How Do You Stay Positive?

United Kingdom
December 6, 2017 5:36am CST
I must admit something I've only really admitted to my partner. I've been struggling recently. I've spent a couple of years being happy after learning how to appreciate the good, look for silver linings and all that. It worked for a while. I faced problems with a positive attitude and determined that anything that went 'wrong' did so for a reason and to allow something better. Now, this positive attitude has been great. However, recently, there seem to be too many things going on. Don't want to go into detail suffice to say that, even that which I have tried to resolve, it all seems beyond my control. Examples such as doing everything you think you're supposed to do, only to suddenly discover that it wasn't enough. Responding to issues only to be told you haven't responded which, in turn, causes more/bigger problems. Anyway, as I said, I don't want to go into detail. I'm just going to say that I was already feeling down and then a whole load of things went wrong, including things I thought were (being) resolved. A friend of mine, when I told her about a problem I'd been having (because she asked), said I seemedto be really calm and taking it in my stride. Little did she know that the only reason for that appearance is because I don't go all drama queen about everything. She said that some people would not be coping with just that one thing (nevermind adding other things to it) but, well, I really wasnt. (I wanted to put a separate rant of the day discussion about this particular friend, but worried lest I came acrossas insensitive or horrible)! I am happy to say that I have a very supportive partner. I know he doesn't always understand, and sometimes he does annoy me when he says there's no need to worry, but he is helpful when he can be. So, what I am saying is that, for a little while, I was finding it hard to appreciate the good things. I told myself I should be grateful for things but, for a short time, even though I have things about which to be happy and thankful, I couldn't think of anything. It was like I had forgotten how to be happy or how to appreciate. Once I'd reminded myself, I knew I needed to lift myself up again. I wasn't really happy and I didn't truly feel I had much for which to be thankful but I told myself I should be. Then I began to believe it again. Iy wasn't that I didn't have anything for which to be thankful, I simply didn't feel anything good at the time. With the help of my partner, I am pulling myself back up. I am beginning to see the good in things again, and believing that everything will be OK again. One thing I realised, which may be at least partly to blame for my recent mood (apart from the after-effects of Nightmare Boss and the other things that are actually going wrong) is that I have no goals. I feel like I have nothing for which to aim at the moment. This is something I have come to see I need. While I was working, studying, raising children, losing weight, etc. I had a purpose and ambition. Now my children don't need me so much, I've finished studying (I'd gladly do more but can't afford to and really need to concentrate on finding more work), I lost all the weight I needed to lose. I have things I'd like to do, projects I've been doing, but no real set goals. So I'm going to work out something I really want to do and set realistic goals. Anyway, even the happiest and most positive people have times when they find it hard to keep up the positivity. So, when things are getting on top of you, what do you do to stay positive? Do you look for positives in everything? Is there someone or something that helps you stay positive? Or do you let things run their course until you're in a better frame of mind?
5 people like this
7 responses
@Daelii (2039)
• United States
6 Dec
It depends! I had struggled bad with depression when living up north with abusive and toxic people. What helped was writing in a personal/ private journal. Few were able to read it but their support will never be forgotten. Even at that, some awful stuff just stayed private. The finding 3 good things a day. Even if mine only were 1 a day and food related lol Just knowing that once you hit rock bottom the bad stuff can't get worse When one door closes a window opens. Just got to find it
3 people like this
• United Kingdom
6 Dec
They are all good things to do. I write too. I used to write a lot of poetry and that would sometimes help. Writing is my passion anyway (although it can be a Catch-22 when you're down and want to write but can't seem to put pen to paper). Even if the writing is never read again, I think it can help to just get it out. Now, I might come on here and have a rant or I'll talk with my partner. He doesn't mind me just getting everything out! Well, as long as he's not in trouble, he is happy for me to just rant as I need to! One thing I've said before is similar to what you said about doors and windows - there is always a door, you just have to find it. I also remind myself of achievements and advice I've given to friends such as 'look at the oceans you've already swam and you'll realise that what's in front is just a puddle'. A counsellor suggested the positive affirmations thing as well. I upset myself because I couldn't think of any! Getting away from toxic people is hard but worth it. Thinking about it, that's a common factor between recent events and a previous difficult time. It is so much easier to think and feel positive when you're nkt surrounded by toxic people.
4 people like this
@Daelii (2039)
• United States
6 Dec
@pumpkinjam I really love the oceans / puddle comparison. You inspired my next kindness rock! sometimes its hard to do 3 or think of even one. so just do 1 thing.. some ideas I've used int the past: -. I ate today - I woke up - im alive - its not to cold to go for a walk - im not sick today even if its small, its something. :)
3 people like this
@Fleura (6168)
• United Kingdom
6 Dec
@Daelii @pumpkinjam I know it seems unkind in a way, but because of my work I spend a lot of time reading about various diseases and other medical disorders, and it makes me so thankful that so far, I have not got any of those horrible problems! Just to be alive and healthy and not caught up in a war of any sort is such a blessing!
