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Benefits of Optimism

I spent 22 years in the nursing profession. I enjoy writing, reading historical novels, gardening, and helping people live a healthier life.

Being Happy

Being Happy

Positive Thinking

Thinking about what you want to achieve in life is more accessible when you have a positive attitude. Various psychological tests have shown that people with a positive attitude have shown that their attitudes will help them achieve a better than average life. Optimists have a different way of solving problems and dealing with the world in a way that seems to set them apart from the average person, thus being successful in reaching their goals.

One thing the optimist does is keep their minds on exactly what they want to achieve, and they look for various ways to meet this goal. In addition, they are confident they will reach their goals. Furthermore, they look for the good in any situation, which is obviously difficult at times. When problems arise they tend to look for a positive aspect and a way to solve their problems.

How to Stay Positive

One aspect is that your mind only focuses on one thought at a time, so if you leverage a simple concept, you need to focus on a thought that is uplifting. This will actually use the neural pathway that is created when you establish a new habit. The quality of your life overall is always determined by the way you feel from one minute to the next, so one way to keep everything positive is to use positive affirmations. Psychological positive thinking techniques can help you talk and think about what you want to achieve, and it will keep your mind off of anything that is negative or something that you fear.

If something negative occurs, think “what can I learn from this experience?” Even the words you use to describe an event in your life impacts how you feel. It is so easy to be cheerful when everything is going your way, but we all have times that are difficult, so it comes down to how you want to handle the negative events.

It is possible for your brain to operate in a free-flowing type of feel-good way with positive endorphins, which are feel-good hormones. They make you feel happier and calmer. You will experience a major confidence boost, which will give you confidence and the ability to take on new challenges.

Does Positive Thinking Affect Your Health?

According to numerous medical studies, there is a very strong link between thinking positively and having good health. Studies have also shown that a positive attitude will improve outcomes and in addition, life satisfaction. Other studies have proved that a positive attitude even with medical problems, such as, stroke, traumatic brain injury or brain tumors will improve with a positive attitude.

The University of Kansas study concluded that even fake smiling reduces the heart rate and the blood pressure in stressful circumstances. When you are stuck in traffic or standing in a line try to think of a funny video you have seen, or anything else that makes you feel better.

Just Believe!

Just Believe!

What Does Negative Thinking Do?

A huge study using the death certificates and medical records of 30,000 Chinese-Americans as compared to 400,000 white people were randomly compared. This study revealed the power of negative thinking. They discovered the Chinese-Americans died approximately five years earlier than the white people when they had a combination of disease and a birth year that was considered ill fated by Chinese medicine based on Chinese astrology. This was especially true when the Chinese felt strongly about the Chinese astrology.

The research looked at genetic risk factors, behavior of the patient, the skill of their doctors, the behavior of the patients and other variables, which did not explain them dying at an earlier age. When someone believes the stars hex them, they will die younger.

Another medical study revealed that 79% of medical students report disease symptoms, which were reflective of the illnesses they were studying. Some people believe they will die younger if they think their family members all get cancer or maybe all of the men died young due to a heart attacks. If you focus on the many ways your body can break down, it will ultimately harm you.

Brain Function

Brain Function

Physiological Effects in the Brain

Positive thinking will stimulate the growth of nerve connections, and it will improve your ability to think and analyze situations. It also improves cognition function, while increasing your metal productivity. It will increase attentiveness and in addition, it will increase more positive thoughts.

Several studies have shown that positive thoughts can improve fitness, strength and vision. The quickly growing field of epigenetics has shown that everyone is a product of the things that have happened in their lives, which can change the way the genes function. Genes can be switched off and on based on life experiences, and the genes actually form a feedback loop.

Positive thinking reduces cortisol and increases serotonin, while negative thinking increases cortisol. Negative thinking may also cause poor sleep and cause physical health problems.

