Home » Life Skills Wiki » Positive Thinking

Positive Thinking

Personal Skills

Introduction:

You become what you think. If you believe you can do something you probably will. The moment you stop believing in yourself is the moment your quest will end. Positive thinking comes easily for some people but must be worked at for others. Positive thinking people are happier, healthier and more successful. Life is more fun. Learning occurs continuously and helps make you a better person.

Skill Definition:

  • I monitor my self-talk and can turn negative thoughts into positive ones.

Key Learning Points:

  • Surround yourself with people who make you a better person, those with positive thinking and attitudes.
  • You talk to yourself throughout the day and most of the time you aren’t even aware. Monitor your self-talk.
  • Most beliefs can be changed.

Faith Worldview:

  • “God gave you a mind, and He expects you to fill it with good things. When your mind is full of thoughts consistent with his love, your mind is exactly the way He means for it to be. When your heart is full of emotions that are consistent with his love, your emotions are healthy, and your heart is exactly the way God means for it to be.” Source: Christian Positive Thinking

Learning Path:

  • Maintain a journal of your self-talk for one or more of your typical days. How much is positive?
  • Practice various techniques and find one that works for you, e.g. monitoring self-talk, affirmations or visualization.
  • Develop an understanding of your emotions and their underlying beliefs. Practice finding and substituting positive beliefs.

Deeper Topics:

  • Self-talk. “Patterns of negative or positive self-talk often start in childhood. Usually, the self-talk habit is one that’s colored our thinking for years, and can affect us in many ways, influencing the experience of stress to our lives. However, any time can be a good time to change it! The first step toward change is to become more aware of the problem. You probably don’t realize how often you say negative things in your head, or how much it affects your experience.” Source: Develop the Positive Self Talk Habit! by Elizabeth Scott on About.com
  • Affirmations. Affirmations positive phrases which you repeat to yourself which describe how you want to be. Examples include: “I am confident socially and enjoy meeting new people” or “I always make healthy choices”. Source: FreeAffirmations.org
  • Visualization. This is a mental technique that uses the imagination to make dreams and goals come true. By visualizing a certain event, situation, or an object, you attract it into our life.

Exercises for Older Teens and Adults:

  • Know Your BeliefsThis is one of the Dreambook pages.
  • Keep track of your personal thoughts over the next week. How many are negative and how may are positive? Ask yourself if a positive belief can be substituted for a negative one. Example: I am stuff in traffic and feeling stressed. My negative belief is that I’m late or wasting my time. A substituted positive belief might be to think that this is a good time to enjoy some peace and quiet by listening to music.
  • Practice positive thinking. Replace negative self-talk with positive, some examples:
Negative self-talk: Positive self-talk:
I’ve never done it before. It’s an opportunity to learn something.
It’s too complicated. I’ll tackle it from a different angle.
I don’t have the resources. Necessity is the mother of invention.

Exercises for Younger Teens (13-16):

  • Make Attitude Acrostics, Attitude Inventory and Turn It Around are 3 activities on About.com

Questions to Encourage Critical Thinking:

  • When I stop to listen to the voice in my head, “what do I hear”?
  • What aspect of your life is most important right now? How can a positive attitude help you?

Tools and Templates:

  • Know Your Beliefs

 

Word Definition:

  • Self-talk. Mental talking: the things that an individual says to himself or herself mentally.
  • Affirmation. A positive statement or declaration of the truth or existence of something.

Web Articles:

Books:

Videos:

Quotes:

Faith-Based Quotes:

  • “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” – Romans 12:2 ESV

Other Quotes:

  • “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford
  • “Being miserable is a habit; being happy is a habit; and the choice is yours.” – Tom Hopkins
  • “The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change his future by merely changing his attitude.” – Oprah Winfrey

One-Point Lesson:

  • None at this time.

Related Skills:

Summary 2-page Lesson Examples, coming soon:

  • Positive Thinking (for teens).
  • Positive Thinking.