By Corey Lewis, CPT, CSCS
In the midst of one of the hardest years in all of our lives up to this point, we were able to grow and serve you, the 1AND1 Life Community, in new and exciting ways. Thank you to all of the readers, customers, and group members new and old for being a part of our vision. As we grow the brand in 2021, our focus will be to continue bringing immense value to you through our content, products, strategic partnerships and an improved web experience on desktop and mobile.
We always suggest that you remain positive throughout your life. This is so important when times are tough, especially now when we all must come to terms with the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ll stay mindful of these things as we develop new content for the coming year, to help you on this new journey.
When the world that we live in is suffering in every way, it isn’t easy to stay positive. We are surrounded by death and despair, which is bound to take a toll on our mental health. This can make us pessimistic about life, and it takes every cell in your body to remain positive in such challenging times.
Most of the virus updates are regarding the challenging times we live in. We hear about how the virus is affecting us, the tanking economy, businesses shutting down, and people getting sick and dying. It is easy to get lost in all of the negativity surrounding us. During these times, optimism might not be the friend of even the strongest ones among us.
However, it is crucial for all of us to not let the gloom take over our lives. We need to cut through the noise about the deadly virus and focus on those things that impact our lives and safety directly. It is safe to say that too much of anything could be dangerous. We’re planning out next year’s articles, videos, and other content with this in mind. In the meantime, try these techniques to stay positive through the holiday season.
Many of us have become used to starting our days with the news to learn more about the world and especially the novel coronavirus. It’s a fact that each time you refresh your browser, there is a news article documenting the amount of fatality at the hands of the disease. While it is good to stay educated and informed, you should not be spending every waking minute catching up on the news. Instead, you should spend time doing other things, and include positive news sources that help you feel better about the world around you. The same goes for social media. Replace some of that negativity with the positive content you’ll find on the 1AND1 Life Youtube and Instagram channels, as well as our new Off the Cuff series with Danny LoPriore. And, if you want to say hi to the team, then check out the 1AND1 Life private Facebook community. You’ll find that communities like these are a great alternative to fighting with friends, family, and strangers about divisive topics.
Many of us have an abundance of time since we are skipping the commute and working from home, and/or dealing with not being able to do as much due to lockdowns and ordinances in response to COVID-19. If you’re like many people, then you probably spend some hours working, and many hours lying on the couch in front of the television. Not a good idea! Now is the time to work on the hobby you have been neglecting because of a hectic work schedule. Work on yourself and do the things that make you immensely happy. Most of the time, we neglect ourselves, our well-being, and our health, and this lockdown can only worsen the situation. Realize that this is a time of crisis, not a vacation. So if you make enough time to indulge in an old or new hobby, that is exceptionally amazing. Still, it is also great if you spend that time taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally. Take care of yourself, educate yourself on new topics, and invest in yourself every day. The more you grow, the more you will believe in yourself and your ability to do great things, big and small.
It’s ok to tip the pizza delivery guy a little extra who, even in a pandemic, delivers hot and fresh pizza to your doorstep. Write a thank-you note to your neighbor or friend who is a healthcare worker that spends hours at the hospital taking care of their patients. Offer food to homeless people when you get a chance, and maybe even help them find a shelter. You don’t have to be a millionaire or billionaire to pay it forward. Just be kind to others in whichever ways work best for you.
Many people in Italy sang songs to honor healthcare workers for their bravery—you can mobilize your community to do something similar. If you live in a building with a concierge who keeps you comfortable and safe, then take a few minutes to say hi and wish them well. Be grateful to the essential workers who are working every day regardless of their age and health. Be the person everyone looks at for inspiration to be kind to others and help them. Be someone that people look up to and make sure you become the person you’d want to look up to.
Trying to remain positive when your life is falling apart, and you are faced by challenges one after another can be difficult and distressing and perhaps impossible. In such times, don’t give in to pressure and anxiety. Transform that anger and despair into positive energy, or reach out to your friends and family for help if you need it.
Positive thinking does not mean burying your negative emotions and thoughts, or avoiding the problems in your life. Remember, the lowest moments in our lives are often the ones that are life-changing and motivate us to be the best versions of ourselves. So, stay positive, especially when you feel like the world is against you.
