Make Optimism Your Way of Life

A YES in the mind is a YES for life! Discover the skills to see the brighter side of life in any situation.

Warmth and coldness, happiness and sadness, success and failures – dualities coexist in life. The sign of optimism is the ability to sail through the dualities with a smile while keeping your focus on what you have set out to achieve. But how often have we been able to control our mind and keep it centered? This skill can be nurtured when we give our minds the time and space to decelerate and rest for a while. Twenty minutes of meditation can make this easy for you.

Discover five unique ways of staying upbeat through the ups and downs with meditation:

1. Make Your Mind Your Best Friend

Answer this simple question: What tells you that the sky is blue and the leaves are green? What makes you differentiate between the good and the bad? It is the mind that says, "failures are bad and success is good". It is the same mind that says, "I am worthless", "I am a jerk", or "I am a loser". Once you realize that it is the mind that makes judgments and labels things, turning things in your favor becomes easier, and we do this by befriending the mind.

But how?! How do we make our mind our friend?! A friend is one who supports you in the way you want to be supported. If you want to feel happy and the mind supports you, your mind becomes your friend. For this, you have to first become aware that you are larger than your mind. This awareness comes when you meditate. And when you meditate, your mind is naturally settled. It is calm, rested, peaceful, happy, energized, aware, calm, and enthusiastic and all this happens naturally with meditation. When your mind becomes your friend, you will obviously make it think only the positive.

Tips For You

1 – Whenever you see yourself getting into a cycle of negative thoughts, simply remind yourself that it is not you who is thinking negative, it is your mind. And then tell your mind with conviction that all will be good. Your regular meditation will help you with this.

2 – Just believing that everything is going to be good makes you feel good. So, when you step out of your bed each morning, just say to yourself with a big smile, “Today is going to be a great day!!” Now, it is possible that when you say this, you might not feel it from within because you are not used to thinking in this manner, but say it nonetheless. The secret here is fake it till you make it, and you’ll be surprised to see that very soon you will start feeling and thinking positive.

3 – Check your food habits. Make sure you eat healthy, fresh, hygienic, and vegetarian food. Don’t overeat, and take food only when you feel hungry. Avoid junk food to the greatest extent possible.

2. Look At The Brighter Side Of The Situation

The glass is half full. Are you still seeing it as half empty? It is time for change!

The solution to every problem is in the opportunity it brings with itself, but at times we are so stressed with the problem that we stop looking for solutions. For example, the loss of a job is an opportunity to find a better job or start your enterprise.

When things don’t happen the way we want them to, it is an opportunity to discover something better than what we wanted. If you meditate regularly, you can develop the skill to keep a positive mindset.

Meditation helps you find the opportunity. For finding the opportunity, you need to be focused. To be focused, you need to be peaceful and calm, else you cannot work. And that’s what meditation does—it makes you peaceful. Twenty minutes of meditation every day gives you the mental strength to stand up to adversities and turn the situation in your favor.

Tips for You

1 – When a big problem appears before you, it is natural to feel negative and broken. Do not fight with these feelings or resist them, because the more you fight with them, the more they will come back to you (it’s similar to someone asking you to not think about a monkey. The more you resist, the more you will think about it). What you resist persists.
What you can do instead is simply close your eyes for five minutes and think about the good things that it can bring to you. List them down on a piece of paper, no matter how trivial they are, and then make an effort to focus on them.

2 – Give selfless service to anyone who needs it—it could be the littlest of things (like helping out a colleague) or something big (like doing something for your country). Selfless service (seva) goes a long way in building your strength and self-confidence. When you are high on confidence, you are high on energy, and that makes you high on optimism. This is because optimism is linked to high energy, which we also call the feel-good factor. Make sure you meditate after seva, else you risk burnout. In fact, meditating after seva will make your meditation deeper.

Read the third unique way to leading an optimistic life in the sequel to this article.

Written by Ravisha kathuria
Based on inputs from Bharathy harish, Sahaj Samadhi Meditation teacher