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Shake off the dreary.

December 28, 2010

What Experts Say…
“Downward spiral or upward spiral. As I see it, that’s your choice. We’re either on a positive trajectory or a negative one. Either we’re growing in goodness, becoming more creative and resilient, or we’re solidifying our bad habits, becoming more stagnant and rigid.”
Barbara L. Fredrickson, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology at University of North Carolina, in her book, Positivity.

In Other Words…
We can process things in the same old way—questioning people’s motives, fretting about dangers, dragging along resentments—or we can challenge ourselves to see things in new, more positive ways. When we allow our bad habits to make our decisions, we get more miserable. When we shake them off and choose to be more positive, we ascend to greater happiness.

How this Applies to You…
We can replace cynicism with compassion—trying to understand why people do what they do. We can drop fear and replace it with hope—believing that things do work out. We can drop resentments and replace them with understanding—finding new connection with people. We can choose to climb the stairway to greater positivity and happiness.

To Find Out More…
For an excellent (and free!) program on improving your personal well-being, check out The Personal Journey or Managing Stress at Arkansas Families.

For more in-depth reading we recommend Positivity by Barbara L. Fredrickson.

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