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Five Steps to a Positive Attitude

on June 1, 2012

5 Steps to a Positive Attitude

A positive attitude is highly connected to longevity and improved life satisfaction in survey after survey. It seems that those individuals who have a positive attitude live longer and experience happier lives. But a positive attitude is not just something you have; it is something you have to continually work at as you get older. Loss of loved ones, impaired health, dealing with financial issues, and the modern culture’s attitude towards the elderly can make keeping a positive attitude more challenging. To develop and maintain a positive attitude, I recommend the following five steps.

Stay Connected

Social isolation increases with age. We lose friends and family and end up spending more time alone. While a certain amount of private time is essential, too much of it can make us feel disconnected and we start to wonder if anyone cares about us. Feelings of depression and anxiety increase without our connections to others. It is important to spend time and energy maintaining the friendships you have and work on building new relationships. Many people that I talk to mention that some of their best friendships are those that they developed later in life. In addition to friendships, I recommend being active in clubs, associations, and your church where you will find many people who share your interests and passions.

Contribute

Those individuals who volunteer and give back to their communities consistently report positive emotions and a sense of satisfaction. Everyone needs to feel needed at some level, and helping others feeds this need. Your time and effort can help so many people who are in need. Especially with all of the cutbacks of government services, the contributions of individuals become increasingly important. Pick a charity or group that you feel a connection to and volunteer your time.  You’ll feel better for it.

Stay Active

Physical activity and exercise are key to maintaining your health and attitude. Exercise increases the release of neurotransmitters that are associated with positive mood and is also has a pronounced positive effect on lowing cholesterol and blood pressure. Exercise helps maintain your bone mass as well as your muscle tone. Completing an exercise or physical activity has the added benefit of giving you a sense of accomplishment. It is important not to overdo exercise
so be sure to check with your doctor about what level and intensity is right for you.

Keep your Brain Active

There is considerable research that demonstrates maintaining a high level of mental activity and stimulation is great for your attitude and maintaining your mental health.Reading, playing games, and doing mental challenges such as crossword puzzles and brain teasers helps your memory and mental processing. Keep reading books and the newspaper, stay up with current events, and engage your brain by thinking deeply and often about issues. As the saying goes, the brain is a muscle that needs to be exercised.

Another part of keeping your brain active is to practice the art of positive thinking. Don’t dwell on past negative events; instead focus on the positive things that are going on in your life now. Positive thinking is all about perspective and it is something you can manage if you put your mind to it. Look for and recognize the positive that is happening all around you.

Have Fun

Engaging in hobbies and non-work related activities help you to keep a positive attitude. Although we are older, try to stay connected to the kid inside you by making sure you include enough play time in your day. The most important aspect of fun is that it has no other purpose than to give us enjoyment. Fun is good for the heart and soul.

By practicing these five steps on a daily basis and encouraging others around you to do the same,
you will find that your life is happier and more fulfilling, and your positive attitude will be a life companion.

Keep your Brain Active and Have Fun by playing our PhotoTeasers every Friday.

 


One response to “Five Steps to a Positive Attitude

  1. @GreatLikes says:

    Physical activity makes such a difference. I went for a bike ride this morning as the sun came up. It couldn’t have been a better start to this day!

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