How To Be Positive Without Feeling Fake

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The “fake it ’til you make it” technique when it comes to positivity is total BS. Plastering on a smile when your lips want to naturally curve downward. Posting an overly uplifting quote on Facebook when you don’t fully believe it. Telling yourself that everything is great, when in reality, everything is falling apart.

All of these things are only temporary solutions to long-term issues. You’re not going to become a genuinely happy and upbeat person if you do these things. You’re going to feel like a fraud.

However, this doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to become positive. There are many things you can do to transform yourself and your thoughts without feeling fake. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. Create realistic goals. Have a list of both short-term and long-term goals that you know are achievable. Make sure your goals are things that will help you grow as a person. Personalize your goals as much as possible to assure that you’re not copying general goals that people have. Having things to work towards will help you build up your mental strength and it will change your whole perspective on life. Additionally, once you reach a goal, the feeling of euphoria is a feeling that no fake smile can obtain.
  2. Have full awareness of your problems. Many people believe that ignoring a problem will make it go away, or it will make it seem like the problem just isn’t there. Ignorance is not bliss at all. If you are constantly lying to yourself and claiming that nothing is wrong, you’re doing yourself more harm than good. Sit down and take a moment to identify anything on your mind that is bothering you. You can either write everything down on paper or just sit there and think. Sorting out everything that is wrong will help you to add to your list of goals and it will help you figure out productive solutions.
  3. Remove negative people from your life. If a friend is having a negative impact on you because of his/her attitude, you should reconsider having that person in your life. It’s pointless to have a person in your life who just provides drama and stress, rather than comfort and happiness. It can be difficult to cut a friend out of your life, but in this case, you need to put yourself first. You need to truly think about the negativity this person is bringing to your life and how much it’s affecting you. In the end, it’s not worth it to stay friends with someone for his/her sake. Only keep those in your life who lift you up.
  4. Engage in “feel good” activities. You have to figure out exactly what activities make you feel happy. Exercising can naturally make everyone feel happier because of those awesome endorphins. Engaging in your favorite hobby is important because doing what you love will give instant gratification. It’s also fun to explore new hobbies and activities in order to maintain personal growth. Search the Internet for a new, unique hobby that looks interesting to you. You can even find something new to do with a significant other or a friend. It can feel great to be doing things you want to do outside of things that you have to do. Live your life the way you want to and you’ll be a lot happier.
  5. Accept failure. It’s easy to feel down after something doesn’t go the way you wanted it to. While it’s perfectly OK to let yourself feel sad about it, don’t let that feeling last forever. You have to realize that no one is perfect, and that things will not always work out. Sometimes you’re going to fail at a goal, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Obviously we all crave success over failure; however, if we never accept failure, we will never accept ourselves. The good thing about failure is that it will force you to work harder. It will make you want to change the way you do things because you don’t want to see failure again. Once you are able to accept failure, you’ll be able to have more faith in yourself to keep persevering.
  6. Allow yourself to feel every emotion freely. If you’re only forcing yourself to feel happy, all of your other emotions are going to be trapped inside you. If you never let those other emotions out, you’re going to feel even worse. It’s OK to feel negative emotions. If human beings were only capable of feeling happiness, we’d be really boring and stagnant creatures. Just imagine you’re watching a movie and the characters were always smiling and nothing ever seemed wrong. Do you know how lame that would be? Allow yourself to fully embrace every emotion that you feel, even if you aren’t used to it. If you are able to adapt to expressing all of your emotions, it’ll help you become a stronger person in the end.
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15 Ways To Improve Your Mood

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We all have bad days and good days, but it’s important to always work on improving your mood because you deserve to be happy!  There are many small and easy things you can do in order to feel better, but here are some ideas:

1. Write about your feelings.

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Whether you’re a writer or not, it always helps to let everything out that you’ve been building up inside. If you put all your thoughts down on paper, not only will you feel relieved, but it will also be easier for you to solve your problems.

2. Exercise.

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Even though lying on the couch sounds better than exercise, releasing those endorphins can be very fulfilling! Even just going for an easy walk can make you feel really great; it doesn’t have to be anything extensive!

3. Listen to your favorite music.

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Even though you might be tempted to listen to sad music when you’re in a negative mood, doing so will only keep you in that mood. If you listen to your favorite upbeat music and sing along, you’ll start feeling better before you know it!

