Dennis Kimetto became the marathon world record-holder in 2014, running a time of 2:02:57 in Berlin according to the International Association of Athletics Federations. His ability to run at a fast pace was reliant on not only his training, but mental preparation and toughness. He couldn’t let negativity get in the way of his goals.
At first, Dennis Kimetto farmed to support his family, says the International Association of Athletics Federations. He started running in 2010, hoping to find an opportunity that would raise his income. His determinedness to provide for his family is what motivates him to keep running and pursue the best results.
Physiologists have found that humans are capable of more than what they believe they can do, which is explained in the article “What Will It Take to Run A 2-Hour Marathon?” by Alex Hutchinson on Runners World. The physical limits of a person are only restricted by their beliefs. If a person is unwilling to believe in themselves, they are far less likely to accomplish a goal. A person being able to see past what they assume are their physical and mental limits will bring them to new levels. This is why people who see things with a positive attitude almost always reach their goals.
Developing a positive attitude can have an amazing impact on your life. It can change hard times into ones of strength, sad times into ones of joy, and assist in the process of accomplishing your goals. Positivity is something we must learn about if we want to become a more content human being.
So, are you ready to change your attitude?
What is Positive Thinking?
Positive thinking doesn’t mean ignoring the irritating things in life. An article titled “Positive Thinking: Stop negative self-talk to reduce stress” by the Mayo Clinic Staff states that positive thinking is taking something negative and turning it into a more positive situation. You can do this by approaching an event with a hopeful, optimistic attitude. It is important to keep in mind that the best will happen, not the worst. It is unlikely the worst will occur anyway, so why worry about it? When you experience emotions like joy, happiness, and love, you will notice the possibilities life has to offer. You will do things you had no idea you could do. Positivity strengthens your relationship with yourself and ultimately gives you a new outlook on life.
5 Facts About Your Thoughts and Attitude
- A person has around 70,000 thoughts per day according to the website LONI – Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, about 80 percent of them being negative.
- The article “What Are Our Thoughts & Emotions” explains that our thoughts are strongly linked to our emotions since many of our thoughts last a long time.
- Happiness and positivity are two entirely different things. In “Are We Happy Yet? The Unexpected Links Between Happiness and Choice” by Alice LaPlante states that positivity is a controllable state of mind while happiness is something we cannot decide to be. It is a factor of the mindset we have- a feeling.
- “The Neuroscience of Happiness” by Michael Bergeisen explains that when you control your thoughts, your brain creates new pathways which are used later for quick thinking. The more you express positivity, the easier it will be to have an optimistic attitude.
- We are unaware of nearly all of the thoughts that pass through our mind. It is explained in the article “The Conscious, Subconscious, and Unconscious Mind – How Does It All Work?” that humans can control only a small amount of our thoughts, the rest actions we perform mindlessly, such as breathing.
Why Do We Have Negative Thoughts?
This year, I was in science doing a lab. I felt a little rushed knowing my group needed to finish by the end of the hour. Hastily, I began filling a beaker with water. I checked to see what mark the water was at and realized I had too much. I went back to the sink to pour some out. Once I was happy with the amount I had, I quickly took the beaker out of the sink, except the lip of the beaker caught the edge. I lost my grip and the sound of shattering glass filled the room. Everyone went quiet. I was frozen from shock, worried I had made my teacher angry. I was also worried about what everyone would think of me. But everything I assumed would happen was wrong: the teacher and students were more concerned about the conditions of the individuals, including me, around the beaker. My teacher spoke, “Is everyone okay?” I felt a little relieved after this caring remark, although I still could not shake my embarrassment. I felt redness appearing on my cheeks and my throat tightening. I had to remind myself that everything was okay and how it could have been worse. At the moment, everything from the week piled into my brain. All of the stress coming with school, sports, family and friends. I kept putting unnecessary pressure on myself and talking negatively. Even after school was over, this embarrassing moment would not stop popping up in my head.
Everyone has experienced negative thoughts before. They come with moments of embarrassment, self-hatred, self-doubt, and poor decision making. They can pop up when we least expect it. Once we undergo a moment, we tend to dig ourselves into a bigger hole of negativity, making it harder with each new thought to change our attitude.
“It is unlikely the worst will occur anyway, so why worry about it?”
Fortunately and unfortunately, negative thoughts are normal, according to the article “Negative Thinking“.
Negative thoughts can become obstacles only if we let them control us. They can destroy the opportunities life has to offer. Additionally, we don’t have to listen to our thoughts if we know they are only going to make us feel bad. You can even turn negative thoughts into positive ones, explains the article “Identifying negative thinking” on the Mayo Clinic website.
The thing is, after I broke the beaker, I kept thinking the worse was going to happen, even though I saw how forgiving everyone was. It is easy to get mixed up in your thoughts and twist what really happened into a bigger problem.
Can Our Thoughts Control Us?
Everything you think is in your head. That’s all there is to it. The article “What Are Our Thoughts & Emotions” states how our thoughts only control us if we let them.
Things like attitude are only a small part of what we think in everyday. We have more unconscious thoughts than we do conscious thoughts.
The thoughts we are unconscious of release neurotransmitters in the brain and actually do control many of our body functions.
