That’s a bold title, isn’t it? Changing your outlook on life, huh. Okay, you read, with skepticism, a slight slant towards that ever so minimal scoff. It’s ok, I understand.
I was thinking most of yesterday, and today, too (which is the anniversary of a pretty major family event), that this time last year I was emerging from a terribly, terribly dark place. I’m not going to throw around the word ‘depressed’, because I wasn’t formally diagnosed, and I think that the word is too heavy, but I was immensely sad a lot of the time. I’d still go out and do things that needed to be done, but I felt so incredibly, emotionally blank.
Now, I’ve done a complete 180. I’ve been told by people that it’s like I’m an entirely different person (I’m not), and my family are so relieved they have their daughter/sister/niece back. In a relatively short space of time, I’ve drastically changed how I view life, and good things have happened (and keep happening). It’s one of the best things I’ve ever ever ever done.
I don’t want this to sound super preachy, I do still have days where I’m a bit ‘eh things could be better’ but they are few and far between. Also, there are no real ‘quick fixes’ for this. It takes dedication and sometimes systematic elimination – but it’s worth it in the end. ♥
How to change your outlook on life:
1: ask yourself if you are happy.
If the answer is yes, then stop here? Congrats! But be truthful. If no, then this is the first, real, true step to changing how you view life and everything that comes with it. You have to admit to yourself that your current situation is not fine. It isn’t fine and you’ve been putting up with ‘fine’ or ‘adequate’ or just flat out ‘awful’ for too long.
2: quote yourself stupid
I spent a lot of time on my journey to… now, really, reading and rereading ‘inspirational quotes’. Sure this sounds like such a pretentious thing to do – but I found the more time I spent looking at words that made me feel like a human was like that little extra push I needed to zen myself out and carry on.
‘When something goes wrong in your life, just yell “PLOT TWIST!” and move on’ is by far my favourite quote ever. I’m actually finding it difficult to put into words just how much it has helped me.
3: realise you decide how you react to something
I saw a picture or an infographic – I forget which – on two smiley faces and their reaction to something negative. One let the negativity engulf them and they turned from a happy face to a sad face. The other let the negativity dissolve on their forehead and remained smiling. And right then and there I decided to do that. Pick and choose what made me sad. There are so many reasons to be happy that one, tiny, insignificant thing does not need to ruin that. One person, is not allowed to ruin that.
It is not the easiest thing to be constantly positive. But you can sure as hell try. I’m not saying be optimistic all the time, there is a difference between being positive and overly optimistic. Positivity is not going into something thinking the best will happen, it’s going into thinking that it would be amazing if it could. And if it doesnt? Well now you know for the next time. Learn and go at it again with new experience. See the good parts of the not-quite-ace things.
In my experience, positivity is a magnet for opportunity. People want to work/socialise with someone who is enthusiastic (another side effect of positivity) over someone who is just ‘meh’ about everything. If you can’t surround yourself with positive people initially, be that positive person. People will want to be around you.
5: failure and rejection is ok
Hands up if you’re terrified of failure and/or rejection? SAME. Or I was. It used to be a debilitating thing for me. I’d avoid doing things because of the fear I’d do it wrong or just fuck up so monumentally the embarrassment would be too much to deal with. It got to the point I wouldn’t wear clothes I liked. Sad, right? I look back now and think: christ Fii. But it was very real and very tiring and, well. Now? I’ve realised that – as Dita Von Teese quite rightly said – you could be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world and there is still going to be somebody who hates peaches.
It is what it is. Don’t fear not succeeding the first time – it takes effort to try and effort is commendable. Don’t fear being rejected – someone who appreciates you will come along, or you have different talents that would be better suited elsewhere.
Be that good energy. Compliments are free and love grows exponentially. Bring a little bit of kindness to someone else, it’ll make you feel better. Perhaps restore your faith in yourself. Be genuine though.
7: you are worth every good thing you achieve
Everything you put work into, you deserve. If you are proud of an achievement, be proud of that achievement and learn how to appreciate your own efforts. Once you realise your true worth as a person, from your successes and your failures, you’ll stop letting people off for tossing backhanded ‘compliments’ at you, or throwing shade on your achievements.
8: stay humble
No one likes an arrogant ass. Recognition that you are doing pretty ace, but still have room to learn and grow is one of the things that really changed how I look at life. There are areas for me – as there are with yours – that I’m pretty ace at, and have a talent for. But there are also areas that need improvement, and continually improving yourself to be a better person is a really good thing.
Be kind and humble. Love yourself and toot your own trumpet within reason, since who else will? But recognise that you’re not the second coming and that you can learn from and grow with other people.
I really hope that these things that helped me help some of you going through tough times. If all else fails, stick on some music, close the curtains, and just dance around. Be silly. Let go of everything for half an hour – you may feel an absolute lemon for doing it, but that has helped me more times than I can count.♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
Do you have any tips on how to change how you view life? Let me know ~ and I hope you’re having a very happy Easter Sunday if you celebrate.