4. Get organized.

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If you’re in a bad mood because you have a lot on your plate, take a moment to breathe and make a list or schedule of everything you have to do. If you organize everything by when you’re going to get things done, it will be easier for you to accomplish everything.

5. Do some cleaning.

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No one really likes cleaning, but if you’re in a clean environment, you’ll automatically be able to feel a lot better about life. Even if it’s just picking up some things off your floor, you’ll feel great about the improvement you have just made.

6. Get some fresh air.

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Being cooped up inside when you’re in a bad mood makes it hard to improve. Go sit outside, or even just crack open your window. Breathing in the outside air will make your brain feel less “blah” and more at ease.

7. Hang out with friends.

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If you go out and do something fun, or even just sit and chat with friends, chances are you’ll start feeling a lot better right away. Whether it’s talking to your friends about why you’re in a bad mood, or just distracting yourself, it’s a lot better than sitting by yourself.

8. Watch some funny videos.

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YouTube can be your best friend if none of your friends are available to make you laugh. Watch some of your old favorite funny videos, or look up new, random ones. Laughing is good for the soul!

9. Watch your favorite movie.

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If you have some more time, watch a movie that you have always loved and always makes you smile or laugh. Or even watch your favorite TV show! Entertainment is beautiful thing.

10. Dance in your room.

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This is where that saying “dance like no one is watching” comes in. Blast a catchy tune and dance your heart out because why not? You’ll not only have a chance to laugh at yourself, but you’ll also have so much fun.

11. Think about something exciting.

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Find at least one thing that you are looking forward to and focus on that. It’ll make your day a lot better knowing that better things are coming to you very soon.

12. Play with puppies.

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If you don’t have your own dog, go to a pet store or shelter and go play with or pet some dogs! Dogs instantly put people in a good mood because they are just so cute and friendly! If you’re not a dog person, choose another animal to go play with!

13. Volunteer.

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If you have some extra time, go find a volunteer opportunity. Making other people happy will give you a lot of great feelings. Essentially, helping others become happy will make you happy as well.

14. Finish a project you’ve been putting off.

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It always feels great to finish something, so if you’ve been procrastinating on a hobby or project, go finish it! Even if you’re busy, try to make some time to get it done.

15. Just smile. 

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This one may sound silly, but smiling alone can change your mood, even in the slightest way. Try to smile throughout the day, and smile at others as well, because you never know who else is also having a bad day!

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10 Things You Learn In College Outside The Classroom

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College is first seen as a time of studying hard and working towards a career. While this is accurate, the overall college experience gives people the opportunity to learn more than just what they read in textbooks. College students learn all these extra little things without even realizing it. Here are some of the things that they learn:

1. How to find true friends. This lesson usually doesn’t come right off the bat because when you’re starting out as a freshman, everyone is new and everyone wants to hang out. But over the years, you come to find who is truly your friend and who is not. College allows you to differentiate between a true friend and a fake friend, which is something that develops with time.

2. How to have a stable relationship. College relationships are way more serious than they are in high school. If you go through some crappy relationships during college, you are able to learn what you can do differently in future relationships in order to make them more stable. If you have secured yourself in a serious relationship in college, you learn how to maintain it, and throughout the relationship, you learn how to make it better. College is a time for maturing, and understanding how to resolve conflict with others.

3. How to have fun. Even though you have to be serious when it comes to classwork, college is a time for going out and doing fun things. You learn that it’s perfectly okay to give yourself a break once in awhile, because having fun is a crucial part of life.

4. How to take care of yourself. This refers to many different aspects of taking care of yourself, from learning how to essentially live on your own, to eating well and exercising. Usually freshman year, you don’t care much about eating healthy and getting enough sleep, but over the years you realize how important these things are.

5. How to be responsible. Responsibility is a huge part of college because not only are you responsible for getting your homework done in time, but you also have outside responsibilities that come along with your independence. As more responsibilities get thrown on you throughout the years, you learn how to be a more organized individual.

6. How to work with others. You’ve been taught at a young age how to work with others, but it really sinks in during college. This is mainly because you get stuck doing group projects and working with people who you might not get along with. Being put in situations like these allow you to become more mature, and learn how to work with people who are different from you.

