Positive Thinking Pocketbook - Gill Hasson - E-Book

Positive Thinking Pocketbook E-Book

Gill Hasson

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Beschreibung

Think your way to a more positive life Positive thinking is an approach and a set of skills that we can all learn. But it's not just about how and what you think; you've got to do something! In a range of situations, positive thinking needs to be followed by positive action. The good news is that whatever life has thrown at you in the past and whatever is you want to achieve in the future, the Positive Thinking Pocketbook will help you think and behave more positively. Inside, you'll find out how to use tips, techniques and advice on creating a positive mindset and developing your positive thinking. Next, you'll find out how to apply that positive thinking to a range of potentially difficult situations. * Little approachable exercises make it easy to get started * Full of scenarios, ideas, advice, tips and techniques * Learn how to overcome negative thinking, get motivated and stay motivated * Discover how to make positive thinking a habit Whenever you want a shot of positivity, simply pick out a few ideas, tips and techniques that appeal to you and give them a try!

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Table of Contents

COVER

INTRODUCTION

PART 1: POSITIVE THINKING VS NEGATIVE THINKING

UNDERSTANDING THE POWER OF POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE THINKING

UNDERSTANDING THE POSITIVE INTENTIONS OF NEGATIVE THINKING

UNDERSTANDING NARROW AND BROAD THINKING

RECOGNISING THE WAY YOU'RE THINKING

RECOGNISING COGNITIVE DISTORTIONS

REWIRING YOUR BRAIN

CHALLENGING YOUR THOUGHTS: ARE THEY HELPFUL?

CHALLENGING YOUR THOUGHTS: ARE YOU CERTAIN?

IDENTIFYING ALTERNATIVE PERSPECTIVES

MOVING ON TO POSITIVE THOUGHTS

PART 2: POSITIVE THINKING AND POSITIVE ACTION

HAVING GOALS

IDENTIFYING YOUR OPTIONS

TAKING POSITIVE STEPS

USING POSITIVE VISUALISATION

BEING FLEXIBLE

GETTING MOTIVATED

STAYING MOTIVATED

USING POSITIVE BODY LANGUAGE

PART 3: MAKING POSITIVE THINKING A HABIT

BEING APPRECIATIVE

BEING KIND

BEING GENEROUS

MAKING A CONTRIBUTION

GIVING COMPLIMENTS

INDULGING IN SMALL PLEASURES

USING MORE POSITIVE LANGUAGE

SAYING ‘BUT’ OR ‘AND’

SAYING ‘SHOULD’ OR ‘COULD’

BEING MORE CONFIDENT

BEING WITH POSITIVE PEOPLE

CONSUMING POSITIVE NEWS

PART 4: POSITIVE THINKING FOR DIFFICULT SITUATIONS

MANAGING DISAPPOINTMENTS AND SETBACKS

BEING STUCK IN A JOB YOU DON'T LIKE

Note

SURVIVING TRAUMA AND TRAGEDY

DEALING WITH BEING BULLIED

HAVING COURAGE

COPING WITH CRITICISM

FORGIVING

CHANGING YOUR MIND

DEALING WITH GUILT

MOVING ON FROM REGRET

COPING WITH WORRY AND ANXIETY

MANAGING ENVY

MAKING NEW FRIENDS

TAKING RISKS

HAVING A POSITIVE BODY IMAGE

AVOIDING THE BLAME GAME

BEING NON-JUDGEMENTAL

COPING WITH CHANGE

ANSWERS TO IN PRACTICE QUESTIONS IN PART ONE

Understanding the positive intentions of negative thoughts

Recognising cognitive distortions

MORE POSITIVE THINKING QUOTES

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT

Guide

Cover

Table of Contents

Begin Reading

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E1

POSITIVE THINKING POCKETBOOK

LITTLE EXERCISES FOR A HAPPY AND SUCCESSFUL LIFE

Gill Hasson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This edition first published 2019.

