Optimism can significantly impact our mental wellness; creating a positive mindset that increases our resiliency in the face of adversity. Optimism can protect against depression, even for people who are at risk. An optimistic outlook makes people more resistant to stress and may even help people live longer. To learn more, visit Kidshealth.org.
We hear our own voice more than any other, so it is important that we are speaking kindly to ourselves, especially when difficult moments arise. Using a positive affirmation or mantra can help us feel empowered while staying present while facing challenges. Making a list can be helpful, and starting each morning with an encouraging message to yourself can set the tone for the day. Below are a few suggestions to get you started:
I am enough (Who I am is enough).
Even my worst day only lasts 24 hours.
I will stay positive, and work on a solution.
I have the power to create change.
I am grounded, confident and worthy.
Journaling can help promote an optimistic mindset when we focus on our strengths and positive experiences. Use a writing prompt, such as the ones below.
I feel powerful when…
I feel loved when…
Today, I am grateful for…
This week, I will work hard to…
Find a jar or container to be your Gratitude Jar (for a craft activity, decorate your jar/container) and cut out small strips of paper to write on. Take a moment to reflect on the positives; write it down and place it in the jar. Try making this a practice, and soon you will see your Gratitude Jar fill up with positive moments. When the jar is full, read the grateful messages and revisit those memories again.
Decorate colorful index cards or shapes cut from card stock and leave them for others to find (in the park, at the grocery store, at school). Add words of kindness that can have a ripple effect; you never know who needs to hear a hopeful message. Some ideas include:
I hope this brightens your day
You are enough!
You are special!
You are making a difference!
You are making an impact on the world!
You are doing a great job!
You are appreciated!
I believe in you!