7. How to try new things. College is a time where new opportunities fly at you from every angle. Being in a new place on your own allows you to branch out a bit more than you’re used to. This is a good thing because it opens you up to new interests and new things that you might have never even tried before.

8. How to ask for help. During your college years, you come to realize that it’s perfectly okay to ask for help when you’re lost or confused. This can range from getting help on schoolwork to getting help with personal problems. This is something you learn because you’re maturing and realizing that getting help isn’t a bad thing, it’s only another thing that contributes to your growth.

9. How to be involved. Colleges have so many different organizations that you’re bound to have found at least one that you belong to. This involvement gives you some experiences that you might not have had without college. It also helps you meet new people who are interested in similar things to you, and sometimes these people can become your life-long friends.

10. How to find yourself. Essentially, college is the time in your life where you find out what you want to do in your future. With that, comes finding yourself. During college, you’ll sometimes lose yourself during your journey, and you might not have even completely found yourself by the time you graduate. But this doesn’t mean that you will never find yourself. You can take everything you’ve learned in college and apply it to your life, while continuing on your journey after graduation.

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Why You Shouldn’t Make New Year’s Resolutions

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So every year, you make a pact to yourself to do everything on your list of resolutions, and then at the end of the year you realize that you have barely accomplished anything on that list. So why do you keep continuing that cycle? New Year’s resolutions are so overrated. You don’t need to make a list of things like “lose weight” or “use my phone less” because you know that you’re more than likely not going to get things done that way. Instead, you should cherish every single thing you DO get done during the year of 2015.

It was on a BuzzFeed article that I saw this great idea of decorating a mason jar, and filling it with notes of every great thing that happens during 2015. I decorated a mason jar myself, and I can’t wait for 2015 to begin so I can start filling it up. The idea is to write down all the wonderful things you do or feel during the year and put them in the jar, and then by the end of the year you can look at everything you’ve done, and ultimately feel accomplished.

I think that this is a great idea because it will make you realize how much you have actually done instead of things that you haven’t done. I believe that this is a great way to stay positive and feel good about yourself. Just imagine how much all the little things can add up over the year. It doesn’t even matter if you write down something small like, “got an ‘A’ on a paper” or something big like, “went on a trip to Australia”. Big or small, anything that feels like an accomplishment to you personally, is amazing.

You need to let yourself see that you are amazing, and everything you do is amazing. Sure, you’re going to make mistakes, and you’re going to have your ups and downs, because after all, you’re human. But, despite these rough times, you’re also going to have exciting things happen to you. Like I said, it doesn’t even matter how small these positive things are, just write it down each time something awesome happens. You’ll feel stronger and happier if you do so.

Let 2015 be your year. Let it be the year of breaking out of old habits of any negativity, or any sense of doubt. 2015 will be better than 2014 simply because you will let it be better. So instead of making those resolutions, take 2015 day by day, and make sure you let things happen as they are meant to happen. I promise you that it will be a lot more satisfying that way.

Here’s to a Happy New Year!

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20 Things We Can Learn From Dogs

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1. It’s okay to be lazy sometimes.

2. Being friendly makes you likeable.

3. Going out for a walk can make you feel great!

4. It’s important to be crazy sometimes!

5. Cuddling is a wonderful thing.

6. You need to make sure you smile a lot!

7. Be proud of your special talents.

8. Always cherish your family.

9. Treat yourself every once in awhile!

10. You’re never too old to have stuffed animals.

11. Befriend everyone, no matter how different they are from you. 

12. Live fearlessly!

13. Drink a lot of water.

14. Always check out new things!

15. Cheer someone up when they’re feeling down.

16. It’s always better to stand out than fit in!

17. Help anyone in need.

18. Never give up on your goals.

19. Take time to enjoy nature. 

20. Love unconditionally. 

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30 Ways To Change Your Life in 2015

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This is the last month of 2014, which means a new year is coming soon. While some people create lists of resolutions that they never even end up looking at ever again, I decided to reflect upon the different ways that anyone can change their life for the better in 2015. While this isn’t necessarily a list of specific resolutions, this is instead a list of actions that you can take and apply to your own life. So make it a goal to achieve some of these things (or maybe all of them!) in the upcoming year, and see how much your life shifts towards positivity.

1. Leave the past behind you. If you’re constantly living in the past, how are you ever going to reach the future? It’s okay to reference the past once in awhile, but never ever let it hold you back. Keep looking forward.