Ways to Enhance Positive Thinking

There are several ways to have a more positive attitude, such as:

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  • Surrounding yourself with positive people
  • Use positive music, books, podcasts or books to lift your spirits
  • Be nice and smile at people even when you do not feel like it, people will smile back
  • Try using positive affirmations
  • Focus on the present; do not dwell on problems of the past
  • Have a morning routine, because it can set the tone for the balance of the day
  • Love yourself, and do not solely rely on others to feel okay about yourself
  • Meditation is very helpful to create positive feelings
  • Writing about positive experiences has been shown to increase happiness

In Summary

The evidence seems to be clear that positive thinking will lead to a healthier body and an improved ability to reach your goals. In contrast, negative thinkers pay a price of good health and frustration quite often. At times it is difficult to not let fear rule our bodies, but trying to look for solutions is clearly a healthier lifestyle.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2019 Pamela Oglesby


Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on March 07, 2020:

Hi Peggy,

I agree about joyful people being contagious. Joy does pay off. I appreciate your comments.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on March 06, 2020:

Being around joyful and positive people is contagious. The studies you reported prove that staying positive in one's outlook on life pays.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 23, 2019:

Hi Patricia, I could not agree with you more. I am like you. I have been called "the glass half full girl" also. Being positive feels so much better then misery. So my motto is to trust God and smile. Thanks for sharing Patricia. Angels are headed back to you.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on October 22, 2019:

O yes...I do so agree. Positive thinking is such an important tool for our lives. I do so believe that my daughter's positive outlook has contributed to her years on the planet. The doctors have told her so many times that she needs to be ready to leave the planet But she has kept on being positive. Thank you for sharing this. Hopefully others will find the power of positive thinking. (Some people get a bit annoyed with me because I generally see life through a positive lens. I am even called Pollyanna by some. But it works for me and for us.) Angels are headed your way this evening ps

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on July 17, 2019:

Hi Angel, I am sorry to hear about your job loss, which you obviously could not help. It is hard to stay positive, but I hope you are able to get a new job soon. It seems like tough times and good times come and go. I wish you the best for the future.

Angel Guzman from Joliet, Illinois on July 16, 2019:

I really like your article. I recently had emergency surgery and then lost my job. Its hard to stay positive at times but it is much better to be positive and hope for the best. Great read Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on June 11, 2019:

Gupi, I think yoga and minfulness are excellent ways to keep us grounded. I will check out your articles.

I am glad this article has given you some new ways to continue your positive changes. Most of the time change takes time, so shoot for progress, not perfection. Thanks again for your comments.

Gupi on June 11, 2019:

That is somewhat a little scary for me as I have been a very negative and pessimistic person my whole life. It is something that I am slowly changing. I am slowly starting to feel more positive in day to day life. Thanks for this wonderful perspective and will definitely make full use of this advice. Yoga and mindfulness is something that has helped me. I have some hubs on this subject if you are interested.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 27, 2019:

Hi Genna, Happy people are contageous. I appreciate your comments Genna.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on May 26, 2019:

I have to agree with Life Under -- positive thinking is contagious, and does much to lift our spirits, as your article did for me today. Thank you, Pamela. Hugs.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 25, 2019:

Hi LUC, I like happy endings, and I appreciate your comment.

DragonBallSuper on May 25, 2019:

I like happy and positive-thinking people. It is also contagious - you get into better mood there's just no space for negativity!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 22, 2019:

Hi Ruby, I agree and doing something like meditating in the morning does set the tone for the day. Thanks for commenting.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on May 21, 2019:

Great info on staying positive. I like to meditate. I find if I start the day in a happy mood it lasts all day. It is so easy to let life make one sad...

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 20, 2019:

Yes, I agreed. I sing every day, though I am not a singer. Oh, how uplifting and encouraging music is!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 20, 2019:

Eric, Esperanza sounds very positive. Singing is uplifting for most people and music is great. Love you Eric.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 20, 2019:

Came back. I am playing and trying to sing "Le Chant Des Partisans". And it reminded me to never stop looking for the hope or as here we call Esperanza!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 20, 2019:

Hi Eric, I am so glad this was an uplifting article for you. You are so kind and thoughtful in your comments, and they are appreciated. Gold would work for positive energy in my view.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 20, 2019:

Well you fine Lady just hit a home run out of Wrigley Field. Sometimes I let the world get a hold on me. Great pieces get me up and dusting off. Thanks. What a Great life we have.

Treasures are not gold they are you.

Huge rainbow this morning. My son still swears gold is there. We agreed the gold is our love and positive energy, regardless of green men.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on May 20, 2019:

I'm a firm believer in positive thinking, Pamela. I'm one of those people who always looks for the good, rather than focus on the bad. My dad raised us with three words: positive mental attitude. Whenever we'd get cranky or complain, he'd simply say those three words.

