I don't take selfies often, but stick me in some traffic with decent lighting... don't mind if I do.
The problem with me and selfies is that either it takes 100 shots to get the perfect "one" or I'm just way too analytical... or perhaps both. I'm sure that I've taken tons of selfies that were just fine, but one hair out of place might have caused me to delete them. The one negative aspect prevents me from seeing the "big picture." Don't be like me, folks. Just post the selfie. It's not that serious.
For me, my internal struggle with selfies is just an examples of a struggle that many of us have with positive vs. negative thinking.
If I'm to be completely honest, I'm not a full-time optimist. Sometimes it takes a little more effort for me to see the good in everyone, everything, and every situation. I wouldn’t say that I’m a pessimist either, but I’m definitely a realist; and in reality, bad things happen. We get embarrassed, things stop working, short cuts turn into obstacle courses, and the list goes on. Being the planner that I am, I try to prepare myself for the worst. As I get older, I’m realizing, though, how stressful it can be to live every day thinking about all of the negative things that might happen instead of spending more time enjoying the positive.
When I came to terms with my innate “Debbie Downer” tendencies, I started to do some research on the positive vs. negative thinking and came across information that provided insightful relief in that it legitimized my negative thinking without encouraging it.
Negative thoughts actually serve a purpose. They remind us to be aware and cautious of situations we should avoid and promote healthy competition for successful outcomes. However, it’s much healthier to have a balance of positive and negative in our minds to avoid unnecessary stress.
If you’re not naturally a super optimistic positive thinker, try some simple techniques to be more mindful of your thoughts and think more positively:
(1) Live each moment.
Sometimes we can get so caught up in thinking about the possibilities of the negative things that can happen next instead of focusing on the positive things that are happening right now. Just enjoy the moment. Most likely, the negative things that could happen won't happen if you don't dwell on them.
(2) Verbally express gratitude.
Life can go by so quickly that it causes us to take things for granted, even though not intentionally. It can cause us to get into the habit of disregarding the things we're most thankful for. Tell the people you care about, work with, or inspire you regularly how much you appreciate them, and always remember to give thanks in prayer.
(3) Look at the big picture.
I guarantee you that there is more to think positively about than negatively; that's just the beautiful thing about life. Don't miss the forest for the trees. Try looking at it from a different angle or take a few steps back to get a wider shot. I guarantee, you'll either like what you see or figure out what you can do to improve the picture.
Happy selfie-taking, people!