Sunday, August 21, 2016

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Being positive in trying times

It's often easier to remain positive when the going is good but quite challenging when it gets rough. This is mostly because we are attracted to pleasure and feeling good is a pleasurable experience. However, it is when the going gets rough that we actually need to
be positive, because that is when being positive is needed most. Here, we shall discuss five ways to remain positive in trying times.

Plan: The word ‘plan’ is probably the most used word in the adult vocabulary. We often talk about planning towards a financially independent future but we really do not know what planning entails. In planning, there must be a realistic goal to be achieved through some set of actions. For example, a man plans to buy a car at the end of ten months. To get the money, he embarks, taking certain steps or actions like getting a job and saving a huge chunk of his salary. Imagine if this same man does not put money away into his savings but spends most of it on drinks and women, the ten months would inevitably elapse without his plan being realised. It is therefore worth noting that in planning, two key ingredients are patience and sacrifice. After all, in order get anything you want in life, there must be sometime or something you have to give up. Isn’t it?

Be contented: Contentment does not mean that you should not aspire for more but you should do so within your means and being satisfied with what you have. For example, there should be no need taking loans to go on a vacation abroad if one cannot afford it. This would create another problem as loans have to be repaid – with interest. In trying times, one must be satisfied with the standard of living while patiently planning towards a better life. Without contentment, planning would be futile. Also, without patience, even      contentment would be futile because one has to be patient with his/her current situation while planning towards better days.

Exercise: Physical exercise scares a lot of people because it is often seen as hard work. There are those who are slim and do not feel any need for physical exercise just because the mindset has been formed around the fallacy that exercise is for the overweight. It isn’t! The body needs exercise just like the lungs need oxygen. There are several studies which prove that exercising makes the body feel refreshed and inevitably makes one look younger. Exercising in the morning before going about any domestic duty makes the body relaxed and energises you throughout the day. What can be better than being refreshed throughout the day?

Accept criticismCriticisms are often hard to accept because we often live under the false illusion that we are superhuman and hence infallible but contrary to this, we do make mistakes. In most circumstances, it is a sincere and loving spouse, relative or friend that point out where you err and proffer solutions going forward. This is different from one who constantly looks for fault. The one who does this does not suggest a better way to do something but just stops at pointing out the bad. However, hold on to what they tell you and act on it. It is true that you cannot please everyone and frankly, you do not have to please anyone. You can be a better person by taking time to reflect on your actions. Some mistakes would not be repeated over and over only if we took time to think. 

Enjoy nature: There are people that cannot remember the last time they gazed at the night sky. They cannot even remember the last time they saw the moon and this is because we often pride ourselves with being busy with hardly enough time to do anything outside work. Taking a walk at night while taking deep breaths of the night air, staring at the night sky and even sitting by a stream are ways to reconnect with nature and nature offers nothing but peace and tranquility. It is true that we are facing trying times but nothing surpasses peace of mind and body. Sometimes listening to the birds sing would warm your heart. Looking at dogs play without a worry in the world would bring a smile to your face. Nature offers no harm. Embrace it!

There are other ways in which one could stay positive in trying times but these are just the basics which if practised would reveal a monumental shift in your life from that of stress, anxiety and gloom to that of joy, happiness and optimism. You alone hold the keys to your happiness. Use it wisely!

Written by Anthony Onugba
Anthony Onugba is a certified Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) professional and a Master trainer on Inter-Personal Communication (IPC), Behavior Change Communication (BCC), a leadership trainer, an author and a nature enthusiast. Find out more on his website at

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