I'm fortunate to come from and be a part of a family who always sees the upside. You reap what you sew. Pretty is as pretty does.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 20, 2019:

Hi Maria, I appreciate your comments, and I think doing things to enhance positive thinking always make anyone happier and able to achieve more in their life. Love, Pam

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on May 19, 2019:

Dear Pamela,

Excellent research on a subject close to my heart. I especially love your suggestions to enhance positive thinking.

Hope you are having a peaceful weekend. Love, Maria

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 19, 2019:

Hi, Pamela, that is well appreciated. And thanks.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 19, 2019:

Hi Miekakagh, Your submission always helps and is appreciated. Have a good week also.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 19, 2019:

That is nice to know. Smiling back at someone is rightly acknowledging a good will. Nothing pays back better than this. Hope this my little submission helps. Thanks.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 19, 2019:

Hi Ms Dora, I thought the fake smile was interesting, but I think when someone smiles back at you it feels good. I am glad your found the article helpful, and I appreciate your comments. Have a blessed day.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on May 18, 2019:

Even a fake smile? Well that makes trying to be positive real easy. Thanks for listing other ways to enhance positive thinking. Very helpful!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 18, 2019:

Hi Brian, I really like the Edgar Cayce way of walking through life. "I hope and expect" cements in that positive view of any event, and I will remember it. Thank you so much for your comments.

Brian Leekley from Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA on May 18, 2019:

Thanks, Pamela, for this good advice and information.

A book that in the 1970s helped me to have a more positive attitude was EDGAR CAYCE'S STORY OF ATTITUDES AND EMOTIONS. I learned that frequently it is just as easy to think of reasons to like as to dislike someone and as easy—and much more likely to be accurate—to assume the best as to assume the worst of a person. And that is just the start of what the book taught me.

A practice that I learned on my own is to replace "I hope" with "I hope and expect". Too often the subtext of "I hope" that such and such will happen is it probably won't happen. Adding "and expect" (when reasonable) puts the focus on a positive outcome. I hope and expect to fit in a shower today. I hope and expect that progressive candidates will sweep the 2020 US elections. I hope and expect that my niece will successfully teach me to sing though it takes me many tries to match a note she plays on the piano. I hope and expect that humanity will rally with eager enthusiasm to solve the problems causing global warming and climate chaos.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 18, 2019:

Hi, Pamela, not at all, please. Enjoy the weekend.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 18, 2019:

Hi Miebakagh, Thank you for your comments.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 18, 2019:

Thank you.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 18, 2019:

Comments flowing is useful and well noted.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 18, 2019:

Jason, I couldn't agree more!

Jason Behm from Cebu, Philippines on May 18, 2019:

Thanks Pam. Let us spread positivity!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 18, 2019:

Hi Jason, I am glad you found the article informative, and I have a feeling you are a positive thinking man. I appreciate your comments.

Jason Behm from Cebu, Philippines on May 18, 2019:

Very informative and helpful article. The tips to stay positive are doable. Nice.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 18, 2019:

Hi Linda, It is hard to maintain a positive attitude at times and see the good in something that is going wrong. I appreciate your comments.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on May 17, 2019:

Maintaining a positive attitude is very important, though it's sometimes hard. Thanks for sharing the information, Pamela.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on May 17, 2019:

Hey, Pamela, positive thinking is a very important force. It affects the mind, body, and soul. Thanks for sharing an informative article that is a good read. Enjoy the weekend.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Pop, You are absolutely right! Thanks for the comment.

breakfastpop on May 17, 2019:

Learning to stay positive is better than any pill on the market!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Kaili, It is not always easy. It requires retraining your brain and even then if we have a more serious problem it is hard. I appreciate your kind comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Mike, Your wife sounds like a real gem. It is true that things have a way of working out, sometimes in ways we least expect. My husband is the worrier in our family also. Thank you so much for your comments.

Kaili Bisson from Canada on May 17, 2019:

Not always easy to remain positive, but doing so truly does benefit us in so many ways, our health included. Great article Pamela!

Readmikenow on May 17, 2019:

Excellent article. My wife if far more positive than myself. I tend to worry and struggle with thinking about the worst. I have learned a lot from her.