2. Turn all negative thoughts into positive ones. “I can’t do this” is never an option. Once you start thinking positively, you will soon start to feel like a more positive person. In turn, you will find yourself accomplishing more than you could have ever imagined.

3. Think outside the box. Stop being stuck in your old ways of thinking. Think about things from a different perspective and your life will become a lot more interesting.

4. Do something that scares you. If you never face your fears, how will you ever grow? Start off with something small, like maybe talking to that boy or girl that you like. Eventually you can face a bigger fear, like going bungee jumping, or something totally insane and out there.

5. Don’t put up with people who don’t treat you well. If you’re in a relationship with someone who isn’t treating you with the respect you deserve, either leave them, or talk to them about it. If they aren’t going to change their ways, you need to get yourself out of this situation because you’re better than that.

6. Treat others with kindness. We all know the saying, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. We all need to live by this saying because the world would be such a better place. Be nice to everyone, even to those people who might not be your best friends. It’s better to greet an enemy with a friendly, “Hello”, than to throw a bunch of hateful comments at them.

7. Do good deeds. Volunteer your time to someone in need. Whether it be a charity, or a family member, it’s important to help those who are less fortunate, or who are struggling with something. Not only will you feel good doing it, but you’ll make the other person feel amazing as well.

8. Believe in yourself. Stop telling yourself that you’ll never amount to anything. Stop telling yourself that you’re not good enough. You are the first person who needs to believe in you, so you better get on it. You will have a bright future if you do so.

9. Stand up for what you believe in. Stop letting others lead you in directions in which you don’t want to go. You don’t have to agree with everyone just to be on their good side. Don’t be afraid to go on your own path with your own thoughts. You have your own mind, use it the way you want to use it!

10. Actually work towards your goals. Don’t make a list of goals and cringe each time you look at them. You can achieve any goal as long as you keep working hard. Don’t try to take the easy route. Work harder than you ever have in your entire life and you’ll be surprised by how far you will go.

11. Dream big. The difference between incredibly big dreams and realistic dreams is that if you go with the latter, you’ll be playing it safe. No dream is outside of your reach as long as you believe in it.

12. Be grateful for the people who have stayed in your life. When all is lost in life, take time to think about everyone who has stuck by you through everything. Those people are your true friends/family, and they care about you a whole lot. Be grateful for them, because you’re incredibly lucky to have them.

13. Never doubt your abilities. Stop comparing yourself to others, and realize that you are actually amazing at what you do. You’re the only you that exists in this world, so with that in mind, do what you do best. You are talented in your own way.

14. Stop procrastinating. Whether it be work for school or your job, or starting a fitness goal, you need to stop saying “oh, I’ll do it later”. DO IT NOW. If you wait until later, you’re just wasting more time. You’ll feel a lot more proud of yourself if you start everything right now, instead of holding off.

15. Fix broken friendships. Are you and your best friend falling apart? Instead of letting it happen, try to communicate with each other about what has gone wrong. If you are meant to be in each other’s lives forever, you will find a way to work things out. Don’t let yourself lose the people who are most important to you.

16. Fall in love with the world. With all the terrible things that occur in this world, some may find it nearly impossible to have positive thoughts about the world. But if you find at least one thing you love about this world, or even just your country, it will make living life that much better.

17. Let things happen on their own. Stop trying to control every little thing. You cannot always make things happen or prevent things from happening, sometimes they just have to happen on their own. Almost everything happens for a reason, which is why you need to just let things be.

18. Appreciate your family more. Even if you’re not very close with your family, you should be incredibly grateful that they are in your life. You’re connected to them in a way that is different from everyone else, which is a special bond that no one can take away. They will always be there for you no matter what.

19. Don’t stress out too much. If you spend all your time stressing out about every tiny thing, then you’re missing out on life big time. Relax. You are capable of anything and everything. If you take some deep breaths, and try to calm down, you will actually have better success. So try not to freak out.

20. Acknowledge your strengths. How often do you sit down and think about everything you’re good at? Probably not very often. This is important to do because it will ultimately give you a lot more motivation. Everyone is good at something, so it’s important to take the time to realize your abilities.

21. Also acknowledge your weaknesses. It’s also important to think about things that you need to work on. It’s okay to have weaknesses; that’s what makes us human. But it’s always possible to work on turning those weaknesses into strengths. You can always become a better version of yourself.

