain to Stay Positive - Article can be found by clicking HERE.

According to the article,

You can learn to cultivate resilience by training your brain to stay positive when times are tough.

"People tend to have a cognitive bias toward their failures, and toward negativity," says Matthew Della Porta, a positive psychologist and organizational consultant. Our brains are more likely to seek out negative information and store it more quickly to memory.
Related




Work Positive in a Negative World Work Positive in a Negative World
By Joey Faucette


Of course, that bias is not always bad. Acknowledging problems and facing failures can lead us to better solutions. But too often, we go overboard, and beat ourselves up for our failures or let ourselves dwell in the negative.

By consciously increasing our focus on the positive, we start to even the balance. We find a happy medium where we can address failures and challenges without letting them get us down, leaving us more motivated, productive, and likely to succeed.

Try these three tips to help you train your brain to stay positive:

1. Express gratitude.Negative events loom large unless you consciously balance them out. "When you're faced with challenges, it's important to take stock of what's going well," Della Porta says. Thinking about the good in your life can help balance that bias, giving your brain the extra time it needs to register and remember a positive event.

To help your brain store positive events, reflect on what you're grateful for and why at least once a week. Write down your blessings, such as the opportunity to pursue a career you love or a family that supports you. If you prefer a daily habit, then keep a nightly log of good things that happened that day. "Just keep it very short," Della Porta says. "If you try to hammer [gratitude] home, then it becomes mundane." Day One, a journaling app for Apple devices ($4.99), or OhLife, a free email-based journal, can to help you do this.



2. Repeat positive affirmations. As any politician or advertiser knows, the more often you hear a message, the more likely you are to believe it. The same goes for messages about who you are and what you are capable of doing. By repeating positive affirmations with conviction several times each morning, you are training your brain to believe them. "Over time, you'll start to internalize them," Della Porta says. Repeat your affirmations silently if you feel self-conscious.

Choose two to three affirmations that represent your values and goals, such as 'I can handle whatever comes my way,' 'There is plenty of time,' or 'I’m getting better every day.' The repetition will influence the way you interpret negative events, making you more resilient. "Especially if you're predisposed to negative thinking, this can be extremely effective," Della Porta says.



3. Challenge negative thoughts. Each time a negative thought arises, we choose how to respond. If left to our own devices, we tend to dwell. Our brains home in on negative events so they seem much bigger and more significant than they are. To combat that, start by imagining the thought as separate from yourself, as something you can observe and deconstruct. "Get in the habit of distancing yourself instead of dwelling," Della Porta says.



Next, challenge negative thoughts that are unfairly self-deprecating. For example, if your start up doesn't get the traction you hoped, you might think, "I'm a failure." That's untrue and unproductive. Instead, practice interpreting the same event differently. You might say, I worked really hard but I didn't account for a quirk of the market, so I'm disappointed, but now I’m going to try again with new information. That interpretation is gentler, truer, and more proactive. "At first, [this strategy will] be hard and you’ll think it doesn't work," Della Porta says. "But over time, it'll become automatic and negative thoughts will be less likely to come up. No one does this naturally; you have to learn and practice."

Read more: http://www.entrepreneur.com/blog/225683#ixzz2XLKRcKIx








That leads me into the next article I found:



How to Stay Positive in Challenging Times which you can read by clicking HERE.

According to the article,

Are you having trouble staying in a positive state of mind when challenging circumstances present themselves? The universal laws state: So without, so within. Everything is a mirror. We cannot change the reflection, but we can change the original (ourselves), and then, automatically, the reflection changes.

Here are my top five keys that can help you cultivate not only a positive mindset, but also the feeling state necessary for the positive law of attraction. The more you focus on bringing awareness to accepting and loving yourself, the more your inner beauty and harmony are reflected in your outer circumstances.

1. Relax and Accept - Relax and accept the challenging situation. Don't fight it, because that will make it worse. The more relaxed you are, the more productive you are. Creativity arises out of a relaxed state. And it's creativity that you need to come up with solutions to the situation you are in. Notice that I use the word "situation" and not the word "problem." There is no such thing as a problem, only a situation. When you shift your perspective and see the situation as it is, without negative commentary, then you come up with creative solutions, and/or you find the right person to help you.


2. Watch the Mind- Make a practice of watching the thoughts of the mind with non-judgment and compassion for yourself. It is not the thoughts that are the problem, it is our identification with them that creates stress and anxiety.

For five minutes a day, sit with eyes closed, body relaxed, and observe the thoughts of the mind. You don't have to censor them, or force them to be other than they are, simply observe with non-judgment, and let them pass by.

Over time, you become less identified with the thoughts, and more connected to your creativity, wisdom and clarity.

3. Create Positive Thoughts - A powerful way to undermine the influence of negative thoughts on your wellbeing is to create a practice of saying positive thoughts to yourself. At the beginning, these might seem tedious or silly, but, believe me, it works! The easiest way to break a bad habit of self-judgment and criticism is to create positive phrases that you repeat to yourself as often as possible. Even if you don't really believe them in the beginning, say them anyway! Over time, they become a habit and the negative thoughts simply dissolve.

4. Surround Yourself With Positive People - Be alert to people who like to complain, bad-mouth others, and/or have a depressed outlook on life. Avoid them. Keep yourself in the company of positive thinking people. This is a powerful way to keep yourself in a positive energy field that will lift you rather than bring you down. Your life is not determined by outside circumstances, but rather by how you respond to those outside circumstances.

Remember that all things are possible, there is a lot going on that is unseen to you.

The more you keep yourself on a positive vibrational level, the greater your chances of having positive outcomes to challenging situations.


5. Be Grateful, Laugh, Celebrate - Be grateful for what you have. If things are really bad, be grateful for being able to breathe, get out of bed in the morning, use your legs. Be grateful for the sunrise and sunset, for the beauty of the sky, the trees, the birds and flowers. There is always something to be grateful for. Put your focus there and celebrate what you have. Laughter is a powerful attractor factor. Seek out ways to bring more laughter into your life. You will be amazed at the miracles that occur.

Meditation: Befriending the Mind

Benefits:
When you befriend the mind you are surprised how radically life can change. It becomes much easier to dis-identify from the mind's constant chattering and see yourself, and life's situations, with more clarity and objectivity. You see life's dramas with perspective and compassion, and insights and understandings arise naturally.

Directions:
Find ways to befriend your mind. The mind is our bridge from the subconscious to the conscious, our gateway of expression to the outer world. Be grateful for it. Find ways to appreciate the insights, understandings, and creativity it brings. See it not as an enemy but as a friend.

As this friendship with the mind deepens, your mind no longer disturbs you. You are not fighting it; you are simply letting it's thoughts pass by.The mind and the ego want to make it complicated, but it is not. Life sings a different tune when you are not controlled by the mind. Your natural joy, spontaneity, self-acceptance, love and compassion arise quickly and easily.

There is one other article that I think you should read and it's at Live Your Life Well. It describes tools, much like the articles I've just quoted, that could help you too. Click HERE to read it.

I know it's hard to stay positive, but look inside yourself and find one positive thing that's happened to you today. Mine was that I was able to leave the bed. It seems such a small thing but it's the little victories that make you pick yourself up to keep fighting.










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