glass half empty

How to be less pessimistic.

Remember being carefree and optimistic during your childhood?

Ah, good times, right? Now you’re a little bit older, a little bit wiser (fingers crossed on that one!) … and very likely a bit more cynical. That last part is to be expected. As we get older, life has its own way of dragging all of us through the mud. We find ourselves with more responsibilities, more worries, and experiences that shape us into pessimists.

And being negative can stress you the h-e-double hockey sticks out. Many people don’t realize that their thoughts, beliefs, and feelings can raise their stress levels. This type of stress is harmful, leading to issues such as depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, and heart disease. Yikes.

But fret not! Even if you’re at the glass-half-empty end of the spectrum, there is still hope for you. It is never too late to change your thoughts. After all, you are what you think.

But how can you stop being pessimistic and recapture some of that youthful, carefree zest to be more of a “glass-half-full” person again?

If you want a positive reality, then your thoughts need to reflect the same.

Want to know if you’re truly a pessimist?

Here are a few telltale signs that will let you know if you are being pessimistic or not.

  • You always think, “what if it doesn’t work out rather than what if it does?”
  • You don’t get shocked when things go wrong.
  • You easily give up.
  • You expect to get bad news.
  • Sometimes, you may be selfish.
  • You find it difficult to forgive.
  • You get annoyed by optimists.
  • You engage in negative self-talk.

If all or some of these signs resonate strongly with you, then you might be a redneck.

I mean, a bonafide pessimist. But look, you can change that. You really, really can! Below we’ll take a look at a small list of things that you can do to stop being a pessimist, courtesy of our friends over at WebMD.

Now, before diving in it’s important to note that these are not one-time solutions. These are small habits you need to inculcate in your everyday life.

Once you start incorporating them, they will become inherent, and being more positive will become like breathing.

Kicking your pessimistic mindset.

  • Become mindful of your negative thoughts. Spend time noticing when your negative thoughts arise and what they’re focused on. They might be about your job, your relationships, or your situation at your school. At first, you could try and select just one area to focus your energy on.
  • Check-in with yourself. Throughout the day, slow down and stop. Check-in with yourself and see if your thoughts are negative or positive. If you find that they’re negative, try and uplift yourself. 
  • Laugh more. Having a sense of humor in your general daily life can significantly improve your sense of positivity. When you laugh, you feel less stressed, and when you feel less stressed, you are more likely to look at life through a positive lens. 
  • Include movement in your life. A great way to get rid of negative energy is to work out. It can be as short as a fifteen-minute workout. You just need to move your body to release that energy. Even if you don’t feel like working out, take time and go for a walk.
  • Surround yourself with supportive people. Surround yourself with people who uplift you and contribute positive meaning to your life. It’s essential to have people in your life who can offer their support, providing advice and positive feedback. Negative people only increase your stress and make you unsure whether you can even shift towards a more positive outlook. 
  • Engage in positive self-talk. Be gentle with yourself. Encourage yourself, even when a negative thought enters your mind. Try and lead with your good qualities and affirmations of what you like about yourself. The golden rule is that if you think something that you wouldn’t say to a friend, chances are it isn’t helpful to you. 
  • Make a gratitude list. When you focus on things you have rather than what you lack, you create abundance in your life. Sometimes, we take the little things in life for granted and this is where pessimism comes from. Every day, write about five things you are thankful for in life. This will help you to keep things positive as you will focus on what you do have, and it’ll help stop you from being pessimistic.
  • Do good things for others. Do you know what will help you feel positive and stop being pessimistic? Yep, you guessed it! Be kind and do good for other people. Smile at someone to make their day, leave a good tip for your waiter, offer to hold groceries for an elderly, or compliment a stranger.

Final thoughts.

On your quest to chill out and stress less, know that your negative thoughts can make that journey more cumbersome. Don’t let it. You are in control of your thoughts. With a little effort and incorporating some of the tips above, you’ll start to see and feel improvements in no time!

Need a boost toward thinking more positively? Head over here to get a free 31-Day Positive Thinking Guide.

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