© 2019 Gill Hasson

Registered office

John Wiley & Sons Ltd, The Atrium, Southern Gate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 8SQ, United Kingdom

For details of our global editorial offices, for customer services and for information about how to apply for permission to reuse the copyright material in this book please see our website at www.wiley.com.

Gill Hasson has asserted her right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, to be identified as the author of this Work.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, except as permitted by the UK Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, without the prior permission of the publisher.

Wiley publishes in a variety of print and electronic formats and by print-on-demand. Some material included with standard print versions of this book may not be included in e-books or in print-on-demand. If this book refers to media such as a CD or DVD that is not included in the version you purchased, you may download this material at http://booksupport.wiley.com. For more information about Wiley products, visit www.wiley.com.

Designations used by companies to distinguish their products are often claimed as trademarks. All brand names and product names used in this book are trade names, service marks, trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners. The publisher is not associated with any product or vendor mentioned in this book.

Limit of Liability/Disclaimer of Warranty: While the publisher and author have used their best efforts in preparing this book, they make no representations or warranties with the respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this book and specifically disclaim any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. It is sold on the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering professional services and neither the publisher nor the author shall be liable for damages arising herefrom. If professional advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Names: Hasson, Gill, author.

Title: Positive thinking pocketbook : little exercises for a happy and successful life / Gill Hasson.

Description: Hoboken : Capstone, 2019. |

Identifiers: LCCN 2018046260 (print) | LCCN 2018052956 (ebook) | ISBN 9780857087515 (Adobe PDF) | ISBN 9780857087409 (ePub) | ISBN 9780857087546 (paperback) | ISBN 9780857087515 (ePDF)

Subjects: LCSH: Self-actualization (Psychology) | Positive psychology. | BISAC: SELF-HELP / General.

Classification: LCC BF637.S4 (ebook) | LCC BF637.S4 H368 2019 (print) | DDC 155.2—dc23

LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2018046260

Cover Design and Illustration: Wiley

INTRODUCTION

Thinking: the talking of the soul with itself. Plato

Is it true that if you can change your thinking, you can change your life?

Yes. It's true.

Anything and everything can be explained in both positive and negative ways. Negative thoughts interpret ideas or events in a pessimistic way and can cause you to get stuck in feelings such as fear, anxiety, disappointment, guilt and resentment. Positive thoughts, meanwhile, can positively influence how you feel and how you respond to situations. In a range of situations and circumstances in your life, positive thinking encourages you to feel capable and optimistic.

A couple of years ago I wrote a book titled Positive Thinking: Find happiness and achieve your goals through the power of positive thought. A number of people got in touch to tell me how much they'd gained from the book; that one way or another, they could see how learning to think positively would be a game changer for them – that positive thinking could effect a significant shift in their current way of doing and thinking about things and change their lives for the better.

Readers said that they particularly liked the practical activities and exercises, tips, techniques and strategies. This book, Positive Thinking Pocketbook includes many of those activities and exercises, tips, techniques and strategies.

It's the fourth in my series of Pocketbooks. Just like the others, with Positive Thinking Pocketbook you can, as one reader wrote ‘dip in and out of it and read a page – any page – at a time, so there's none of that discipline needed to sit down and read a whole book properly. Good for lazy people like me!’

There are four parts to this book.

Part One: Positive thinking vs negative thinking

Part Two: Positive thinking and positive action

Part Three: Making positive thinking a habit

Part Four: Positive thinking for difficult situations

Part One explains the difference between positive and negative thinking and explains why we think in negative ways. It suggests ways to recognise and challenge negative thinking and to move on to more positive ways of thinking.

Can you achieve and get what you want in life simply by thinking positive thoughts? No, you can't. Positive thinking alone won't get you what you want; you can't just think about what you want and how you want things to be and hope to attract it. Instead, positive thinking means being proactive; in a range of situations and circumstances, positive thinking needs to be followed by positive action. The chapters in Part Two explain what you can do to turn positive thoughts into positive outcomes.