When going through a challenging time, try to view yourself as a friend who needs advice and some help. What would you say or do to make their day better? Of course, you would acknowledge your friend’s feelings and remind them that they’re not alone. Do the same for yourself. Be kind to yourself and assure yourself that you will surpass the negativity and overcome every obstacle.
Understand that positive thinking is not a magic potion, and it won’t make all your problems disappear. However, it will provide you with a perspective to see all your issues in a new light and make them more manageable.
You can achieve positive thinking through numerous techniques that have been proven successful over the years. Some of these include positive self-talk and optimistic visualization. Here are some tips that I’m sure will help you train yourself to think positively.
Difficult situations, disappointments, and obstacles are a part of life. When life throws a problem at you, focus on the good and the positive regardless of how small or insignificant it may seem. If you actively seek it, you can always find the silver lining in every grey cloud, even if it’s not apparent at first. For instance, if your friends or family cancels plans with you, think about all the free time you now have. Use that time for one of your hobbies, or to work on your other relationships.
Exercising gratitude in your everyday life has proven to reduce stress, increase self-esteem, and resilience in every challenge that you may face. Think of friends, family, moments, or things that bring you joy or comfort and express your gratitude once a day. You can create a gratitude journal and write down all the things you are grateful for. This could include thanking a co-worker for assisting with a project, your mother for washing your laundry, or your pet for the unconditional love they bestow upon you.
Research shows that writing the things you are thankful for can improve your positivity and notion of well-being. Maintaining a gratitude or mental health journal is easy. You jot down a list of things you are grateful for every day, especially when you are having a bad day. This will help you reflect on all the good things that you have in life when you’re feeling low.
Recent studies showed that laughter and sharing a laugh with another person reduces stress, anxiety, depression, and other health problems. It also develops coping skills, mood, and overall self-esteem.
To invite positivity in your life, you should allow some humor in your life and give yourself a chance to feel the utmost happiness. A good joke, an old memory, will instantly lighten your mood and make things a little less complicated. Even if you’re going through a tough time, forcing or pretending to laugh can significantly improve your mood and reduce tension. If you want to take it a step further, then try laughter yoga—I’m not joking!
Surprisingly both negativity and positivity are contagious. Take a good account of the people you interact with daily. Have you noticed how someone in a bad mood can also make you feel low, and someone filled with excitement and happiness immediately lifts your mood?
That’s what the 1AND1 Life team does for each other. We encourage a positive work environment, and that drives the content, products, and services we bring to you. When you spend time with positive people, you give your self-esteem a boost and increase your chances of accomplishing your goals. We promise you that surrounding yourself with positive people will only elevate your mood and positive mindset.
We, humans, are strange beings. We often punish ourselves and be hard on ourselves for not being good enough or for not being able to achieve something. We are our own worst critics. This habit can cause you to develop negative opinions about yourself that could be hard to let go of in the long term. To prevent this from happening, you’ll need a stronger voice inside your head that motivates you and responds to your negativity with complimentary messages, commonly known as positive self-talk or affirmations.
Studies suggest that even a small change in the way you consider yourself or talk to yourself can influence your ability to manage your emotions, thoughts, and actions when inflicted with stress. Here is an example of some positive self-talk that you can use to work in your favor ‘I failed this time, but it’s okay, next time I’ll try a different technique.’
Evaluate yourself and different aspects of your life and find out the ones that cause more negativity in your life. If you’re not sure, ask a friend, and they’ll help offer some insight. For example, a co-worker may notice you acting negatively at your workplace. Or, your partner may see you getting really negative when driving. Confront one negative area at a time. If you try to tackle all of your problems at once, your anxiety may prevent you from solving any of them.
Affirmations are short sentences that you use to lift your mood and help stay positive throughout. Repeating affirmations to yourself each morning is similar to starting your day with a ritual that uplifts your spirit and day. Here are a few affirmations that you can use daily to feel good about yourself:
This process could also include doing things that make you happy, such as listening to your favorite songs or sharing your playlist with a friend. Here are a few more actions that will help you to feel good about yourself and make others around you feel good about themselves:
Did you find that helpful? We hope so, and we’ve got more where that came from! Here is some of what you can expect in 2021:
We wish you a warm holiday season and look forward to celebrating the New Year with you in health and wellness!
– Corey Lewis, Thomas Drew and the 1AND1 Life Team