LSW London Mindfulness Expert Shares Her Top 5 Steps To A More Positive Life
What does it mean to live positively? How do we practice mindfulness? And how can we implement it in simple and sustainable ways to live happier and more contented, positive lives?
Co-Founder of LSW London, and mindfulness expert, Lili Sinclair-Williams shares her top five tips in her insightful guest blog.
Living positively is to embrace the positives over the negatives, to see the good in people and situations, to allow yourself to lean into what feels good and to remove what doesn’t.
To live a more positive lifestyle does not mean never coming up against adversity. In fact, we need moments of hardship in order to truly appreciate the moments of joy that come to us.
So, how do we embrace this positive lifestyle and rid ourselves of any guilt attached to doing more of what makes us happy? Here are my 5 steps to living a more positive lifestyle, starting today.
Surround yourself with people who lift you up
The people you surround yourself with will have a huge impact on your emotional state, so be sure to surround yourself with positive, encouraging and loving friends and family. Most humans are naturally empathetic (some more so than others!) which means we take on the emotions of those around us.
Surrounding yourself with positive, uplifting souls will do wonders to your own state of positivity. See if you can identify the people who lift your spirits and make you feel good, and try to schedule more time with them.
Practicing gratitude is the act of appreciating what you have - to be thankful for the things you have in your life, thankful for the people who surround you, thankful for the moments that bring you joy. Practising gratitude has an enormous number of benefits including creating stronger relationships, experiencing more positive emotions, reducing stress, improved sleep quality and so many more.
We don’t need to only be grateful for the larger things in life. In fact, it is creating the ability to be thankful for the little things, the tiny moments that make us smile, that are what make all the difference.
Start to pay attention to the little bursts of positivity you experience throughout the day – a smile from a stranger, the feeling of sunshine on your skin, the tasty cup of coffee you had first thing.
Each day, write down in a notebook, three things from that day that you were grateful for. The more you do this, the more you will notice more moments of gratitude throughout your life.
These days, we live our lives with everything readily available at our fingertips. The modern world is one of excess. If there’s something we need, with the click of a button we can have it delivered within the hour. Savouring is the act of appreciating the pleasure attached to the first moment of experiencing something. For example, the first bite of chocolate as a treat after a long day of work or the feeling of the warm grass or sand beneath your bare feet on a summer’s day.
This is all about experiencing positive feelings in the present moment, really noticing how it makes you feel and focusing in to intensify the positive feeling and appreciation of that moment.
“It is like swishing the experience around … in your mind,” says Fred Bryant, a social psychologist at Loyola University Chicago, ‘father’ of savouring and author of the 2006 book, Savoring: A New Model of Positive Experience.
Get a good night’s sleep
Exhaustion is something I’m sure we are all familiar with. We live hectic lives and rest can often become deprioritised, but sleep is essential if we want to remain productive and positive.
Try to create a bedtime routine that works for you. Switch off any electronics at least 30 minutes before you get into bed and find some activities that help you unwind. These could include a candlelit bath, a cup of chamomile tea, reading 10 pages of a book, some gentle breathing exercises or listening to a guided meditation – check out our Sleep Well Collection, which has five guided sleep meditations to help you drift off into a deep sleep.
Learn more on how to improve your sleep with Birch & Wilde here:
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Random Acts of Kindness
Kindness stimulates the production of serotonin, which benefits your health, keeps you calm, reduces stress and anxiety, and makes you happy. Research has also shown people to feel stronger and more energetic after helping others. If this all wasn't enough, kindness can help people live longer.
Altruism produces oxytocin, known as the 'cardio protective' hormone, which reduces blood pressure. It can also help to build up strong networks of friends and family, which has been found to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Introducing Random Acts of Kindness – selfless acts shown towards others – into your routine can help you see life in a more positive light. Try it out today, it doesn’t need to cost anything. It could be something as little as a supportive smile, a compliment to a friend, reaching out to someone who is having a hard time and offering an ear.
Research also suggests that people who experience kindness are more likely to offer kindness themselves, so you could start a cycle of kindness in motion, wouldn’t that be lovely!
You can learn more about LSW London and view their mindfulness and gratitude collection from Birch & Wilde here. We hope you love it (as much as we do)!