17 Positive Psychology Tips to Prime Positivity

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That’s how I felt after a client call this a.m. I thought, “Hey, I am the one who is supposed to help HIM feel this way!” But he was super appreciative at the end of the call. Talk about a win win with a positivity spin. An emotional high.

These are moments I think being a coach is the best career in the universe. Where else do you get to help motivated folks shine the light on what is RIGHT about their lives? To be there with them as they focus on what they want and gleefully help them lasso it. Woo hoo!

I immediately wanted to pause to take notes on what happened in that session. What was it about this session that both of us were ready to rock and roll and yell, “Bring on the day!” How did my client go from “Mr. Angry” to “Mr. Mindfully Masterful” with his goals crystal clear?

Not that you always want to analyze, but I was curious to explore my coaching positivity process for today’s more fulfilled client.

What Positive Psychology coaching applications did I notice during our session?

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Here goes, priming for positivity (sounds like a great TV show!). I added some resources for you, too:

1. Look for the good.

Rather than focus on life’s BS and pain, focus on what is going right. Let it sink in. (Shelley Gable).

2. “Broaden and Build” positive emotions.

(Barbara Fredrickson, “Positivity”)

Be mindful of your positive emotion. Stack up your good stuff Legos. You’ll create your high-rise of happiness, meaning, and thriving.

3. Write for 5′ about one thing or a tons of things that went well for your today.

(Bob Emmons, “Gratitude”)

Smile as you review your 24 strengths and see how many you used today. (viame.org). God bless you in heaven, Chris Peterson.

4. Be aware of your thinking style.

Are you using “promotion” (forward ho!) or “prevention thinking” (You need to be careful to do things just so or you fear you may accomplish your goal)? Heidi Halvorson’s new book, “Focus” reminds you that both are OK, but the more you are mindful of how you choose to reach your goals, the more you will tend to be happier along life’s way.

5. Smile and share your happiness.

Smiling actually helps your nervous system put you in a more upbeat frame of mind. Even if you don’t feel like smiling, do it anyway! Smiling is contagious. Your smile lights joy in others (Ulf Dimberg).

6. Hit the PAUSE button when you feel negativity.

Be flexible, open and willing to accept it. Negativity is normal. Observe it. Look it into the eye, and give it space. Don’t let your “Don’t Get Eaten Machine” run you. Face your fears. Act on your values in new ways to bring your focus and attention back to where you choose it to be to feel better.

I am forever grateful to Joe Ciarrochi for enlightening me to new applications in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, ACT (Also see Russ Harris’ books). Joe and Todd Kashdan have a terrific new book, “Mindfulness, Acceptance and Positive Psychology”.It lights your way to new invaluable, life-altering, fun learning.

7. Watch your reactivity.

What are you telling yourself? What verbal rackets are you running? If your self-talk is loaded with “if only” or “should’s, have to’s or must’s” or “I’m never going to get any better!”, you might want to hit your pause button. What you tell yourself dictates how you feel (Albert Ellis). Observe yourself, then formulate an action plan. Stuck? Get a coach!

8. Deep breathe, do deep muscle relaxation (Jacobsen), yoga, or meditate.

Whatever puts you in a place of PEACE. Even a few moments will help you mentally and physically. And get up from your computer and stretch!

9. Cut yourself some slack!

This, too, shall pass. Self-compassion helps the medicine go down. Ease up dude! (Carl Rogers and a zillion others). Yes, you may need/choose to use your GRIT along the way, courage and perseverance, but you ARE creative and worthy (Angela Duckworth).

10. Face your vulnerability.

Brene Brown’s new book, “Daring Greatly” may open doors. You are OK and your fears in life are normal! But don’t sit in them. Face them, don’t blame others, and accept them. Use your values to move forward. Control is an illusion. Life shifts. Be courageous (Robert Biswas-Diener, “Courage”) and curious (Todd Kashdan, “Curious”) .

11. Use your positive mantras.

Two that came up in today’s session were: “I get better every day!” and “Direction, not perfection”. See Annie Zirkel’s sweet little book, “A Pocket Full of Mantras” for a whole slew of fun, cool mantras.

12. Review PERMA.

Marty Seligman’s acronym for Positive emotions, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning and Accomplishment. His book, “Flourish” guides your way.

13. Be Open and flexible.

Life is like mercury. Sink your teeth into accepting that and have frivolous fun flow PLAY along the way (Stuart Brown, “Play”)!

14. Remember to practice self-care.

You are your most valuable commodity. “Eat, Move, and Sleep” is a great upcoming book by Gallop noted author, Tom Rath. I was tickled to help a tad with it. I am so grateful to know Tom, and his book is an inspiration!

15. Remember you can create your best life every day!

Read Caroline Miller’s book, “Creating Your Best Life” for a ton of fun, doable specific stategies.

16. Share your joys and foibles with the ones you love.

Find out the scientific definition of love in Fredrickson’s new book, “Love 2.0”

17. Are you a “giver”, “taker” or “matcher”?

See how each style affects how you live your life. Hint, each style has its own dangers and rewards. Read Adam Grant’s new book, ” Give and Take” and enjoy taking the quiz. It really blew me away. Are you like me and need to pull in the reigns on giving? Or maybe you are a matcher. You give, but you better get something in return, too.

I can’t believe all these positive psychology coaching applications bubbled up in one 45′ cool coaching session, but they did! No wonder my client and I were smiling as we bid adieu. Cool coaching adventures.

Now you know why coaching ignites joy, meaning, and fulfillment.

If you are a coach, I challenge you to stop after you have a great moving forward session. See how many coaching strategies delighted you. Bet you’ll be as amazed as I was. Magic coaching momentum!

Gratitude to Ben Dean, Mentor Coach founder, who continues to offer me the opportunity to take classes from the best positive psychology researchers and trainers. Living is learning!

How about you?

Do you like learning? Is that you I see printing this out as a mini positivity resource reminder? Just sayin’…


Want a fun way to review positivity? Grab a copy…

Thank you all for making my book, Photo Adventures in Cuba a continued Amazon bestseller!

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