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According to social psychology, positive reframing starts with the small decisions we make throughout the day. In this post, we will learn how to Train Your Mind to Focus on the Positive.
When something goes wrong at work, it is normal to take that negative experience and hold onto it for the rest of the day or maybe even for the whole week. That tendency is a product of how our brains are wired. Our view of the world has a fundamental tendency to tilt toward the negative. There is a lot of research that shows we have to work harder to see the upside of things.
Focuses on finding psychological tools that allow people to change that, and reframe their experiences. They have found that when it comes to optimistic thinking, the tools to turn negative situations into positive ones are in our own hands.
Our minds may be built to look for negative information and to hold onto it, but we can also retrain our minds if we put some effort into it and start to see that the glass may be a little fuller than we initially thought.
Here are a few ways you can train your mind to reframe your failures, let go of negativity, and focus on the good:
Practice “gain framing”
The “framing effect” is a psychological concept that is all about how you frame your stories to others, recalling your own experiences can alter the way you see them. There is a lot of research in the social sciences showing that depending on how you describe a glass to people, it changes how they feel about it. If you describe the glass as half-full, this is called a ‘gain frame,’ because you are focusing on what is gained. But if you describe the same glass as half-empty, it is a loss frame. When we use gain framing to describe our experiences to others, we start to see the given situation positively. It is about learning to rehearse good news and share it with others.
Acknowledge one good thing
Reframing a negative experience is not always easy. When you are upset, it can help to focus on a different experience entirely one that you feel good about. While it is easy to assume that venting will help get rid of your negative emotions, dwelling instead on one good thing that happened that day can prompt your brain to switch directions which is ultimately more helpful.
For optimal practice, it is suggested to take pen to paper even if it feels difficult at the moment. You have to work to see the upside. There is just writing for a few minutes each day about things you are grateful for can dramatically boost your happiness and well-being.
How we react in the moment can make a significant difference, too. What if the next time somebody snapped at you, you forgave them? Or what if the next time you had a grumpy waitress, you left her an extra-large tip? By responding counterintuitively, and offering ourselves time to reframe, we can stop our brains from the cycle of dwelling on the negative, and then spreading it. One mean comment can stick with somebody all day… and that tends to propagate itself. How we respond can determine how our minds see the experience in retrospect.
Looking to try out meditation or focus more on the positive? Why not try out Tisserand Aromatherapy?
Why not give a Positive Pea to someone you love, to remind them to see the positive in every day?
Trishna Patnaik has a BSc (in Life Sciences) and MBA (in Marketing) by qualification but is an artist by choice. A self-taught artist based in Mumbai, Trishna has been practising art for over 14 years. After she had a professional stint in various reputed corporations, she realised that she wanted to do something more meaningful.
She found her true calling in her passion which is painting. Trishna is now a full-time professional painter pursuing her passion to create and explore to the fullest. She says, “It’s a road less travelled but a journey that I look forward to every day.” Trishna also conducts painting workshops across Mumbai and other metropolitan cities in India.
Trishna is an art therapist and healer. She works with clients on a one-on-one basis in Mumbai.
Trishna fancies the art of creative writing and is dappling her hands in that too, to soak in the experience and an engagement with readers, wanderers and thinkers.