Life can present many challenges, so it is important to maintain a happy and positive mindset. Positive thinking is not just thinking about imagining good outcomes; it is about believing in them. Such manifestations can improve your health significantly, help you achieve your goals, and reduce stress or worries. We can cultivate positive thinking through affirmations, meditation, and journaling, providing to be a useful tool for a better life.
These are phrases that can be repeated to shift your mindset’s direction. They should be said as if they are already true to trick your subconscious into accepting them. This works through a scientific discovery called neuroplasticity.
Through neuroplasticity, which is the ability for the nervous system to change based on internal or external stimuli, positive thoughts/affirmations are turned into facts and make you truly believe you can do it, which pushes you to act on these thoughts. When someone believes they can do something, they feel more confident in overcoming their struggles, resulting in reduced stress levels.
This is the act of participating in mental exercises to achieve a level of awareness for a more peaceful mind and soul. It can be in the form of a workout, breathing exercises, stretching, or even listening to calming music while repeating mantras. The important part of meditation is to focus your attention on one phrase, object, or image to free your mind of any distractions in order to calm your mind of any worries.
Meditation is effective through, once again, our dear friend neuroplasticity. Rewiring how our body thinks and acts allows for temporary-to-permanent changes in the brain, reducing stress, lowering blood pressure, and leading to a longer, healthier life.
For example, a study by Gaëlle Desbordes showed that after eight weeks of mindful meditation, a meaningful decrease in activity of the brain’s amygdala, which is responsible for overwhelming emotional responses to stimuli and represents the fear system, was seen in brain X-rays or MRIs.
Writing down your thoughts and feelings on paper as an outlet for emotions, rather than keeping them bottled up to explode one day. It can be used to let out any frustrations or to just write about your day. These writings give a clearer perspective because they allow you to organize and reflect on your thoughts.
For example, writing down conditions for a sickness you may have or a conflict you recently experienced gives you a clearer view of what the symptoms could entail or what you could have done differently in the conflict. Getting a clearer idea of your feelings and situations also gives a greater understanding of the good things in your life, increasing gratitude and leading to a more positive and holistic outlook in life.
All in all, positive thinking or manifesting through affirmations, meditating, journaling, or any other process shifts your mind and body to a more fulfilling life. Instead of kicking yourself down or hurting someone else, channeling your emotions through manifesting serves as a peaceful outlet. We should all be able to live a happy, healthy life, and positive thinking may not guarantee that, but it will certainly help you achieve such goals.
Lovick, Simon. “The Science behind Journaling and Its Role in Better Health.” The Science behind Journaling, Habitual, www.tryhabitual.com/journal/the-science-behind-journaling
Powell, Alvin. “Harvard Researchers Study How Mindfulness May Change the Brain in Depressed Patients.” Harvard Gazette, Harvard Gazette, 27 Aug. 2018, https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2018/04/harvard-researchers-study-how-mindfulness-may-change-the-brain-in-depressed-patients/
Raypole, Crystal. “Do Affirmations Work? Yes, but There's a Catch.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 1 Sept. 2020, www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/do-affirmations-work#how-they-work
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