Positive thinking requires practice. The more you think and behave in positive ways, the sooner it will become your normal way of thinking and behaving. As well as suggesting positive ways to relate to other people, Part Three explains how small, simple changes to the words you use can make a big difference to the way you think – they can really help you think and behave in helpful, positive ways.

So, does all this mean that if you become a positive thinker, life will always be good? No. Having a positive, optimistic outlook doesn't mean that you are always feeling good and happy. People who are positive still have worries, they still feel sad, disappointed, guilty, angry and so on. But their positive outlook prevents them from getting stuck in unhelpful thoughts and enables them to manage difficulties in a way that doesn't drag them down even further.

Part Four recognises that life is often difficult and sometimes very tough. And that's when you really need positive thinking. In Part Four you'll find a range of difficult scenarios and positive helpful suggestions for managing difficult emotions, disappointments and setbacks, trauma and tragedy.

Positive Thinking Pocketbook has over 100 simple tips, techniques, ideas and suggestions for a wide range of situations where positive thinking can really make a difference. Keep this book in your bag or your pocket for whenever you need to feel more positive. You'll find that the tips, techniques, ideas and suggestions in this book really can help you think and act positively.

As the musician and singer Willie Nelson said, ‘Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you'll start having positive results.’

PART 1POSITIVE THINKING VS NEGATIVE THINKING

UNDERSTANDING THE POWER OF POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE THINKING

Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you'll start having positive results. —Willie Nelson

Positive thinking can be understood in terms of an ‘explanatory style’. Your explanatory style is how you explain situations and events; how you interpret, make sense and meaning of how and why things do and don't happen.

When you interpret an event, a situation or circumstances in a positive way, you take a favourable view of past, present and future events, situations and circumstances. You're likely to look for the best in other people, and to view yourself and your abilities in a positive light. You're optimistic – you expect a favourable outcome for future events. You're not unrealistic though – you know that things don't always work out. But if things go wrong – when there are problems – you don't dwell on them; instead you look for positive solutions. You also look for the silver linings; you recognise that often, challenges and difficult situations have a positive aspect to them.

However, if you have a negative way of explaining and interpreting things, you resign yourself to having no control over or solutions to problems. Negative thinkers are pessimistic – they tend to see and anticipate difficulties and problems. In a variety of situations, if you think in negative ways, you may see yourself as a victim; you feel that you've been deceived or cheated and you look to lay blame when things go wrong. Even when good things happen, negative thinkers tend to notice and dwell on the negative parts – the not so good aspects – of a situation.

Let negative thoughts take a hold, and in a variety of situations, you're likely to feel overwhelmed and powerless. But if you can think positively, you'll feel able to manage and do well.

In Practice

It takes but one positive thought when given a chance to survive and thrive to overpower an entire army of negative thoughts. —Dr Robert H. Schuller

What you think and say to yourself can influence what you can and can't do, as shown by this simple exercise. Try it for yourself. You'll need another person to help.

Part 1:

Ask the other person to stand and extend their dominant arm horizontally, at shoulder level.

Ask them to think of a time when they failed something – a test, an exam or a job interview, for example. Then ask them to think negative thoughts about themselves: ‘I'm weak. I'm stupid. I'm hopeless. I'm pathetic. I'm no good at anything. I can't do this.’

Ask the person to continue thinking these thoughts. Tell them you are going to stand behind them and attempt to pull their dominant arm down to their side. Ask them to resist you pulling their arm down.

Part 2:

Now, ask the person to hold up their dominant arm again at shoulder level.

This time, ask them to think of a time when they succeeded and did well at something – passed a test or exam, achieved something at work, did well in a sport. Then ask them to think positive things about themselves: ‘I do my best. I can do well. I am a good person. I am strong. I can do this.’

