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Does having a negative mind vs positive mind really make a difference?

Let's first talk about what is mindset?

mindset noun

the established set of attitudes held by someone. "the region seems stuck in a medieval mindset"

Definitions from Oxford Languages Basically it is the way your mind reacts to every situation, and always remember, a situation can be good or bad, depending on your reaction.

Here's my point, when I was diagnosed with Crohn's back in 2011, I had a very negative mindset, I thought my world was crashing down, I could never be happy, everything that I did I always reacted in a very negative way. Could you blame me? Getting diagnosed with a life long chronic disease can be very scary, confusing and so much more! But we can be positive or negative about every situation!

When I got diagnosed instead of thinking:

"Ok, how can I live well with this disease?"

I would think"

"I am never going to get better"

"These medications are not working"

"Why am I always sick?"

"Why is this happening to me?"

"What did I do to deserve this?"

The point is, I was always the victim. There was nothing anyone, or anything could do in order to make me change my mind. When we have a chronic disease or live with chronic pain, it can feel like we might never get better, I get it, I was there too. We all have our chronic disease stories, so learning about mindset and changing our outlook and reactions can have a major impact on our day to day, living with chronic disease.

If you're positive thinker you believe in yourself, you believe in your future, you believe you will get better, you make the best of every situation, even if they suck! Whereas if you're a negative thinker you often times will not try something because you don't believe you will succeed, ultimately leaving you in your status quo which you may or may not be happy with.

But the beauty of our minds is

we can change them.

How do we change our mindset?

It is definitely easier said than done! But you can do it!

If you think of your brain as a muscle, the way to get stronger muscles is by working them out. You go to the gym, you go for runs, you do exercise in order to stay fit and stay strong. But so many people don't treat their brains as a muscle, when that is exactly what they are. In order to strengthen the mind you need to workout that muscle.

So what do I mean by working out the mind? Here are five things you can do on a daily basis to workout the mind and help you shift from a negative mind to a positive mind:

  1. Practice Gratitude: When we practice gratitude it actually reduces negative emotions like resentment, jealousy and anger because we are grateful for what we have right now, as opposed to dwelling about things that we don’t have, can't afford, or that are out of our control.

  2. Meditate: When we meditate we have the capacity to slow our bodies down, it reduces stress and it helps our bodies relax, ultimately reducing negative emotions and negative thoughts.

  3. Get out of your comfort zone! When we get out of our comfort zones and do something sporadic or courageous, we are ecstatic and proud of ourselves! When we're excited about something we've done and we're proud of ourselves positivity floods our minds for what we accomplished, that there is no room for negativity!

  4. Stop negative self talk: We all have a negative voices but we have the capacity to stop them. I've been working with a great friend over the last year and she's been able to silent the perfectionist voice in her mind, she's even given this alter ego a name LOL. To change that negative chatter in your mind and that little voice in your head that says “you can't do it", “you're not good enough”, “you should do better” you literally tell it to STOP and say the opposite say “I AM good enough”, “I AM worthy of this”, “I AM doing my best!” When you start thinking this way your mindset (over time) will change!

  5. Read and learn from books: Reading (or listening to audio books) is one of the best ways to workout the mind, reading educates, it helps your mindset be more open and it can help reduce that negative chatter in your mind. Books that I love are Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill How to Win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie, Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki and finally The 5AM Club by Robin Sharma (this one is probably my favourite!)

Go get 'em you positive panda!


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