26 September 2014


Having finished the fourth week of my internship, I'm feeling quite positive.

But during these four weeks, to say I've had my ups and downs would be an understatement.

There's been doubt, happiness, excitement, despair, panic, exhaustion and relief. And sometimes I've done my best to suppress everything and just go to sleep and hope tomorrow will be a better day.

For someone that has a long history of anxiety and depression, change is a huge issue for me, and also a big trigger. As is a lack of routine and stability.

With this in mind, I've had to revisit taught cognitive practices that help me to stay in a more positive state of mind. So whether, like me, you're going through a tricky time or have a mare trying to look on the bright side, or you're simply curious - here are my top 5 ways to encourage positivity and/or manage negative thinking.

1. Rationalise. If you start to panic, breathe, take a step back, recognise this and start to question yourself. Why am I feeling like this? Ask yourself "why?" until you get to the crux of the problem, and then work from there. You'll soon realise your negative thinking has little rationale and it will help you move on to something better.

2. Distract yourself. This could be as simple as scrolling through your newsfeed, reading a book or tidying your room. It might be getting out of the house and going for a walk. You've got to remove yourself from your bad thoughts somehow, whether this is mentally, physically, or both.

3. "Me" time. Nothing perks you up like taking some time for a little pamper. Do something that makes you happy. Paint your nails, watch your favourite TV programme, order a pizza - take an hour of your day, morning of evening, for you. No one else. It might sound selfish, but you won't be much of a joy around everyone else if you don't get your mind in a better place anyway. It's important to take care of yourself. 

4. Talk to somebody. Sometimes it's easy to get so stuck inside yourself that you forget there are other things going on in the world other than your life. When was the last time you caught up with friends, told your parents you loved them, made a cup of tea for your housemates? It also helps to talk things through with someone that cares about you and knows you and can offer a little perspective.

5. Keep going. This sounds silly, but you've got to keep going. Get up. Shower. Get your 5 a day. Drink water. Go to work. Go to the gym. Go to the shops. All of that. Even if you don't want to. Do what you've gotta do to motivate yourself and work through the negativity. Because things will get better, even if it's only bit by bit.

And through all this, smile. Even if you don't feel like it. Sometimes I find if you act chirpy, you end up feeling chirpier.

Have a lovely weekend! Until next time.

Images: WeHeartIt

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