Why Being Positive Influences Your Wellness
Positive thinking can make you feel better in the moment, but is it likely to make you feel better and happier over a longer period of time?
There are links between how we feel and our physical wellness, so while thinking positively may not be a substitute for exercise or a balanced diet, there is a definite connection between staying positive and your wellness.
Beating Yourself Up Only Makes It Worse
We usually think that stress develops from external factors such as work or traffic, but a surprising amount of the stresses in our lives comes from within.
When a difficult situation arises, or even if we anticipate a difficult situation, instead of thinking positively, some of us tend to criticise ourselves and begin visualising ways that things could go wrong.
While it is important to understand possible downsides of a situation in order to formulate constructive solutions, if we spend too much time thinking about the dangers of the specific situation or all of the ways in which we may be unprepared to deal with them, this can drastically increase unhealthy stress levels.
This stress can make it harder for you to think straight and control the situation, but too much stress over a long period of time can contribute to health problems including weight gain and heart disease.
The next time that you start to worry about a situation, look at it from a perspective of trying to find ways to make the situation go right rather than thinking about the ways in which it could get worse.
This small instance of positive thinking will lower your stress levels, making you feel more comfortable and helps you to maintain control over the situation.
Positivity Helps You To Avoid Other Coping Mechanisms
Stressing about negative situations can do more than prevent you from solving the problem at hand, it can also make it worse and create problems of its own.
When we are stressed or otherwise upset about something, many of us can too easily slip into making unhealthy choices, whether that’s emotional eating and turning to a comfort food or engaging in drug use. Even legal ones like tobacco and alcohol can have a negative impact on your health pretty quickly.
Thinking on the bright side can protect your health from the primary effects of stress, as well as these additional problems that may manifest when you are tempted to manage your stress in unhealthy ways.
A Lack of Positivity Can Make You Sick
It was already discussed above that too much anxiety over too long a period can be bad for the heart. This can be partially due to those secondary concerns mentioned in the last paragraph, like diet. However, it can also be due to stress itself alone.
Stress is a complicated phenomenon in the body, involving a host of chemicals being created and released into your blood.
This cascade of events evolved in humans to help us run from predators or fight invaders, but a faster pulse and slowed digestion don’t help us get over the loss of a loved one, or the frenzy of filling in your tax return on time.
Our ancestors needed the stress response to escape danger, but in today’s modern world it tends to stick around longer than required. This can really be a draw on your body’s resources, and can even prevent it from fighting infection like it is supposed to.
Trying to think positive can be good for your emotional health, but it might also help you to avoid any bugs and viruses that might be going around.
Looking on the bright side can at times be difficult, but if you don’t take it seriously it will be impossible.
While some people avoid trying very hard to be positive because they think that it’s just a bunch of feel-good nonsense, hopefully this article has helped you to understand some of the biological benefits of positive thinking.