I’m the first to confess that generally speaking, I’m not the biggest cheerleader when it comes to self-help.
Frankly, I am one of those people who hated The Secret and couldn’t believe the hype over it.
However, I do feel that there is something to be said for positive thinking. As someone who went through some pretty rough trials and tribulations in the past year, I can honestly say that just hearing encouraging words (especially those said by friends) was often enough to help me snap out of my funk and do something about the situation at hand.
At the very least, it was better than hearing or dwelling on negative thoughts.
While I’m not saying that positive thoughts will solve all your problems and would never suggest they take the place of professional help when necessary, they certainly can’t hurt.
I’m not the sort to stand in front of a mirror and repeat mantras over and over again a la Stuart Smalley, but writing one of these on a piece of paper and glancing at it throughout the day was useful.
For others, though, standing before a mirror or saying these aloud several times throughout the day may be exactly what works.
These 10 thoughts were especially helpful for me:
1. I’ll come out of this stronger than ever.
2. The best is still ahead.
3. This is a great learning experience.
4. One day, s/he will see the error of their ways and regret their behavior towards me.
5. It’s __________ loss.
6. At the end of my life, this will only be a brief moment in time.
7. There’s humor in this somewhere even if I can’t see it now.
8. Life is ultimately going to be better because of this.
9. There are still more good people than bad people out there—I just have to find them.
10. Living well is ultimately the best revenge.
Pick one phrase from the list and see if it helps or allows you to shift your mood, even if it’s only for a brief period of time.
If it doesn’t do the trick then at the very least, it may spur you to take action so that whatever you are saying becomes reality, or at least seems within grasp.
Sometimes, the best thing that can happen when we attempt self-help is realizing that we have a problem that requires the help of others.
In any case, here’s to sending positive thoughts to all whether you happen to believe in them or not.
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Editor: Rachel Nussbaum
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