Choose Living with the Glass Half Full over Half Empty

If you are in a struggle to stay positive and optimistic as you go through the daily grind here are ways to proactively improve your mind and when done consistently will create the habits the make for permanent change.

1. Get down and pray – whether you are religious or not it truly doesn’t matter. The act of surrendering in the form of the ritual of prayer is liberating. Asking a higher source of any kind of strength and love is a welcoming feeling.

2. Gratitude list – write down 3-10 things you are grateful for each morning. This will set the day upright and can be an immediate mind shifter to move you in a more positive and optimistic direction for the day.

3. Win the hour – Doc Gooden who has been through his share of adversity told me when I had a chance to meet him that it’s all about focusing on the hour. Breaking up your day with 1 thing you want to accomplish each hour is an effective time management technique. It will give you a sense of accomplishment and move you towards a much more positive frame of mind. It is a great way to practice mindfulness and access the power of now. And if you are getting caught up in the chaos of the day, look at the clock and whatever time is left in the hour reset yourself to determine what you want to accomplish before the hour is up.

4. Put the emphasis on You and not I – There is an adage in the sales profession that says people want to buy but they do not want to be sold. Put the emphasis on other people in your communication style and approach life. From a spiritual standpoint when you give more you actually get more. Taking your mind off of yourself or in the case of sales the features and benefits of the product you are pitching and making it more about how the customer can achieve results by putting emphasis on the word You. And to really lock in the communication state the person’s name several times while you speak because we love to hear our names said out loud.

5. Get moving throughout the day – There are many exercise tools that you can use throughout the day including your own body. For push-ups, I like the perfect push-ups products. A large exercise ball to sit on is great t build up your core. Bands can strengthen shoulders and biceps. Squats and wall holds are great to strengthen your legs. Kettle Bells give a quick weight training workout for all body parts. Exercising throughout the day gives you energy, clears the mind and in is a productive way to multi-task so when the “work day” whistle blows you’ll have a good feeling that you also have worked out your body physically. Set a goal to say 3 sets of push-ups, 30 minutes sitting on exercise ball, 50 squats and 3 Kettle Bell exercises each day for 10 days. Watch the addictive endorphins habit emerge from the consistency of sticking with it.

6. Kaizen – Is a Japanese term used for making very small gains that when compounded lead to much bigger accomplishments. Recognizing that you are getting just a little better each day is a great way to put things in perspective and not be so reactionary to life’s challenges in work and personal daily living.

7. Your word choices – How you communicate with yourself and others is reflected in the way you use language to connect with the outer and inner world you live in. Becoming observant of your words is a great way to practice mindfulness where you are not necessarily looking to change how you speak or “beat yourself”. Rather it’s about objectively recognizing the words you use and making mental or actual written notes of how you communicate. You could track on paper every time you use certain words that are negative. Categorize words by Weak words (maybe, perhaps, probably), Words of Negation (Can’t, won’t) Words of Generalities (everything, should, never) and Filler Words (um, you know). By adjusting and observing your word choices you will start feeling different towards life and living. It is hard work at first and over time permanent changes will occur. As a bonus learn one new word each day to build your vocabulary. The famous NY Times writer Jimmy Breslin did this with little education as a youth.

8. Your energy levels: Certainly getting enough sleep and eating right contribute to how much energy you have. The energy levels here relate to what keeps you excited and motivated. Whether that is writing in a journal or blog, reading a book, meditating, breathing, doing a hobby or taking to a friend. Make sure you are scheduling a time to do these activities and then process afterward if you have more energy to go on with your work day tasks at hand. All of the living life half full techniques are intended to increase your energy.

Doc Gooden
Perfect Push-ups

Ascent Today Habit: Create a checklist in the morning that you can review at the end of the day on ways you are living life with the Glass half full and see how you did.