By Rhonda Ramsey,
P.O.V. Contributing Writer
Thought is the blossom; language the bud; action the fruit behind it.
--- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Sayings remain meaningless until they are embodied in habits.
--- Kahlil Gibran
There is so much about my fate that I cannot control, but other things do fall under the jurisdiction. I can decide how I spend my time, whom I interact with, whom I share my body and life and money and energy with. I can select what I can read and eat and study. I can choose how I'm going to regard unfortunate circumstances in my life-whether I will see them as curses or opportunities. I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all, I can choose my thoughts.
--- Elizabeth Gilbert
The power of the word is real whether or not you are conscious of it.
--- Sonia Choquette
Your own words are the bricks and mortar of the dreams you want to realize. Your words are the greatest power you have. The words you choose and their use establish the life you experience.
--- Sonia Choquette
Words are a form of action, capable of influencing change.
--- Ingrid Bengis
To be happy, drop the words “if only” and substitute instead the words “next time”.
--- Smiley Blanton
When I read these beautiful quotes, I am inspired. I am inspired to do more with my thoughts, my energy and the way I speak. After all studies show negativity and depression really are physically harmful as well as emotionally harmful.
According to usatoday.com, Carol Ryff, a psychology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has been studying whether or not high levels of psychological well-being benefit physical health:
“There is a science that is emerging that says a positive attitude isn't just a state of mind,” she says. “It also has linkages to what's going on in the brain and in the body.”
Ryff has shown that individuals with higher levels of well-being have lower cardiovascular risk, lower levels of stress hormones and lower levels of inflammation, which serves as a marker of the immune system.
Her research on positive mental states is among 44 current grants funded by the National Institutes of Health evaluating optimism. Most research in this area has focused on negative feelings, such as how stress, anxiety and depression affect physical health.
“Science in this area is at the very beginning,” Ryff said. “For a long period of time, you couldn't even get funding to do research like this because there was such a preoccupation with illness and dysfunction.”
Hard to measure happiness.
“It's clear that stressors produce abnormal changes in the immune system, said Ronald Glaser, director of Ohio State University's Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research. Glaser and his wife, Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, a clinical psychologist also at Ohio State, studied the mind-body connection and found that chronic stress and psychological stress can impede wounds from healing, may impair the effectiveness of vaccines and can weaken the immune system of caregivers.”
How many of us spend our days plagued with depressing memories, frustrating mistakes and an inability to see the glass half full? What have you done to change? If you changed, how long did it take you to correct your thinking, and channel your thoughts?
I will end with three more questions and some great tips for improving our thinking:
- Give yourself credit for your accomplishments. Don’t tell yourself that it was merely easy, and you only did well because (fill in the blank)
- It’s okay to recognize your faults; but don’t dwell on them. Do your best to work on them.
- Do not allow others to drag you down.
- Do something good for someone else, and expect nothing in return. You will feel as light as a feather, and you will want to experience that feeling again and again.
- Think of quotes, scriptures, or happy things that bring a smile to your face. Find a way to implement those words or memories into your everyday life. Even if you have to write it down, and tape it to your mirror or refrigerator.
- If you talk down to yourself constantly, what better way to correct this, than to speak to yourself using positive words? Meditate on positive things. Speak to your inner self or pray. It will make a world of difference.
Do you have any tips to share? Is it time for a change in your thinking? Are you currently working on your self-deprecating humor or inability to see the glass half full? Will you share your journey? Your daily struggles? Your recent improvements?