7 Ways To Be More Optimistic

Spring

We set the clocks ahead for daylight savings and many of us woke up to a darker sky, feeling sluggish thanks to a one-hour loss of sleep. If you hit the snooze, pulled the covers up over your head still feeling bummed out about your waistline, bank account, career or love life, you’re not alone. Despite more daylight our worries are still there. So how do we spring into Spring, a season that’s all about new beginnings and rebirth? For practical ways to cultivate optimism in our lives let’s listen to Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a NYC-based licensed clinical psychologist, teaching faculty member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College and the founder and Clinical Director of Comprehensive Consultation Psychological Services who shares these tips and tools.

 

1. Focus on the good.

“A daily exercise I often have my patients do is keep an appreciation or gratitude journal. When you focus on all the things to be happy for in your life then more great things come. Think generally and use your senses. What do you appreciate seeing, smelling, touching, tasting, listening to? Write it down. Within a few weeks you’ll train the mind to pivot to an appreciate thought when a negative thought comes,” explains Dr. Hafeez.

 

2. Make plans.

Making plans to see relatives, to see a new exhibit a movie or to travel gets our mind moving forward towards something positive that we can be hopeful and optimistic about. Dr. Hafeez suggests making plans to do 3 things per month for the next 3 months. “Choose things that you know will bring you joy and then go do them! Feeling excited about what is coming and talking about how fun it will be keeps us optimistic and forward-moving,” says Dr. Hafeez.

 

3. Control what you can, delegate the rest! 

We get pessimistic and worry about the worst possible outcomes when we realize that we cannot control every detail. This leads to anxiety and an even stronger feeling of having to control conditions, and even others. According to Dr. Hafeez, this is a trap. “Figure out what needs to get done. What actions you can take. Then let go of anything else that is beyond your control with faith that everything will turn out fine. Envision the desired outcome,” advises Dr. Hafeez.

 

4. Limit your news watching and avoid it before bed. 

“There is a very common pattern I see people falling into,” says Hafeez. “People awaken and immediately reach for their smartphone for news headlines. They then turn on the TV news as background noise. They listen to the news in their cars, have news alerts going off on their phones all day, catch the evening news and then the 11 pm news before bed. No wonder they’re less optimistic! What you choose to look at will impact your mood. Remember, good news doesn’t get ratings,” she adds.

happysleeper

5. Don’t snooze. Instead just breathe.

When the alarm goes off give yourself a few minutes to just lie there, eyes closed focused on your breathing. Breathe in counting to 4 and then breathe out. Do a mental scan of your entire body from head to toe thanking your cells for restoring you as you slept. “Deep breathing is a form of meditation and in the morning, you have a small window of opportunity to decide what kind of day you want it to be,” says Dr. Hafeez.

 

6. Distract yourself with something that requires focus.

The key here is to pick something you truly enjoy doing and do it daily. It can be painting, coloring, yoga, a 20-minute walk or jog, listening to music and dancing around your living room. “When you are fully engaged in something, you can’t ruminate which leads to pessimism,” explains Dr. Hafeez.

 

7. Make feeling good top priority.

When you commit to feeling good you instantly start to think more optimistically. According to Dr. Hafeez, when you’re mindful of your own negativity and shift to a better feeling positive thought you feel powerful. You’ll feel like you can conquer anything when you can master your own mindset.

 

*Shared with permission.  Dr. Sanam Hafeez PsyD is a NYC based licensed clinical psychologist, teaching faculty member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College and the founder and Clinical Director of Comprehensive Consultation Psychological Services, P.C. a neuropsychological, developmental and educational center in Manhattan and Queens. 

Dr. Hafeez masterfully applies her years of experience connecting psychological implications to address some of today’s common issues such as body image, social media addiction, relationships, workplace stress, parenting and psychopathology (bipolar, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, etc…). In addition, Dr. Hafeez works with individuals who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), learning disabilities, attention and memory problems, and abuse. Dr. Hafeez often shares her credible expertise to various news outlets in New York City and frequently appears on CNN and Dr.Oz.

