It’s a perfectly timed pleasure to welcome author Abbie Headon to the blog to share her tips on bringing positivity to the fore.
First things first: I’ve written a book called The Power of Yes, about helping you embrace positivity, but (a) I am a normal person and (b) I sometimes need a boost to my own ‘yes’ reserves – and in fact, that’s why I wanted to write the book, because I believe in my heart that all of us can become more positive about life with the help of simple, practical tips. Here are ten to get you started:
Bring back that ‘first date feeling’.
If you’re in a long-term relationship, it’s easy to get into a regular routine, and sometimes we lose a little magic along the way. Remember when you first met: you had no backstory, no fixed expectations of what your partner was like. Bring back some of that initial sparkle by suggesting new ideas and activities that you can do together, and being spontaneous.
Find inspiration in new surroundings.
If you want to think new thoughts, it’s worth going somewhere new to find them! But you don’t have to go very far to find inspiration – just take a different route to work or head out in a new direction on your lunchbreak. Philosophers have known for centuries that being around trees and plants is good for the spirit, so green surroundings are also great places to stimulate your creativity.
Be your own style guru.
Nobody can tell you what to wear – and one of the perks of getting older is that we care a LOT less about what others think of us. Be bold, and give yourself permission to be playful – try on that patterned shirt you’ve been admiring,or those boots with the neon laces.
Embrace exercise that you enjoy.
First, find your why: do you want to feel fitter and stronger, take on a challenge or learn a new skill, for example? Then eliminate as many obstacles as possible, by choosing a gym near your home or packing your sports gear the night before. Finally, keep track of your progress and celebrate your achievements!
Steer clear of positivity vampires.
Anyone who is keen to tell you all about your limitations is in fact telling you far more about their own, so give their opinions the time they deserve: none at all. Someone with constructive advice to give will frame it in an encouraging way to guide you forward on your path.A true friend won’t fill your life with can’ts.
Keep your home ship-shape with teamwork.
There’s nothing like a family for creating mess, and it’s not your job to keep things tidy. Try sharing out tasks between every family member, or turn tidying into an activity you all do together for half an hour every weekend. For your sanity, shift the responsibility away from just yourself and onto everyone who shares your space.
Give yourself a gadget break.
Most of us spend more time online than we realise, but switching off brings huge benefits. Instead of looking at everyone else’s carefully curated ‘best bits’ gallery and feeling the dreaded FOMO, you’ll have time to reconnect with your own creativity and focus in on your own goals and ambitions.
Use the power of networks.
The world is full of people who can help you achieve your goals: you just need to connect with them. Whether it’s a group of colleagues at work, an industry meetup such as a conference or informal drinks night, or your circle of friends, it’s worth reaching out. You’ll learn a lot, you may be able to help others, and you’re bound to receive useful support too.
Become a negotiations ninja.
Negotiating can be stressful, especially at work, but with some practical tips under your belt it will be a lot easier. First and foremost, stay calm. Then focus on a win–win outcome, and be prepared to compromise on less important aspects of the deal. Finally, keep the conversation going: if you don’t get what you want this time, arrange a date to review the decision. Never say never!
Dare to fail. When you start a new project, it could be a hit or a miss – but you’ll never know unless you take the plunge. Don’t fear failure: instead, see it as a learning opportunity, showing you how to fine-tune your original model before you start again. We all have the choice to let failure stop us or turn it into something that helps us achieve success in the long run.