No to Negative

“There is nothing so pitiful as a young cynic because he has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing.” — Maya Angelou

It’s a little ironic that the day I get back from visiting my most sarcastic friend in the most stereotypically depressing city in the world, I start a project on staying optimistic. Yesterday I woke up at 4am (their time) and got into Orlando (having only had sprite and a few handfuls of peanuts) at 4pm. Logan was running late, so by the time I got home it was 6:30. It was probably the worst possible day for trying to be positive, because I was so tired I was in hysterics, even getting frustrated with Logan for not dropping his chili immediately to say goodnight to me. He laughed, I got more neurotic. Then today I caught myself telling Graham that I suck at being positive. Good start.

Here’s the plan:

  • Stay upbeat and see the bright side of things. Studies show that even when you act like you’re in a good mood, not only does it lift the people around you up, but you actually start feeling happier yourself.
  • Have a well-rounded diet with an emphasis on good mood foods like complex carbs (e.g. brown rice, quinoa), B vitamins (e.g. milk, citrus fruits), “happy fats” (e.g. Fish oil, olive oil) and of course anadamine (chocolate!). This also means limiting my intake of depressant like alcohol and not over-eating.
  • Exercise. Preferably outside and at least 20 minutes a day. I’m going to do an exercise project later, but the release of endorphins when you exercise has too much of an impact on positivity to not include.
  • Keep myself surrounded by positive activities like listening to comedy and positive music, reading Bossy Pants by Tina Fey and only watching comedy movies/shows.
  • Keep myself surrounded by positive people. Also, just making sure I don’t isolate myself. Studies show that both extroverts AND introverts get a mood boost from connecting with other people.
  • Smile and laugh more.
  • What is it that they say at AA? “Accept the things I can not change”? This goes for events, people and all the lists I keep.
  • Write in a gratitude journal everyday.

Carried over from other projects:

  • Gluten-free diet.
  • More fresh veggies and fruits.
  • More hobbies and activities, less TV.
  • Avoid things that conflict with who I am.
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2 responses to “No to Negative

  • clareflourish

    I am just starting on a similar intention. I made my commitment to it last month. I wish you well with it. Negativity is just second rate: why not post on “Yes to Positive”?

    • Erika

      I was going to go with “Yes to Positive”, but my desire for alliteration won out. Hopefully by the end of this I’ll be able to rid myself of using words with such a strong negativity. Thanks for reading and good luck with your project!

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