What happens inside us creates our outer world.
In other words, the pattern of our thoughts, attitudes, feelings, and actions is what creates our reality. Our external circumstances don’t just happen. We create them.
If we want to create a happy, healthy, and abundant life, our challenge is navigating a flood of potentially negative influences every day. You certainly can resist them if you actively think about it but doing so takes a large amount of willpower.
However, instead of trying to resist negative influences, it is much easier to make an active choice about not exposing yourself to them. There are countless ways to do this, but here are a few that work for me:
1. Find something good in everything.
W. Clement Stone, a very successful, self-made businessman, formed an unusual habit in the early days of his career. He would say, “That’s good,” whenever anything happened, good or bad.
There’s tremendous power in seeing the good in everything. Sometimes it can be tough to see the good in things. But if you practice pausing before you respond, you will be able to find something good in any situation, even if it seems really small.
Victor Frankl said it best in his excellent book Man’s Search for Meaning. He said in every situation, between the situation and the way we respond to it, there’s a space. Start training your mind to use that space to think of something good automatically.
2. Eat a healthy diet.
What you eat doesn’t just affect your health; it affects your state of mind and performance.
Eating poorly can cause a lack of motivation, difficulty concentrating, decreased ability to handle stress and even lower self-confidence. However, your mental clarity, performance, creativity, curiosity, and emotional well-being improve when you eat well.
Some of the best foods to eat include berries, non-starchy vegetables, nuts and seeds, and fresh green juices. Drinking lots of water throughout the day improves brain function and decreases anxiety.
Don’t underestimate the power of food to help you feel better, think better, and be better on the inside and thereby helping you create or attract more of what you want on the outside.
3. Exercise regularly.
Exercise at least three times a week consistently to increase your endorphins and give your body a healthy way to release stress. Try to find a workout regime/routine you enjoy so you’ll be more likely to commit to it.
Working out helps you feel positive about yourself, others, and life.
4. Go with the flow and choose growth.
Life is constantly changing. That’s the nature of life. And sometimes, things happen that are outside of your control. But no matter what’s going on, you can think. And that’s huge.
No matter how much things change, don’t let your productivity and ingenuity come to a halt. Choose to keep growing.
Instead of giving up on your goals and dreams, double down. Make sure you stay on track or get ahead on your goals. Or, if necessary, create new goals that consider the changes that may lie ahead.
5. Invoke the vibration of hope.
I’m not talking about hope as a passive, wishful way of thinking. Let’s think of hope as a powerful emotion you can tap into, a renewable resource you can use to help redirect your life.
To use hope in this way, you must be aware of a powerful and positive force that is greater than you are. I call it God; some people call it the universe… it doesn’t matter what you call it.
What matters is that you have that internal knowing. You must understand that this powerful and positive force bigger than yourself is also inside you.
No matter what you’re going through—a breakup, losing a job, a health issue—allow that kind of connection, the understanding that you are pure potentiality, to be your guide.
Maya Angelou once wrote, “Hope and fear cannot occupy the same space. Invite one to stay.”
Today and every day, invite the vibration of hope to stay.
6. Expect doors to open.
I read something by Alexander Graham Bell, the great inventor of the telephone, that shares an idea we should always keep in mind. He said, “When one door closes, another opens.”
And then he went on to say, “. . . but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.”
Every time a door closes, make a habit of thinking—”Wow! That means a door has just been opened for me!” Looking at closed doors from this perspective will help you actively look for something positive and bring you unexpected opportunities.
7. Establish boundaries with negative people.
Though you may attempt to completely cut out negative people from your life, you may be forced to work with a negative person on a project or have a negative person in your family.
When that happens, create boundaries, so you feel in control around the negative person. Limit your time talking to negative people, try to keep the conversation light, or communicate your boundaries, calmly and consistently.
Try to maintain these boundaries, but if they are not respected, evaluate your options and take action. Even if the negative individual attempts to infringe on them.
8. Strive for excellence.
It’s hard to get caught up in negative influences if you strive for excellence in everything you do. That means maintaining the highest of standards and doing more than is expected. It’s always looking for ways to be and do better and give your best.
People who prosper aren’t satisfied with doing things the way they’ve always done them. They are always looking for ways to do them a little better. They continually push their knowledge, skills, and performance a little higher up the ladder.
9. Actively design your environment.
Your environment plays a significant role in your mindset. If you want to be successful, happy, and prosperous, you will have to cut yourself off from influences that will stop you from achieving these goals.
Your environment includes your physical surroundings, the people around you, and your community.
To feel positive, at ease, and creative, ensure your home and office are clean, aesthetically pleasing, and orderly.
Also, surround yourself with individuals and a community that:
✓ Believes in the life and future you are trying to create
✓ Is supportive of where you are trying to get
✓ Has the skills and knowledge that you are trying to learn
✓ Spends time doing activities that you are interested in
✓ Is successful in the areas of life that are important to you
And most importantly, you want to be around people and be part of a community that supports and encourages you to continue to learn and grow.
Negative influences can be devastating to living the life you really want. For that reason, be aware of what’s happening inside and around you.
Freeing your mind from negative influences requires making active decisions about which foods, people, and environments to expose yourself to and which ones to avoid.
It also requires a high degree of self-awareness regarding what you are trying to achieve, what is important to you, and what is holding you back from achieving your desires.
Ask these types of questions of yourself regularly
- What negative influences am I being exposed to regularly?
- Which environments have been holding me back from achieving my goals?
- What people, communities, and environments can I expose myself to that will help me internalize the ideas, beliefs, and habits I need to achieve my goals?
To more and better,