by JS Dental Lab |
How to Keep Your Thoughts Positive
We all know that person who seems to have a rosy pair of glasses on all the time. You know, that person who can find the silver lining in every dark cloud?
Sure, it can get annoying.
But … if we had to be honest …
It’s also something we less rainbow-y thinkers tend to envy.
Having a positive outlook isn’t just for mental stability. Studies show that the right mindset can enhance your physical health and attract success.
You’ve heard of the Law of Attraction. And though you may have dismissed it as “hooey,” there's a lot of science behind it, so we’ll walk through this theory and why it works.
And if you’re a teeth grinder, you may struggle with negative feelings about this painful condition. And since stress also causes teeth grinding (also known as bruxism), not maintaining positive thoughts can also keep the bruxism cycle going.
Ahead, we’ll discuss all the ways to keep your thoughts positive. All it takes is learning how, and then practicing that mindset.
Ready to get started? No, it’s not impossible. That’s a negative thought there!
Let’s train your brain to think on the bright side starting right now. Here are some strategies to get you going.
Get Real About Yourself
Before you can figure out how you need to improve your thinking, you need to get to know yourself all over again.
You do have positive attributes, and you also have room for improvement. We all do.
Getting real about yourself means taking a good hard look at the good and the bad! It’s usually easier to focus on what we see as our negative flaws, especially with our appearances.
Since you’re probably already thinking about everything you don’t like, let’s start there. (Don’t worry, this is a journey toward self-compassion! We’ll see this through together.)
Analyzing Your Negative Attributes
We will dissect your negative traits and learn how to flip them into a positive direction. But first, take a minute to consider what you’d like to change about yourself.
Remember, these should be changeable, so leave it out if it’s part of your permanent appearance.
These could be traits like:
- An attitude of helplessness or hopelessness
- Being argumentative
- Easily angry or frustrated
- Tendency to be rude or tactless
- Frequently judgmental (to others and self)
None of these traits are “bad” things. In fact, we need a mix of all emotions to be well-rounded.
But when we feel any emotion to the extreme, it can begin to influence negative thinking patterns.
See also: Everything About Night Guards
Your Environment Matters - Look Around You
To turn these traits into something more positive, you need to look at your environment. If it supports the negativity, it will be hard to grow.
First, examine your tribe. After all, you reflect the five closest people you surround yourself with.
Do your nearest and dearest friends and family try to convince you to be a better version of yourself? Or are you a “rainbows and unicorns” thinker compared to them?
We’ll discuss why this matters ahead.
What Kind of People Are You Attracting?
Here’s the thing:
That Law of Attraction idea we mentioned earlier will attract a like tribe. Positive, happy people don’t want to hang out with cynical, thoughtless, and negative people.
They might be “stuck” with that kind of person as a family member or long-term friend, but they’re not going to go out of their way to see them. And when they do, they’ll be trying to get them to reframe their darker thoughts into brighter ones.
You can learn from those “glass half full” people. In fact, they’re the ones you want to be around as you try to keep your thoughts and values positive.
Hanging out with the wrong crowd is worse than being lonely. You don’t have room to invite positive people in when you surround yourself with negativity.
On the flip side of that, when your mind is full of optimism, you don’t want cynicism around you.
You can alter your natural tendency to think the worst into something happier if you limit the naysayers in your life.
And just think of how much potential stress you can save yourself after doing so!
Keep Track of the Good Things
There’s a psychological philosophy known as the Blue Car Syndrome. Officially, the term is the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon, but “blue car syndrome” is more fun to say.
It’s the phrase we use when something you notice for the first time suddenly starts appearing everywhere.
For example, if you see a blue car and say, “Hey, look, it’s a blue car,” you’ll probably start seeing more blue cars for the next few days.
There are not actually more of them. You’re just noticing them more frequently because it’s on your mind.
The same phenomenon can happen with good things.
Look for the Good
The truth is, we see what we’re looking for. If you’re trying to point out all the bad things in your life, you’ll find them.
But if you start noticing the little things that are magical and wonderful, those will be what shape your thoughts.
Louis Armstrong clearly described how this works in his song about skies of blue, clouds of white, and other natural beauty. He realized “What a Wonderful World” we live in.
You, too, can make a list of the good things you see. Your positive self-talk will improve, and so will your physical health.
