Fitness Tip of the Day:
Focus on the reality of the present and don’t dwell on the mistakes of the past.
If you’ve turned on your TV or listened to the radio lately, you’ve most likely flipped through news programs that report significantly more negative stories than the feel good ones that make you believe in miracles. When we are inundated with that type of negative influence, day in and day out, it’s hard not to also reflect a negative (or pessimistic) attitude as well. This type of attitude is a workout program “killer”.
On the flip side, “optimism” is the outlook that good things will happen, even if the situation may not appear totally positive at the moment. It involves the skill of positive thinking (the ability to approach unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way). Optimists don’t bury their heads in the sand and ignore negative situations, they simply have a more positive outlook on a negative situation: For example:
- You step on the scale and see ZERO change in the number. A negative response would be to blame yourself for not losing the weight expected and place blame on the “cheat” day you had earlier in the week and your lack of self control. A positive response would be to be thankful that you didn’t gain any weight and to recognize that you’ve lost 25 pounds since you started your program.
- You’re on your last set of leg press and you’re seriously feeling the “burn”. A negative response would be to give up on the exercise because you convince yourself the exercise is causing harm. A positive response would be to work through the “burn” and know that the extra effort is safe and will produce the changes in your body you are looking to achieve.
In fact, the power of positive thinking has been well-documented by researchers and have been linked to the following health benefits:
- Lowering the rate of depression
- Improved psychological and physical wellbeing
- Decreased risk of death from cardiovascular disease
- Improved life span
- Better able to cope with hardships and/or stress
Whether our thoughts are positive or negative, they often start with self talk (the endless stream of unspoken thoughts that go through our head while we are conscious). As you can imagine, if this constant stream of unspoken thoughts are mostly negative, your outlook on life is more likely pessimistic. If your thoughts are mostly positive, your view is likely more optimistic.
Happiness is a choice … so CHOOSE WISELY!