Before we talk about the benefits of being positive, let’s understand what it means to be positive.
Being positive is a way of thinking where your focus is on seeing yourself, people, and circumstances in the most favorable light. When a negative situation happens, you accept it. At the same time, you look for ways to solve the issue, look out for the lessons you could use, and find reasons why you will make it work. It is about having hope and confidence that you and things will turn out alright.
12 Benefits of Being Positive
1. Lowers the Risk of Premature Death
A study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health conducted between 2004 and 2012 involving 70,000 women found that optimism may reduce risk of dying prematurely among women. The data showed that “the most optimistic women had a 16% lower risk of dying from cancer; 38% lower risk of dying from heart disease; 39% lower risk of dying from stroke; 38% lower risk of dying from respiratory disease; and 52% lower risk of dying from infection.”
2. You Rewire Your Frontal Lobe
In Rewire Your Brain, John B. Arden writes, “By being positive and active, you’ll rewire your frontal lobes.”
When you shift your focus on the positive, you engage the frontal lobe. This action causes the frontal lobe to calm down the amygdala which overreacts with fear and anxiety. And by taking at least one simple action in addition to focusing on the positive, you intensify your ability on what to pay attention to.
Positive thoughts and feelings heighten the activity of the prefrontal cortex, which is part of the frontal lobe. In this state, you are able to improve your ability to think and analyze, enhance your creativity, and enable you to solve problems faster.
3. You Develop Perseverance
Perseverance means not giving up in spite of difficulty. Many people give up too soon when they face challenges. They say, “What’s the point? They see the long road ahead.
When you have a positive mindset, you are able see how far you have traveled and achieved. You remind yourself that what you need to do is to continue to take one step followed by another. It motivates you to go through tough times and to find answers instead of looking at the past and your problems.
4. You Radiate Positive Energy
People like to be around a positive person because their energy and outlook are optimistic. With a lot of negativity and challenges going on in everyone’s life, it feels good to be able to speak with you because you bring positive vibes, encourage others to be happy, and to accept life challenges as opportunities for growth.
Being a positive person makes you a better friend, parent, spouse, and leader. You are able to influence others because you gain their support and respect since your energy makes them feel positive.
5. It is Easier to Make a Mindset Shift
One of the benefits of being positive is in your ability to find the positive in a negative situation. It is easier for you to switch your mindset from seeing what’s wrong to what is right once have trained yourself and cultivate an optimistic attitude.
6. You Become More Tolerant and Less Judgmental
Being positive helps you avoid getting stressed out over things that shouldn’t matter. In your day-to-day interactions, you meet people with different attitudes and behaviors. Because of your positivity, you will be more tolerant and less judgmental toward them. When you have an optimistic outlook, you will choose to see the best in people and practice empathy.
7. Problem Solving Becomes Easier
It is easier to solve an issue when you have realistic optimism. You don’t deny that there is a problem and admit that you may have made a mistake. You don’t blame others because you take personal responsibility. Your focus will be on finding solutions and answers instead of ruminating and criticizing yourself and others.
Negativity keeps you stuck. Even though positive thinking does not guarantee success, there is a higher chance that you will find a solution to get out of your present situation and change your life.
8. You Develop Hope
Another one of the benefits of being positive is; you believe that there is hope. No matter how bad a situation is or how much you feel challenged, your outlook will enable you to see that there whatever is happening will soon past and something good will eventually happen. And because you look forward to something better, you will attempt to do at least one thing, no matter how small, to get yourself out of the tough situation.
9. You Take Criticism in Stride
Positive people will not allow negative people to stop them from moving or continuing with what they are doing. They see the big picture when others only see what is in front of them. They develop the mindset such that negativity from others won’t derail them from their goals. Of course they will feel hurt by criticism but the great thing is they have the determination to push themselves through it.
10. You Experience More Joy
Imagine if you were travelling to another country and you lost your passport. There is every reason to be upset. And there are actions you need to take to solve it. Would you let the incident spoil your vacation?
How you respond to the situation determines what the rest of your vacation will be. If you have a positive outlook, you accept the event as one of those unfortunate things that happen in life, take the necessary action, and move on.
So, be positive because it brings joy and happiness. If you are like most people, you want to feel happy more often. And one of the ways is to have a positive outlook toward life and people.
11. You Develop a Growth Mindset
With this mindset, you know that you can learn and become better. You are willing to see and make changes.
Some people never get their project started because they are not willing to accept that they have not enough knowledge and skill. By being positive you acknowledge your weaknesses, look at your strengths and are willing to take action to improve yourself and your life.
12. It is a Better Way to Live
Being positive is a better way to live because it encourages you to grow. Regardless of what other people might think, your outlook doesn’t mean you are denying or ignoring the bad or tough situation.
When you focus on the positive instead of the negative, you can move forward. When you take personal responsibility for your life, instead of finding faults and blaming others, you are able to manage your stress level.
Unpleasant things happen. You face disappointments in life. You fail. You make mistakes. You get angry, upset and annoyed by the way things are and how people react toward you, themselves and other people. Why make yourself unhappy worrying about other people’s behaviors and attitudes and things that you cannot control?
Whenever you feel challenged and can’t take it, think of the benefits of being positive. Remind yourself often that you cannot control people and situations. But, you can control the way you view them. While it is difficult at times to bear with what is happening, there are also wonderful things happening around you. Focus on that.