Marilyn has been through many calamities managing to stay focused on positive outcomes. Everyone is different, but these steps can help.
Optimism Versus Pessimism
We all experience various levels of crisis during the course of life, and it is easy to get focused on what is happening in that moment. There are people who live in pessimism, continually thinking every minute has something negative, and believe the worst of things transpiring. The individual usually attributes negative situations as self induced (failure) or unworthiness, and gives up easily under pressure.
Optimistic people keep an open mind, attempting to find something good in all things. The individuals also maintain an "I can" attitude, and become inventive in tough situations.
How does one stay positive in the midst of a crisis? It takes practice, getting easier each time the process is implemented. Emotional response is instinct. Depending on the situation, it is natural to experience emotional activation, however, you don't have to stay in it. Stay calm, do not panic, and do not focus on fault, just work at getting through the crisis.
Whenever something negative enters the mind, do not speak it, but change it to a positive. Example: Negative (pessimistic) thought, "This is so horrible, I'll never make it through". Positive (optimistic), "It may be difficult, but I can do this" Verbalizing the alternative positive thought helps to convince the brain that the process will happen. You say it, you hear it, your brain believes it.
Replace negative thoughts with positive. Write down negative words you think of or use against yourself, or someone else spoke over you growing up. State the positives every time the negative comes up. It works. Of course, the most important part for me is the Bible. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
Effects on Health
The human body is directly effected by the stress of crisis, but it is possible to reduce the effects of stress using optimism. Of course individuals will experience different levels of natural emotions, and it helps to have a little understanding how chemistry changes with different types of thinking.
Negative thinking (pessimism), causes the brain to release the hormone adrenaline, creating the "fight or flight" physiological reaction. Cortisol is triggered by adrenaline (causing weight gain). Negative thoughts also contribute to the desire for comfort foods like candy, cookies, pasta, breads, doughnuts.
Positive thinking (optimism), releases the hormone dopamine, (the "feel good" hormone), which has an effect on how we move, think, even eat. If you feel good, you tend to be motivated, uplifted, and eat better.
Some individuals are also effected by beliefs about diseases, or illness, that can cause an onset of symptoms. It is a case of "You get what you believe." Pessimistic individuals have shown a higher rate of illness or onset of disease than individuals with more optimistic outlook.
Thinking Positive and Diet
Some foods are difficult for the body to process, especially sugars, and starch, which turns to sugar too, causing weight gain. Couple the weight gain with stress, a release of cortisol increases gain of inches in the abdominal area.
Eating the right things, coupled with daily exercise during a crisis creates a positive bodily environment to counter the effects of stress. Thought processes are clear, inventive, creative.
Sugars and starches tend to elevate negative reactions within the body causing anger, depression, and illness. Of course, that muddies thought processes.
Eating nourishing foods like meats (chicken, fish, and very little red meat), and green vegetables introduces necessary minerals and vitamins to promote good health, resulting in positive thinking with an optimistic approach to any event.
Important Healthy Eating
Recent Diet Changes
We get so caught up in daily life, work, and family issues that we forget what a balanced diet is, not that it is a diet, but good eating habits. Bad eating habits, lack of exercise and stress can certainly put the pounds on, even if one is attempting to stay away from certain foods. I thought I could lose a few more pounds by simply skipping a meal, and eat less at each sitting. I found myself gaining weight instead of losing it.
I read that the best way to eat without the body thinking it is starving is to eat a big breakfast, have a small snack in between breakfast, and lunch. A sliced favorite fruit, a handful of strawberries, or peanut butter and a couple of celery sticks, just for example, are healthy carbs and fats that keep the metabolism working. Eat a lunch that is smaller than breakfast that would include about 2 ounces of protein like meat, or other protein source, about 1 to 2 cups of vegetables..
Try to eliminate breads and pasta, starches as much as possible. A little once in awhile doesn't hurt, just limit the amount.
Between lunch and dinner another snack of veggies, fruit, or a small amount of cubed cheese are good snacks. Dinner should be the smallest meal of the day because it needs to digest before going to sleep so the metabolism can utilize the nutrients and get rid of what is not needed.
Up to 1 hour before going to bed a snack can be consumed but be careful what the snack is. The snack should be something like a small amount of carrots are a few examples. Celery is another good snack, coupled with a little bit of peanut butter, or even cottage cheese.
I have been eating Keto and have lost 26 pounds, and finally beginning to feel human again. My thought processes are sharper, and energy levels are up, so I know it is working.
Try it, it is worth it to see if it helps. Every person is an individual with different needs, so it may not be for everyone, but, it is worth checking it out.
Music and Art Together
I have discovered using music and art together helps me to realign my thought processes. The motion of my arms, hands, and focus of my eyes tend to set up a forward process, moving forward with a function instead of stopping to do nothing. In this, I mean that when we feel burdened with life in general, bills, relationships, things to do, we tend to want to shut down.
Most people can find something interesting to do that is considered artwork, such as model building, painting, knitting, toy making, drawing, and even gardening is an art in itself. Activities that make you feel good are ideal.
Doing artwork helps me to get moving, and coupled with music, takes my mind off the burdens to refocus my mind and body toward a more effective reaction. Wow...it really worked for me!
- Optimism is positive thinking
- Pessimism (negative thinking) can be changed
- Pessimism, or negative thinking can cause health problems
- Unhealthy eating habits and pessimism feed each other
- Healthy eating, optimism or positive thinking and exercise improves health
- Healthy eating consists of a correct balance of protein, carbohydrates, good fats, vitamins and minerals
© 2014 Marilyn
Marilyn (author) from Nevada on March 26, 2015:
I have been observing people who tend to eat a lot of sugary substances, instead of healthy foods. I would say that at least 7 out of the 8 people I have watched over the past few months, have resulted with negative thinking, anger issues, and illness. Two of those people changed his, and her diet over the last two weeks refraining from sugar completely, eating salads, small amounts of meat, and vegetable/fruit smoothies (with no sugar added), and both have experienced massive changes in mood, being more positive and able to think out situations without getting angry. General health is improving, and in the midst of his and her life pressures (moving from one end of the country to the other), they are able to maintain positive thinking. They each said the improvement in how they feel physically made a tremendous difference in how they perceive the world around them.
Marilyn (author) from Nevada on February 15, 2015:
I have found that diet has a major effect, either positive or negative on how one reacts to situations and stress. I have also caught myself being influenced by emotion on eating some foods that only cause more problems.
Marilyn (author) from Nevada on December 14, 2014:
Peale's book is a good read, I agree. I appreciate your input.
Demas W Jasper from Today's America and The World Beyond on December 13, 2014:
I still recommend Norman Vincent Peale's "The Power of Positive Thinking." It continues to be a classic on this subject.
Good effort in this Hub, too.