Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Stay Healthy With a Positive Attitude

Want an easy, inexpensive way to stay healthy? Try smiling and being positive about life. Prevention Magazine reports that over 30n studies have found that happiness helps boost the immune system and helps us live longer.

This make sense to me because I've found that if I let myself get stressed, I'm much more likely to catch a cold or other illness. Other studies have proven how harmful stress is to the heart and can lead to other diseases too.

How do you stay positive about life? It sounds easy but sometimes it's very difficult. Here are some of the things that have helped me:

1. Let go of the past - This includes thinking and worrying over past mistakes, people who have "done you wrong," old resentments and pain. It took me nearly 55 years to learn to do this but once I was truly able to let go of the past, forgive others and refuse to harbor grudges, it opened up whole new realms in my relationships with others and allowed me to love them for who they were, not who I wanted them to be.

If you find you are weighted down by the past, try reading Wayne Dyer's book 10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace. This book literally changed my life and the way I think.

Remember, holding onto anger is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die.

2. Focus on the present and live mindfully - This helps to calm worry and living in the past. You are alive and breathing right now and all can be well in this moment of your life. Another Wayne Dyer quote from the Course in Miracles "At any given moment, I am free to choose and I choose peace."

3. Try relaxing exercises like yoga or tai chi and set aside time for meditation. It the word meditation scares you, just try sitting quietly for 10 minutes a day, listining to nice music and allowing your mind to drift. Once you find that calm center within yourself, you can go back to it whenever something upsetting or hurtful happens.

4. Seek out happy people. Don't take part in "pity parties" and complaint sessions with friends and family. Try to talk about happy, upbeat subjects.

5. Turn off the news if it upsets you. You can't change the world. If you have a cause you can do something about, throw yourself into what you CAN do.

6. Take time for hobbies or things you enjoy - just for the sake of doing them. Go for walks, play with your dog. Do things without a purpose once in a while.

7. Smile and laugh! - Rent silly movies or find some children or pets to play with. Kids and dogs live totally in the moment and we could learn a few lessons from them.

8. If bad things are going on, allow yourself at least some time to be like Scarlet O'hara and say "I'll think about that tomorrow."

Whatever you do, remember happiness is a choice we make or don't make. You can choose to be happy no matter what your circumstances because it comes from within, not without. So there's no use looking for happiness anyplace but right in your own heart.

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