Posts Tagged ‘exercising’

Using Positive Thinking as a Way to Boost Health

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Can the simple act of choosing to think positively impact your health in a, likewise, positive manner? Studies show that this is quite probable. According to the Mayo Clinic, optimism is associated with longer life span, decreased incidence of depression, greater resistance to viruses causing the common cold, and reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease. Conversely, in a study conducted by Schulz et al, pessimistic personalities correlated with early mortality in patients with recurrent cancer. Other studies have backed up this finding that negative thoughts somehow inhibit the healing process, while those with optimistic dispositions experience a “recovery advantage” and tend to have fewer complications post-surgery.

The exact mechanism by which this process works are largely unknown; however, a number of research studies show that our thoughts can influence our immune system. This is not so good news for chronic pessimists. Dr. Jane Framingham sites that negative thoughts have the potential to cause stress, causing an increase in the level of circulating stress hormones and suppressing the immune system. Yet, don’t despair, you doomsday, nay-sayers! Just because you’re a Negative Nancy today, doesn’t mean you can’t transform into a sunny-side-up aficionado tonight. With a bit of know-how and the desire to improve your outlook (and your health), it’s possible to train your brain.

  1. It’s all about the company you keep. Friends have the ability to uplift; unfortunately, the opposite is true as well. If you’ve got a close friend or family member who always seems to have the “glass half full” mentality, devise a way of gently letting them know that this mindset isn’t helpful to him/her, and that it affects you as well. An example would be, “I’m glad you feel open enough to talk to me about anything, but let’s look at solutions rather than focusing on the problem.”
  2. See the bigger picture. Although your situation may seem futile at the moment, in reality, things are in the constant state of flux. Although you might not know what to do at any given time, a few days of self-reflection may give you the handle you need to make an informed decision.
  3. Exercise!!! Not only does exercise stimulate new neuronal pathways, it has also been shown to be effective at establishing new neuronal networks. According to https://kø physical activity can also boost your sexual drive without any medications. Exercise (as little as 3 times per week), has been shown to be transformative in both psychological and physiological tests. Plus, those who engage in physical activity regularly have been shown to have greater self-esteem than their sedentary counterparts.
  4. Make positive self-talk a habit. Individuals have a tendency to speak critically and harshly to themselves. This kind of negative self-speak only fosters feelings of stress and lowers self-esteem. As a general rule, if you wouldn’t say something to a person you love and care about, don’t say it to yourself. Periodically check in with your stream-of-conciousness throughout the day to assess whether your mindset is sunny or in need of an encouraging boost. If you find yourself being overly critical/harsh, focus on one thing about your day that make you feel confident and happy. For instance, waking up and exercising, eating healthy, or helping out a coworker without prompting are all positive actions that show initiative.