Connect with her via twitter @comprehendMind or www.comprehendthemind.com

Spring Fling Family Game Night Giveaway!

Ends 3/31Welcome to the Spring Fling Gift Guide Family Game Night Giveaway!

 

A tried and true way to get your family together and create memories is by having a family game night.  It’s through trial-and-error that I’ve found games that keep the focus of “competition” to a minimum (which creates way toooooo much anxiety and anger for some) and instead focus on games where you’re on your way to victory when you help your team… and laugh as much as possible.  Sounds like a great game night! Good luck in the Spring Fling Gift Guide Family Game Night Giveaway! (Enter below.)

This contest is hosted by the Social Media Gurus Network!

Below is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide.

Michigan Saving and More

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Tales From A Southern Mom

Heartbeats ~ Soul Stains

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Bohemian Babushka

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My Silly Little Gang

Mom Are We There Yet

Java John Z’s

Giveaway Gator

SaraLee’s Deals Steals & Giveaways

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Mint Green with Envy

Everyday Gizmos Sweeps & Views

Mami’s 3 Little Monkeys

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PaulaMS’ Giveaways, Reviews, & Freebies

Missy’s Product Reviews

Stingy, Thrifty, Broke

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Now let’s get to the sponsor!

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1 Lucky Winner Receives 4 Fabulous New 2017 Board Games! TRV $88!

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This giveaway is in no way endorsed, affiliated, or associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site. This Giveaway is valid in the United States Only and Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway event will end at 11:59 PM (EST) 3/31/17. The winner will have 48 hours to email their information back to mcushing7 at hotmail dot com or a new winner will be drawn, you may want to put this email address as safe as it could go to spam. The sponsor is responsible for shipping of the above prizes. No blog associated with this contests are responsible for prize fulfillment. If you would like to be a sponsor in a giveaway like this please email Melissa Cushing at mcushing7 (at)hotmail(dot) com. If you take an entry you must stay following for the entire contest or you will be disqualified.

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5 Tips To Rid Mosquitoes In Your Yard

 

5 Tips To Rid Mosquitoes In Your Yard - AnnAgainandagainReviews.com

Ah yes, the rain clouds have passed and the sunshine has hung around for a couple of days.  Time for yard work then enjoying the natural beauty of the yard.  But *smack* these darn *smack* mosquitoes are driving me crazy!  (I’m allergic to them so that makes it even worse.)  After researching natural ways to rid these highly annoying pests here are some tips I’ve found the most useful:

  • Plant Marigolds – The bright marigold not only add nice splashes of color to your garden borders or potted plants, it also gives of a scent which repels mosquitoes.  Marigolds contain Pyrethrum, a compound used in many insect repellents.
  • Dump Standing Water – mosquito larvae can exist in as little as 2 tablespoons of standing water. Children’s toys are the #1 culprits (here’s looking at you sand pails and water tables!)  These pests can develop in any size puddle that has been around for 4 days.  I know it’s convenient to keep a pail of water near your plants for quicker watering, but know that this also enables the creation and housing for the nasty mosquito.
  • Eliminate Decaying Foliage From Ground – Not only is removing fallen leaves from the yard better for your grass, it will eliminate a breeding ground for mosquitoes.   Fallen leaves, over time, create mold and/or fungus and mosquitoes love that stuff!  Mold/fungus is sought after meal for the mosquito so it’s best to remove leaves, branches, any plant from your yard that isn’t living.
  • Fill Your Pond With Mosquito Eating Fish – Stock any ornamental ponds with guppies, koi, or goldfish (most healthy, hungry fish will eliminate the majority of mosquito larvae from ponds).
  • Remove Debris (a.k.a. Tires) From Yard– The used tire has become the most important domestic mosquito producer in this country.  If you’ve done a little automotive repair, and have kept “Take tire to recycling center” on your To-Do List too long, now’s the time to take it away and check it off your list.

 

These are a few tips that I hope will help you rid your yard of the highly annoying mosquito so that you can enjoy your time in the comfort and beauty of your own backyard.

 

(*** Information sources:  Rutgers Dept. of Entomology – EarthEasy.com – Mr. Mister Mosquito Control)