2 people like this
@Daelii (2039)
• United States
6 Dec
Best of all, my husband is very supportive now. We went through a lot and came together stronger.
3 people like this
• United Kingdom
6 Dec
It's great to have a supportive partner. I appreciate mine so much. After 3 years, I'm still surprised sometimes at how supportive he is.
3 people like this
@bunnybon7 (33061)
• Holiday, Florida
6 Dec
i try to pull myself up. i talk with positive helpful friends. i try to push all the bad out of my mind and for a while it works
2 people like this
• United Kingdom
7 Dec
I also find it helps to have something to look forward to. I have been getting myself down there as I can't afford to make the plans I wanted. Most of those plans, I can live without, but one of them was to plan a visit to see our girls so I'm sad we can't do that. Having positive and helpful friends is probably a nice thing. I think I've been spending too much time with negative ones. I only have one friend I see regularly and she's been getting me down with her issues!
1 person likes this
@bunnybon7 (33061)
• Holiday, Florida
7 Dec
@pumpkinjam yes it is very hard sometimes to get away from depression when you keep getting so many disappointments. I know the feeling especially these days
1 person likes this
@Corbin5 (81577)
• United States
6 Dec
I swap negative thoughts for positive thoughts, at lightening speed, to stay positive. With practice the swapping becomes innate. I also endorse myself for everything I do that needs to be done. A person who endorses themselves develops a sense of security. A sense of security does away with a lot of the negative feelings.
2 people like this
• United Kingdom
7 Dec
Great idea. Even if we feel we haven't achieved a lot, we can find something good to say even if it's just 'I got out of bed today'.
2 people like this
@JolietJake (41205)
6 Dec
I've found going out and shooting a few strangers, maybe sacrificing a virgin or two (virgin babies work best) usually helps. That, and sarcasm...LOTS of sarcasm. I don't always stay positive, but I've found if I get sarcastic about things, it makes it easier for me to deal with them.
2 people like this
• United Kingdom
6 Dec
:D :D :D Shooting and virgin sacrifice is frowned upon here. Sarcasm, however, can bring great relief (as long as you remember to laugh at those who don't understand it because even shooting stupid people is frowned upon).
2 people like this
@bunnybon7 (33061)
• Holiday, Florida
6 Dec
another thing is to concentrate on now. from this day forward. and sometimes just force yourself to laugh to keep from crying about things.works for me.
1 person likes this
• United Kingdom
7 Dec
I find that does work most of the time. Not all the time because it can sometimes be really draining to laugh when we want to cry! But sometimes making ourselves try to act happy can help us to eventually cause ua to be happy.
1 person likes this
@Fleura (6168)
• United Kingdom
6 Dec
I'm sorry you're going through such a tough time. That's a difficult question, there is no easy answer. For a start I think some people are naturally more positive than others. I tend to be reasonably happy and I do appreciate the little things in life - the sunshine, the birds singing, seeing a friend, that sort of thing. But when everything seems to go wrong at once it's very hard not to feel down, that's only natural. For one thing I think you need to have lots of aspects to your life if possible, for example not just your job or your family but friends, other interests, maybe volunteering, different social groups. Then when one or more things go wrong at least you still have other things that will take your mind off it where you will see friendly people and it will help. Hopefully not absolutely everything will go wrong at once. And then the goals - I totally agree, in fact it has been said that to achieve happiness you need a goal to aim for that you never quite reach. I went through a time when I felt I had done all I set out to achieve and then after that I felt as if my life had lost its purpose. I was never terribly ambitious so didn't just fight on to achieve a grander, better paid job or anything like that. I was single and thought I would be so forever and many friends had moved away or settled down. It felt like it was getting difficult just to keep going. I also like to go outside, walking in the countryside always helps lift my mood and my favourite thing is to climb the hills from where I can see half the country spread out. That has always helped to put things in perspective for me, especially if any person is causing me trouble, from up there I can really see how tiny and insignificant they are!
1 person likes this
• United Kingdom
7 Dec
I agree about having different aspects of life. I lnow know some people are happy to put all their energy and focus into just one or two things, but I do think most of us need a wider combination. Not too wide, of course, as taking on too much can bring about it's own problems. If we have different things going on in our lives, it does make things easier to handle when one thing goes wrong if everything else is going well. As you say, hopefully not everything will go wrong at once. I also find it helpful to have a routine. A flexible one, not one where you end up stuck in a rut. I love to get outside too. I have noticed that my mood is generally better in the summer!
1 person likes this