Early in our marriage, we had one car for both of us, and it broke down. A new car wasn't in the budget and I was frantic. My wife was calm and said something will come our way.

We were able to get rides to and from work for a few weeks. One day, a relative calls up and says they just want to get rid of one of their vehicles and wanted to know if we knew anyone who needed one. It was a blessing. A nice car that ran well for us for over ten years and cost nothing. My wife was so calm and I felt like crying. She always believes bad times come and they go just as quickly.

Really enjoyed reading this article.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Morning Bill, Yes,thank goodness for your precious wife; it is wonderful in life when we find that one person that changes our perspective. Your comments are appreciated.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on May 17, 2019:

Bev taught me about optimism. My cynicism would run wild if it were not for her, so thank God I found her. Everything you said here is true, by the way.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Clive, You seem like a positive guy with a great imagination. I appreciate your kind words.

Clive Williams from Jamaica on May 17, 2019:

Powerful advice. Positive energy brings positive results.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Patricia, That is how it has worked for me also, and some circumstances didn't change, but my attitude did change to be more positive. It does feel better! I appreciate your wonderful comments. Thank you Patricia. God bless you.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on May 17, 2019:

You are sooooo correct, Pam. From personal experience I can say that positive thinking is how we have climbed so many mountains and traversed the troubled waters that life brings We have found that the feeling we get from thinking in a positive way keeps us uplifted and believing in the wonder of each new day Angels once again are on the way ps

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Lorna, I agree that is not always easy, especially at work if there are difficult people or circumstances. I think training your brain is the key. I appreciate your kind comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Liz, I do remember the song, and I imagine there are numerous other songs that give us that message. Thak you so much for your generous comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi John, Certainly healing quickly and suceeding with your goals makes it worthwhile to have a positive attitude. If one doesn't, surely working on it is worth the effort. I appreciate your kind comments John, and reading your beautiful poetry tells me you are probably a man with a positive attitude.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Lora, I agree with your comments completely. Epigenetics are a fasciating science, and it is amazing how powerful our attitude and thoughts affect everything about our lives. I appreciate your kind comments and share your beliefs.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 17, 2019:

Hi Flouish, I am so impressed by your experience. I wish I had decided not to have lupus so many years ago. I got sick, but I have always known I was strong. I did perseverve and always thought I would but it was not without too much medicine.

I surely agree that laughter is a great medicine. You are fortunate that you have a good husband that makes you laugh.Thank you so much for sharing your experience and making comments.

Lorna Lamon on May 17, 2019:

Hi Pam - I'm a big fan of 'Positive Thinking' and try to practice it both at work and home. I think it's all about training your brain to see situations in a more positive way. This is not always easy, however, as we can see from your article it does improve your overall health and well-being. Great article full of interesting points.

Liz Westwood from UK on May 16, 2019:

This is an interesting and well-balanced article. It recalls to mind the words of an old song "Always look on the bright side of life".

John Hansen from Australia (Gondwana Land) on May 16, 2019:

A wonderful article, Pamela. Positive thinking definitely helps us live healthier longer lives. A positive attitude has been proven to help people heal quicker and more effectively. It does also seem to attract success. Not many negative people reach the top. You offer a lot of great advice. Good job.

Lora Hollings on May 16, 2019:

A great article, Pamela, in convincing anyone that they need to have a much more positive attitude about life and that we need to focus on the good things that happen to us and forget about the negative things! The discoveries made by epigenetics are fascinating and show that genes are strongly influenced by experiences. We all have the capacity to change the course of our lives in a much more positive direction and by filling our minds more with activities and thoughts that make us happy we will live much better lives and have better health as well!

FlourishAnyway from USA on May 16, 2019:

I completely believe in the power of the mind, both positive and negative. I decided I was going to undo any incurable illness I had and even told my doctor I didn’t believe I had MS many years ago. Although the MRIs and spinal tap at the time said otherwise, I persisted in my belief and did what I believed I had to do, even going off MS medicine in 2006. In the last few years, I’ve been told there is no clinical evidence of the disease. Twelve lesions completely disappeared and my new doctor even refers to my diagnosis in air quotes and uses “supposedly” because he totally buys that I don’t have it now. Who knows what happened but I love it! I am grateful to my loving husband whom I married because he totally makes me laugh. You can find happiness and humor in any situation.

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