Ask them to repeat the positive statements to themselves while you attempt to pull their arm down to your side. Ask them to resist the pull.

Typically, in the first part of the exercise, the person's arm is more likely to give way to your pull. Negativity overwhelms them and it's not easy for them to be strong. However, when the person's thoughts are positive, their body has the ability to resist the force that's pulling their arm down. They are more likely to stay strong and resist your pull.

UNDERSTANDING THE POSITIVE INTENTIONS OF NEGATIVE THINKING

You are what you think. And what you think, you are. —Author unknown

If positive thinking is the most helpful, beneficial way to think, why, then, do we think in negative ways? Negative thoughts are integral parts of emotions such as fear, anxiety, disappointment, guilt, regret, resentment and jealousy. These emotions often include thoughts such as ‘I can't do it’. ‘It's not fair’. ‘I'm such an idiot’. ‘It's their fault’. ‘Nothing ever goes right for me’. ‘I wish I hadn't done that’.

Because emotions such as fear, worry and guilt make us feel bad, we usually think of them as ‘negative emotions’. And yet these emotions, like all other emotions, do actually have a positive intent.

Take, for example, the emotion of guilt. Typically, the thoughts that accompany guilt are ‘I've screwed up, I shouldn't have done that, it's my fault. I feel bad about what I did’. How can this way of thinking be positive? Well, the positive intent of guilt is to prompt you to recognise your wrongdoing and to do something to put it right or make up for what you did. If, though, you simply wallow in your guilt, berate yourself for what you did wrong or ignore or deny how you feel, then your thoughts and actions (or lack of action) remain negative. They do you no good.

The positive intentions of ‘negative’ emotions act in the same way as the positive intention of physical pain. If you touch something really hot, the pain makes you pull away; it feels bad, but the positive intention of that pain is to protect you. It's the same with emotional pain – it can prompt you to think of positive ways you can take positive action.

And not only can an emotion such as guilt make you feel bad and prompt you to respond positively, the fact that you know that guilt can make you feel bad can actually motivate you, too. It can motivate you not to do something in future that could result in you feeling guilty!

In Practice

For there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so. —Shakespeare

Know that every emotion has a positive purpose. No emotion is bad or pointless. When you experience a ‘negative’ emotion, if you understand the positive purpose behind that ‘negative’ emotion, it can help you think more positively about the situation and do something positive about it.

The positive intention of sadness, for example, is to slow you down and allow you time to take in and accept what has happened. Sadness then helps you to adjust, to get used to changed, different circumstances. Disappointment is a form of sadness. The positive purpose of disappointment is to prompt you to identify what went wrong and to work out what needs to be adjusted or changed in order to lessen the chance of similar disappointments in the future.

Think about it.

Anger is a natural reaction to feeling wronged by something or someone. It's a reaction to unfairness, dishonesty, being treated badly, being let down, being lied to or being ignored. So, what do you think might be the positive purpose of anger?

Jealousy happens when you feel that someone or something is threatening something you value – you worry that someone will take what you have. What do you think the positive intention of jealousy could be?

Embarrassment is the feeling of something improper or ridiculous having happened either to yourself or to someone else. What do you think is the positive intention of embarrassment?

Boredom happens when you lack interest in what's happening – the situation you're in is dull and tedious. What positive aspect might there be, do you think, to boredom? (Answers at the back of the book.)

Try to learn the positive intentions of a range of ‘negative’ emotions. Then, in any one situation where you experience a ‘negative’ emotion, you'll be less likely to get stuck in the emotion and be more inclined to think and respond in a positive way.

UNDERSTANDING NARROW AND BROAD THINKING

Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be. —Abraham Lincoln

There is, then, a positive purpose to the ‘negative’ thoughts that come with emotions such as guilt, fear, anger, sadness and regret. The positive purpose is to focus your attention on whatever ‘negative’ situation you might be in so that it becomes the only