Welcome to this weekly online resource. Wellness professional Jo Foster, offers self care tips through her insights on mindfulness and positive psychology, her weekly online yoga classes and nutritious recipe recommendations.
This week we will recap on some of what we have learned about optimism. Enjoy!
Try. Make mistakes. Learn. Repeat : That is the road to change.
This week we're recapping weeks 4-6 on our journey to optimism and are reminding ourselves why;
- "Not taking it personally" provides us with immunity to the pessimism of others
- optimism isn't always the right approach, and
- why you can't fool yourself into optimism.
What we hear and what we say isn't always true
When we relay our opinions to others, we typically do this in good faith that our perspective is "true". However, whilst it may be true in light of all your experiences and knowledge it may be false to others who have different experience and different knowledge that shapes their perspective.
So in all interactions we must remember the view point may be skewed. This provides is with a great opportunity to challenge our own perspectives and perhaps learn, but ultimately we must have the confidence to think for ourselves and make our own decisions on what is "true".
Being optimistic is having the ability to preserve your own value and optimism and let the negative or pessimistic moods of others be their own and not yours.
When pessimism, hurt and fear are present, the best response is empathy and realism first
When you, a friend, colleague or loved on is facing adversity, sometimes sticking a smile on, pointing out the positives and forcing optimistic thinking are not appropriate or productive. In fact they optimism here can be dismissive and disrespectful.
Whilst "not taking it personally" encourages us to develop immunity to the pessimism of others, it must be respected and treated with empathy and patience. Positivity can be thought privately and shared with others perhaps further down the line once space to think and feel have been allowed for.
When you are facing adversity, give yourself the space to think, feel and sleep. Do this without judgement or pressure to move too quickly past the pain.
When you are ready to move forward, be realistic and optimistic at the same time. Remember the 5 states of mind; the time spent in each should be kept in equal balance to achieve this.
1. True perspective of the past, present and future,
2. False perspective of the past, present and future,
Hope is nothing without belief
Blind optimism can lead to dangerous decisions and can make a bad situation worse. In week-one we talked about the art of hope; Having hope in the unknown is difficult and sadly there is no crystal ball to provide us with clarity in the future. But looking into the past, sometimes from a different perspective, may reveal the hope and belief that you need to trust in what is to come. Past successes, recovery from challenges, joy from the unexpected, this is where our memory can forge a powerful case to bring us through adversity with hope AND belief.
You will notice, that the link here is not for a lemon water recipe! I think we can all figure out how to make lemon water. (I popped the next best lemony thing in the link, so if the idea of lemon water bores you to tears, try that recipe instead!)
Lemons are loaded with vitamin C and antioxidants, so great for the immune system and protecting against cancer. They also help neutralise uric acid in the gut, which in turn helps protect against kidney stones and are great for relieving aching joints and improving muscle health.
So why not mix up your hot drink regime and swap out a coffee or tea for a cup of hot water and lemon.
Tip: To have a ready stock of lemons, buy a big bag of them, cut them into slices and freeze them. Then you when you pop one in your mug of hot water when ever you fancy something warm and refreshing.