7 Pathways to a More Positive Life
For the most part, I would say that I’ve always been a genuinely positive person. When I was younger, my sisters said that if they wanted to, they could’ve thrown me down the stairs and I would’ve still came back to them singing and smiling. And while that thought is scarily aggressive, for the most part it’s pretty true. No matter what has happened throughout my life, I’ve generally maintained a positive disposition. Of course I’ve had my share of disappointments, but they've never influenced my outlook on life. Now, we can attribute this characteristic of mine as a partial result of my God-given personality, but for the other accounted portion, I would like to attribute this aspect of my character to my mindset. I knew from a young age that although I couldn’t control my circumstances, I could choose what I meditated on. I could either choose to dwell on negativity, or I could choose to find the positivity in life.
Many people go through life living in the aftermath of disappointment. They choose to victimize their life, living in an attitude of negativity and despair, void from all hope. I’ve been reading Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer, and in the book she explains how the avoidance of hope is like a defense mechanism. Because of the pain that comes with disappointment, people victimize their life and numb their pain by believing that nothing good can happen because of the hand they’ve been dealt. This type of thinking and behavior breeds a life of negativity. What we think is what we become. Remember, Proverbs 23:7 tells us, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” Therefore, we are what we choose to meditate on. That means that in order for us to be positive, we must think positive thoughts.
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Life is naturally going to be filled with unfortunate events and disappointments. Things won’t always go as planned, and people won’t always live up to their word. At times, life can be downright devastating, but that isn’t an excuse to think that it will continue to be that way. You may not be able to control what happens, but you can control your outlook on life. The best thing we can do as we face life’s disappointments is to go to the Word to renew our mind. That is the first step you can take on the journey to becoming more positive. Once you’ve done that, here are 7 pathways you can take to a more positive life.
Think and speak in agreement with His purpose and plan for your life.
If you trusted God’s character and fully believed His plan for your life, you would be able to trust and speak in agreement with that plan. God knows the plans that He has for you. He said that “they are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11). We can’t control what happens to us, and we most definitely can’t control God’s plan, but we can learn how to align our heart to His desires by speaking in agreement with His purpose and plan for our lives.
Practice being positive in every situation.
A positive person is always looking for the silver lining in every situation. The Bible tells us to rejoice at all times, even when we are suffering.
“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.” (Romans 5:3-5)
This means that even if life is looking bleak at the moment, you can still be positive because the Lord is strengthening and refining you; and ultimately you can trust that He’s working it out for your good, as He has promised it in His word. (Romans 8:28)
Develop an awareness to negative thinking.
Because I know that I struggle with anxiety and negative thinking at times, I asked the Holy Spirit to develop an awareness in me for when I engage in such thinking. In order to make an effective change, you must be conscious of your thoughts and behaviors. Admit that you have a problem and then trust the Holy Spirit to do His work to restore your mind. (John 16:7,8)
Become a new creation.
According to Joyce, if you’re a negative person, it’s important not to feel condemned, because condemnation is negative. Trust that God can restore your mind. The pathway to freedom happens once you acknowledge the problem and make way for change, and in order to that, you must renew your mind as a new creation in Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us that “anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” That means that if you’re in Christ, you can’t keep living in the negativity of your past. You can’t let your old lifestyle affect your new life in Christ. Renew your mind according to His Word, and live your life in the positivity of His Word and love.
Have a ready and expectant mind.
It’s important that we are women who know how to adapt to the will of God. We can’t be ready to fall out every time something doesn’t work out or goes our way. We must have a mind and soul that is ready and open to the will of God, whatever that will might be. Now this isn’t an excuse to be pessimistic or worry-filled. It’s all about facing the facts and trusting that regardless of what happens, you are expecting the Lord to fulfill His blessings and promises. You can examine the facts in a mindful and positive way, and then wait confidently and expectantly for His best ( Lamentations 3:25; Isaiah 30:18; Romans 8:25)
Speak positively and cast down negative thoughts.
To think positive thoughts, we must build up a vocabulary of positive words. Our words and thoughts have the power to manifest our reality. If you are saying negative words, you are thinking negative thoughts, and if you’re thinking negative thoughts, you are probably producing negative actions and results. The tongue has the power of life and death (Proverbs 18:21). In order to speak life and positivity, you must learn how to cast down negative thoughts by thinking intentional thoughts and using the word as ammunition.
Realize that you’re a work in progress.
No matter how negative you are or how long you’ve been that way, realize that you are a work in progress and you do have the ability to change. When you get discouraged, remember that God started a good work in you, and He is carrying out that work to completion (Philippians 1:6). He is helping you every day to grow in grace, until He has finished the work He has begun. So when you feel negative, distressed, unfinished, or inadequate, remember you’re a work in a progress and that the Lord is still fulfilling His promises within you.
The bottom line is that you can always find the positive in every situation. There will always be a light at the end of the tunnel. You don’t have to be born positive to be a positive person. It is a daily choice to live in faith and hope instead of the harsh and sometimes dismal reality of your circumstances. Choose to trust the Lord regardless of what happens and take the positive path in life.
If you’re struggling with negative thinking or just a poor mindset in general, I would highly recommend you read Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer. Whether you’re dealing with “worry, doubt, confusion, depression, anger, or feelings of condemnation” this book is designed to help you fight the attacks in the battlefield of your mind. I recommend this book as a supportive resource to all of my clients who go through my Fashion Your Life Coaching Program. It has been very influential in helping me gain control of my negative and anxious thoughts. If you’re ready to start winning the war in your mind, you can click here to purchase your copy today.
How do you choose to stay positive through life’s ups and downs? Tell me in the comments below!
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