22. Smile more. A lot more. Smile the moment you wake up in the morning because you have so much to smile about. Even if you’re going through a rough time, you can find a positive in the sea of negatives. Smiling is important because this simple gesture makes you feel better mentally, emotionally, and physically, and it’s very contagious in public. 🙂

23. Go on adventures. Stop sitting in your living room watching movies with your friends or going to the same mall every weekend. Go on a road trip, go to a different town, or even just go  to a different mall. If you change things up, life will be a lot more exciting and fulfilling.

24. Sing in the shower. This may seem like a goofy one, but trust me, it’s crucial to sing in the shower. It’s been proven that singing in the shower releases stress! Plus, everyone is a superstar in the shower, so go ahead and give yourself your own personal concert. You sound amazing!

25. Get more sleep. Going to bed at a reasonable hour might not sound fun, but it’s important in order to be healthy. If you get a good amount of sleep every night, you’ll feel a whole lot better, and you might not even need to chug all that coffee in the morning.

26. Eat healthier and exercise. I know that most times, chocolate sounds a lot better than carrots, but you have to take care of yourself. It’s okay, to indulge every once in awhile (hey, you can’t deprive yourself!), but remember that every healthy choice you make leads you to feeling better overall. You also don’t need to have a gym membership in order to exercise, so don’t make that an excuse. Exercise in your room, or the park, or wherever you feel comfortable, and again, you’ll feel a whole lot better.

27. Stop being lazy. This one sort of goes along with exercise. Long story short, stop being a couch potato. While it’s important to let yourself rest sometimes, try not to make it a habit. Go out and do something instead of laying in bed and watching TV all day.

28. Don’t give your time to someone who doesn’t deserve it. Stop wasting your time trying to make someone see the good in you. If they don’t already see it, then they’re either blind, or lying to themselves. Only associate yourself with the people who want to be in your life because you are you. Authentic people are the best kind of people.

29. Meet new people. Meet at least one new person every week (or everyday if you’re feeling ambitious!). This new person doesn’t have to become your best friend, or even a friend at all, but it’s always a good idea to communicate with others, especially people whom you may have never thought about talking to. By being a friendly person, you’ll make yourself and others feel better about the world.

30. Do what you love to do. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise. Even if your talent is something that typically doesn’t give you great money, still do it. It’s better to be poor and doing something you love, than to be rich by doing something you hate. (Yes, I know, we need money to survive, but hey, you can have a side job that makes the money, while you continue to do what you love). You’ll be a happier person if you happily do every single thing that you want to do.

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How To Stay Positive

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From my own personal experience, here are some ways that can help you stay positive when you feel like all hope is lost:

1. Write down what you’re feeling and ways you can change those feelings. Sometimes even just getting all your thoughts out on paper is enough to feel better, especially if you’re having a rough day. For long term “problems”, find long term solutions. If you’re stuck in a rut, write down all the things that will make you feel better!

2. Exercise. “Uhh what?” <– that’s what you’re thinking, isn’t it? Before you get all skeptical, just wait a minute. Exercise helps with so many things, including stress and unhappiness. Exercising just makes you feel so great! It gives you more energy, which will allow you to do everything you want to do with a good attitude.

3. Do things that you enjoy. This one is self explanatory, but seriously, just do what you love to do. If it requires you to find extra time in your day to do it, just DO IT! 

4. Kick people out of your life who are bringing you down. (again, self explanatory)

5. Do good things for other people.

6. Don’t hold grudges against anyone.

7. Don’t give up on anything no matter how hard it is.

8. Be self-motivated. If you want to accomplish something, don’t let anyone stand in your way. If you give yourself motivation, you can definitely do it!

9. Wake up in the morning with a smile on your face. It sounds dumb, but honestly, if you start the day at least going through the motions of being happy and positive, then soon you will be happy and positive 🙂

10. THINK POSITIVELY no matter how hard it might be. And don’t be like “well that’s easier said than done” NO, SHUT UP. It’s only hard if you make it hard. When you find yourself thinking about something negatively, such as “I’m going to fail this test”, stop yourself and say this instead: “If I just keep working hard, I can do this!”. Thinking positively is probably one of the most important steps in being a positive person. 

 

***Remember to smile a lot*** 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