Neurotransmitters are similar to messengers. The brain uses neurotransmitters to send important information around the body, according to the article “Neurotransmitters” by Dr. C. George Boeree. They control major parts of our body such as the beating of our heart, the breathing of our lungs, and digestion in the stomach.
The article “What are Neurotransmitters?” on the Neurogistics website explains how about 86% of Americans have unsatisfactory levels of neurotransmitters. Things like a poor diet, stress, drugs, alcohol, and caffeine are some causes of these levels. This is why a positive attitude can be helpful in many people’s lives. Positivity can rewire the way your brain thinks, possibly reversing some of the symptoms linked to certain illnesses and diseases.
Again, we are unconscious of nearly all of our thoughts. Controlling your conscious thoughts is only difficult if you let it be. We can control our thoughts if we want to make a change.
6 Ways Positivity Can Change Your Life
We are only what we allow ourselves to be. Everything we find challenging is inside our heads. If we want to have positive thoughts, we have to let go of our negative ones, states the article “Anxious? This Mindfulness Website Animates Letting Go of Your Negative Thoughts” by Mindful Staff. Once we release the negativity, we are more open to the happier things in the world.
“Our thoughts only control us if we let them.”
Your mind is able to change its thought process quickly. This is only the case only if you are willing to make a change to the way you think. When you make an effort to change your negative perspective to a positive one- for instance: getting angry or feeling worried about something that is out of your control- focus on a half-glass-full mentality. This means looking at the good things that could happen despite having an unexpected hurdle in your path. The article “We All Want to Stay Positive: But How Should We Do It?” describes how we should stop worrying about things that don’t matter. It will not only impact the way you see life, but the people surrounding you, too. You will be able to jump the hurdles in life with much less trouble.
I hope you enjoyed my post! These are samples of what is to come in my future posts!
1. Positivity Can Lead To A Longer, More Fulfilled Life
There is a theory explaining how people who have a positive outlook on their lives are better able to cope with stressful situations. By doing this, they decrease the harmful problems that can occur with too much stress on their bodies, such as cardiovascular diseases and illnesses. They are able to experience life to the fullest.
There is also proof optimistic people tend to live longer. Many eat healthier, make sure to get enough physical activity, don’t smoking, and drink alcohol in moderation.
2. A Positive Mind Is More Likely To Incorporate Physical Activity
There is a strong connection between exercising and positivity. When you exercise, the brain creates neurochemicals called endorphins, claims the article “Why endorphins (and exercise) make you happy” by Kristen Domonell and Dally Burn on the CNN website. Endorphins are considered to be natural painkillers because they decrease discomfort by initiating opioid receptors in the brain. This natural happiness can help conquer negative thinking. The article “How Do Thoughts & Emotions Impact Health?” by Karen Lawson, MD, talks about how positivity and exercise also makes us more resilient when we are going through difficult times.
If we are positive enough to start exercising, we are more likely to continue with it in the future. This creates a loop of positivity, starting from a positive attitude and continuing from regular physical activity.
People who incorporate exercise into their schedules feel more relaxed, gain self-confidence and feel better about themselves, says the article “Exercise: 7 benefits of regular physical activity” by Mayo Clinic Staff.
3. Those Who Are Positive Do Better On Tests
It’s not unusual for someone to worry about an important test. Feeling anxious before a test means someone cares about how well they do. Unfortunately for many people, anxiety can fog their concentration. The article “The Science of Stress: How Well Do You Test?” states that those who include positive thoughts while they’re taking a test can reduce their anxiety and perform better.
4. You Will Feel More Energized
Being more positive makes you feel unstoppable, states the article “Positive Intelligence” by Shawn Achor. You are more open to different ideas and start seeing things through a new perspective. You also begin to take leaps you wouldn’t have imagined doing before.
If you want to feel energized, then you have to think that you are energized! Remember, if we believe we can do something, there is a very good chance we will reach our goal. Think positively and you will begin to feel the energy flowing through you.
5. Your Creativity Will Increase
When people have positive attitudes while they are working, they are able to boost their performance with many things in life, including creativity, states the article “Positive Intelligence” by Shawn Achor. Ruby Nadler, a graduate at the University of Western Ontario says, “Generally, positive mood has been found to enhance creative problem solving and flexible yet careful learning.”
6. You Will Not Only Feel Happier, But the People Around You Will, Too
Positivity is contagious. The article titled “How Do Thoughts & Emotions Impact Health” proclaims that acting positively creates a welcoming atmosphere. More people are going to want to be around you because your attitude makes them feel good. One person’s positive attitude can fuel the performance of a team, creating a new sense of joy and greater purpose.
Keep At It- Positivity Takes Time To Learn
No one wakes up one day and is offered the job of their dreams. Getting something you truly want requires a genuine interest, time, patience, and, unsurprisingly, a positive attitude. You cannot grow if you don’t give yourself the proper care you need. The next time you find yourself thinking negatively, ask yourself, “What is making me have negative thoughts?” or “Why aren’t I happy with what I have at this moment?” Once you find an answer, try to put a positive spin on the situation. You’ll find yourself feeling more relaxed and grateful with your life. Changing your attitude is easier than you think. It’s up to you to decide whether or not you want to make a change.
Now it’s your turn to let go of your negative thoughts and discover the life-changing effects a positive mind can do for you!
- Featured image by MartaZ* on Foter.