“Positive anything is better than negative nothing.” ~Elbert Hubbard
It’s the season of Diwali, a festival celebrated with fervour by Indians all over the world. One of the customs of this festival is the ritual of spring-cleaning wherein a lot of time and effort is dedicated to thorough cleaning of the houses. Every nook and corner of the home is scrubbed hard to shine and look anew. It’s also that time of the year when we remove clutter from home – discarding things we do not need, giving it away to those who do and creating space for the new.
Having an obsession for all things neat and tidy (do not read OCD), this season strongly fuels my need for order. In true festive spirit, I have exhaustively indulged myself in the cleaning and de-cluttering traditions very seriously over the last few days. Organising things in their rightful place and packing off heaps and heaps of useless stuff into bags to give away. While spending all my energy into this tedious process, I’m amused at how things just get accumulated in our homes! And it sets me thinking…just the way a lot of unnecessary stuff gets accumulated in our minds too. Negative thinking for instance…
Negative thinking is alarmingly prevalent all around us, almost like an epidemic of sorts in today’s world. It seems easier to get into a whirlpool of negative thoughts and to remain stuck there. Negative thinking can sap our energies and before we realise, it can harm our bodies, mind and everything around us. In many ways, organising our physical space is making way to imbibe the positive elements into our minds and spirits too. This can then also be the time to de-clutter our minds with all the negativity and unnecessary trash we can do without. After all, there is a choice we can exercise, if we make a conscious effort to be aware.
Here are simple daily practices I have learnt over the years to bring in more positivity into our lives:
1. Positive thoughts – Catch yourself while thinking negatively and replace your negative thought with positive ones instantaneously.
2. Positive people – Surround yourself with people who do not put you down, whom you can learn from and exude a lot of positive energy.
3. Smile – It’s amazing how this one small curve on our face sets so many things straight. Even if you don’t feel like it completely, simply smile and feel the difference.
4. Inspirational reading – Reading books, quotes, articles, etc. that is motivating and encouraging is a helpful way to replace negative thinking.
5. Exercise – When you get moving, your endorphins get going. So quit the couch and do any form of fitness that suits you, daily.
6. Switch Off – Stay away from screen time and all gadgets that bombard you with negative information, thereby sapping your energy.
7. Music –Good music is therapeutic. Listen to the kind of music that you enjoy and see your mood change instantly.
8. Gratitude – Be thankful for everything you already have in life, sincerely from your heart.
It’s that time of the year when we must attempt to do away with darkness and light up – our homes, hearts and minds.