Let’s talk about how to have a positive start to your day by beginning each day with a positive mindset. Having a positive mindset can set up your whole day to be a positive one from the beginning.
What is a Positive Mindset?
If you are not sure what it means to have a positive mindset, here is the definition. Having a positive mindset means looking for the positive (or good) things in your life. And mindset means “a mental attitude or inclination” according to Merriam Webster’s dictionary. When you put the two words together, you get a mental attitude of looking for the positive in your life.
How do you start your day with a positive mindset?
Every day when you wake up you are given a new day with a blank slate. You can set the tone of your day by choosing what you want to allow into it.
So, if your day is a blank canvas, you can think about it as if your thoughts are the paint. You get to choose what you want to paint on your canvas (your mind). If you want to have positive thoughts (bright colors) or if you want to have negative thoughts (grey, muddy colors) can make a big difference in the painting’s look, right?
Your mind is the same way. By focusing on the positive thoughts, you create a different day than if you focus on the negative thoughts.
How do you start the day with positive thoughts?
To start the day with positive thoughts, you can use several different tools.
(1) Writing in a gratitude journal is one good way to start your day
After you wake up and before you start your day, you can take a few moments to think about all the people you are grateful for in your life. You can spend a few minutes listing out the big and small things you are thankful for in any journal or notebook – like a warm house or a really good cup of coffee. The smaller the things you focus on the easier it can be to do this exercise.
You can think to yourself: I’m grateful for the clean air I breathe, for the fact that I have food for breakfast, a shelter to live in, etc. When you are grateful for these smallest of things, you’ll soon find yourself in almost awe of the big things – like the love of the people you love.
And that is another good way to practice being grateful, is to think about all the people you have in your life. You can include:
- Spouse or Partner
- Work colleagues
Also take a moment to think about something you love and appreciate about all the important people in your life. You can also spend some time thinking about positive things that happened yesterday as well as anything positive you believe will happen today.
Practicing gratitude is all about appreciating the good things in our lives. Starting our day by thinking about all the things we have to be grateful for is a great way to set the tone for your day.
Being grateful makes us focus on all the good and pleasant things in our lives and that, in turn, improves our overall happiness.
(2) Use morning affirmations to have a more positive outlook
Using morning affirmations can be either something you create for yourself or you can use a book (so you don’t have to strain your brain first thing in the morning coming up with things). There are plenty of books with positive affirmations you can say that aren’t ones you will feel silly saying.
In general, any kind thought you have regarding yourself or the day you want to have will work. One of my favorite affirmations for myself is “I am enough”. That one seems to always make me pause and appreciate that I am more than all the things I do. I can just be.
A good book to try is by Louise Hay. It is called “Power Thoughts: 365 Daily Affirmations”.
(3) Focusing on the present moment for a positive start to your day
Focusing on the present moment can mean taking notice of anything that is happening right now. Start by taking a look around you.
What do you see – is the sun coming in the window? How about any animals around you? In my case, my dog is usually close by and seeing how calm she is, makes me feel calm.
What about other members of your family? What are they doing or not doing in my teenager’s case?
To really ground yourself in the present moment, you can focus on all of your senses: Sight, Sound, Smell, Taste, and Touch to really be present to what is happening right now.
(4) Get your day off to a good start with meditation time for yourself
One of the best ways to start your day is to practice meditation. You can use an app like “Calm” or “Headspace” (a review of the two apps is here “Is Calm or Headspace right for You?“.
There is also the Chopra app which I like to use. The Chopra app has different series of meditations.
One of them is “Meditations for the Heart” that includes topics like “Compassion”, “Self-Love” and “Forgiveness”. These are all topics that can help you to be kinder to yourself and elicit positive emotions towards ourselves.
What Do You Pay Attention to – Negative Thoughts vs. Positive Thoughts
Hopefully by now, you see some of the benefits of starting your day with a positive mindset rather than a negative one. I think we can all remember a time when we got up on the wrong side of the bed and started our day off with one long negative stream of thoughts.
Have you ever had a day turn out well when you allow yourself to go there in your mind? For me, when I have these kind of days and don’t do anything to try and stop it, my day just goes from bad to worse.
Stop the Negative Self-Talk which Leads to Negative Emotions
If your negative thinking habits are causing you to start your day with less than a positive attitude, you might want to read “When Stinky Thinking Moves In, How to Stop Negative Thoughts”. Negative thoughts can be really damaging to your day if you let them become all you focus your thoughts on.
As I think we’ve illustrated focusing on the negative thoughts in your head, allows them to multiply if you let them go unchecked. And soon, you find yourself experiencing negative emotions like sadness, anger, resentment, etc.
If you can kindly debate with yourself the validity of your negative thinking “Is this really the end of the world today if XYZ happened?”, you may be able to take your morning from bad to better then maybe even good.
So, to recap some bad ways to start your day: Have lots of negative thoughts and maybe make it worse by spending a lot of time on negative news or social media sites. Just kidding!
Start your Day in a Positive Way with these Habits
Choose one of the positive mindset ways above to get your day off to a great start. If you can spend your time on happy thoughts and fuel your body with a healthy breakfast, your odds of having a good start to your day increase.
Think of Good Things in Your Life
See if you can spend a few minutes early in the morning thinking about what you are thankful for. Gratitude can improve our mood and our feeling of being happy for the entire day.
What do you think about first thing in the morning? Whatever it is, ask yourself if it is worth your time thinking about and if it isn’t try to change it to something more worthy of your time.
Set Up Your Own Positive Mindset Morning Routine
It is possible to start your day off on a positive note with positive self-talk. Try to create a new morning ritual where you practice being grateful or even neutral as opposed to being negative.
It may take a while for this new habit to take effect. But by focusing on this positive mindset routine and practicing it the same time each morning (within reason), all of this will help you to form a new positive habit.
By setting yourself up for a great day everyday, you will find it gets easier over time. And that’s really the goal for the long run.
What if I’m Not a Morning Person?
If you aren’t a morning person, it is okay. Just do your best on a daily basis to look for the bright(er) side of things. You might just find you become more of a morning person with a more positive attitude as time goes on.
You want to be able to practice having a positive mindset in the morning effortlessly and without having to think about it. Once you are able to get to the point of not having to think about it, you will find it can have a huge impact on how happy and content you feel for the rest of the day.
Try having a positive mindset in the morning for a few weeks. Then take note of how your mental outlook changes by simply adding these little exercises to your mornings. Before long, it will be automatic. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to have a good day for most if not all days.
Positive Thinking Resources
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