End your day with happy thoughts, and you’ll quickly realize your sleep is more relaxed. It may just be what you need to decrease your teeth grinding habit.
Researchers link better sleep and gratitude to less nighttime teeth grinding from stress, lower blood pressure, and higher quality of life.
Increase Your Mindfulness
Changing your habits starts with your morning routine.
Start waking up and meditating, like Mahatma Gandhi swore by. The busier you will be that day, the more critical it is to meditate.
After all, meditation shows positive effects on mental and physical health and cognitive function.
Following your quiet, peaceful state, you can make a mental list of the things you’re grateful for. Or, start a gratitude journal to keep a written list that you can go back and reference when you’re starting to feel down.
Other strategies that you can turn into daily habits include reciting positive affirmations and reading inspirational quotes.
Memes and apps with affirmations are trending everywhere. Find these feel-good influencers on social media to follow.
Their positive thoughts will do more for your mental health and self-esteem than the cynical, negative feed you probably see as you scroll.
When you find life quotes that resonate with you, save them or write them down. Reread them occasionally, and share them with others when you know they’re hurting.
Again, surrounding yourself with more positive influence can help you keep your thoughts positive.
Give, Give, Give
Studies show that people who give regularly are happier overall. This is because there’s a neural link between generosity and happiness.
The more traction you give a habit, the more that pathway is created in your brain through a process called neuroplasticity. It’s the brain’s ability to change, modify, and adapt throughout life.
These neural pathways explain why it can take about a month to cement a new habit.
It’s harder to break habits that you have ingrained. But for your wellbeing, you need to work on the areas of your life that have pathways of negative emotions.
A positive mindset isn’t going to happen right away. You must purposely swap out those negative habits with positive emotions and behaviors.
Then, your brain’s natural neuroplasticity will adjust to the new, more optimistic you.
Connect Your Thinking to Your Goals
Now that you’ve begun the change to keeping a positive mindset, the next step is to connect your thinking to your goals.
When you do that, it secures this habit by joining it with your real-world targets.
What is your definition of success? Whatever it is, turning your thoughts positive can get you there.
If you’re aiming for financial or professional success, even the wealthiest financial gurus will tell you it’s all in your mindset.
For instance, Ramsey Solutions suggests reading books that help you think positively and evaluate your life values. Albert Einstein believed that no positive results could come from a negative attitude.
Successful men and women know that the Law of Attraction matters when you’re working toward your goals.
Oprah Winfrey released an episode on the topic, with real-life stories about this law in action.
Her guest, author Louise Hay, said our “thinking creates and brings to us whatever we think about.”
So if you want to be successful, speak it into existence, and then do the work.
Are you trying to get in shape, but nothing has worked so far?
As we mentioned earlier, your positive thinking intrinsically connects you to better health.
You can find books that analyze this theory on Amazon, but we’ll review the main ideas in general here.
When you switch to keeping your behavior positive, your body shows the results gradually. It starts when your brain begins to slow the release of stress hormones like cortisol.
Since stress causes chronic health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and stroke, this step already improves your health.
As you continue to work on your mindset, other physical aspects will fall into place.
If you grind your teeth and a dentist diagnoses you as having bruxism, you may notice your symptoms improve. That’s because, as we stated earlier, stress is a leading cause of teeth grinding, so these two things go hand-in-hand.
If you’re a teeth grinder, it may be due to the stress you’re not dealing with healthily.
Talk to your doctor about your troubled sleeping habits and ask for suggestions. Along with dealing with the root causes, get a night guard from JS Dental Lab to reduce your teeth grinding symptoms.
Baby steps forward are still progress.
Related reading: 5 Dental Night Guard Side Effects [+ Solutions]
Go ahead and start researching the terms “science” and “positive thinking.” What you’ll see as the two are intrinsically linked, even if the reasons why aren’t always clear.
We know that the primary connection is that when you’re a positive thinker, you can handle the stress of life better.
Stress takes a toll on the body. But your overall health can improve if you can keep your thoughts positive.
That doesn’t mean you don’t need dental help to speed up the process if you’re a teeth grinder! In fact, getting a custom-made night guard from JS Dental Lab reduces the damage from teeth grinding and clenching and decreases the stress to your wallet.
Start switching your neural pathways today and building new, more positive thoughts. It won’t be long before your brain’s neuroplasticity does its thing, and you become an official “rose-colored glasses” type of person!
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