Why is a positive attitude important? It might be easy to keep a smile on your face when life is going well, but it becomes more of a challenge when things get bad.
As someone who has been a pessimist, I have 12 learnings to share about the benefits of having a positive attitude.
1) Having a Positive Attitude Keeps Us Focused
Having a positive attitude is essential because it helps you stay focused on what matters. Life is full of ups and downs, but where we put our attention plays a huge role in what we get out of situations. If we have a negative attitude, we might focus on all the wrong things, whereas if we are positive, we will focus on the good.
While it is up to us to decide what is important or what matters and where we should focus, it is helpful to look at what we want more of. You might have a shitty day where multiple bad things happen, but if you choose to dwell on those things, the next day might be worse.
Whereas, if you focus on the positive, or more accurately, what you want more of, you might find that those things happen more, or at least you notice them more.
Having clear objectives about what you want out of life will make it easier to have a positive attitude, as you will see value in your day-to-day actions. At the same time, knowing what you want enables you to work out in your mind how to get it.
Staying positive and having goals makes it easier to get what you want, which is a hack that keeps you focused on getting what you want.
2) A Positive Attitude Gives Us Confidence
Another reason why having a positive attitude is essential is because it gives us the confidence to keep at what we are doing. We all have different sets of skills and abilities, but we also all have different levels of awareness about those things. This means that we sometimes might put effort into something that we aren’t good at or will take a lot of time to get great at.
While there is nothing wrong with putting in the effort to get better at something, if you don’t have a positive attitude about what you are doing, you might be quick to give up.
And this is what is great about a positive attitude because when you believe that improvement and getting better are possible, you can keep at the hard stuff even when you don’t see results right away.
Often confidence is seen as something different from attitude, and while this might be the case, believing in yourself and what you are doing is always going to make it easier to keep at it. And after all, what is confidence other than the feeling that you have prepared enough?
3) Being Optimistic Makes Us Happy
This one might be obvious, but it is important to note that having a positive attitude makes us happier. Without a doubt, there are things about our personality and thinking that we can’t control. Our genes and previous experiences can significantly impact us, while there isn’t much we can do about those things. But because of this, our attitude is critical.
There are things that we can’t control, but for the things that we can, it is important to put our best foot forward.
If you want to be happy, you need to take ownership of your feelings. It is always easy to blame other people or things for how we feel, but when it comes down to it, if we accept that we are in control of how we think, we will gain the power to be more positive about what happens.
Life can be difficult at times, and things won’t always go our way, but if we focus on having a positive attitude, we will always have a better chance of being happy.
4) Positivity Is Great For Our Health
In a previous article, we talked about the importance of purpose in our lives and how purpose relates to our health. From that perspective, I’d argue that a positive attitude in life often comes from living with purpose and having goals. And while attitude and purpose aren’t the same things, they are similar enough that the science is still relevant.
The key here is that the way we think about things affects their impact on our lives. Stress and worry are terrible for our health, but they seem to stem from having a negative outlook or attitude towards life.
On the other hand, having a more positive attitude will help us through the tough times in life and give us the stamina to work through our problems.
Health is a complicated topic with lots of moving parts. Still, it seems intuitively true that having a positive attitude and a positive lifestyle will be better than the opposite.
5) A Positive Attitude Opens Us Up To Success
Sometimes people are handed success through no action of their own, but more often, success comes from effort, practice and perseverance. Put another way, how we look at what we are doing is more important than anything else.
If you don’t believe that you can improve or get better, then you won’t put in the effort it takes to get those things.
Having a positive attitude is important because it encourages us to keep trying even if things aren’t working out as we originally planned. As I write this, I look back at all I have written before, and I see a massive pile of work. I don’t yet know what it takes to win at writing, but I know that I need to keep making progress because that is the only way I will be able to find success.
Part of what makes something possible is having a positive outlook on your efforts and the results that could come.
Often success comes down to the person willing to put in the most effort, but to put in the effort, you need to believe that your work matters and will make a difference.
The easiest way to make that happen is to have a positive attitude about what you are doing cause that will keep you motivated when things get tough.
6) Positivity Helps Us See Past Challenges
Life is full of challenges, some are big, and others are small, but all challenges require us to put in the work and effort to get past them. If we have a negative outlook on what we must do, we aren’t going to be motivated, and it is going to feel like a chore. Whereas, if we think positively about it, it will be easier to keep our motivation even if things don’t go as smoothly as we plan.
Having a positive attitude is important because if we see every challenge as an opportunity to improve or get better, we are constantly gaining from our efforts.
Think of it this way, if you had to climb a mountain and complained about every step, you would be carrying a lot of negativity, and things would constantly be getting worsen. But if you can see getting to the top as a goal, then every step is a motivation because you are getting closer to your destination.
Life is complicated and full of challenges; if you think positively about your situation, it will always be easier to keep going because you are constantly gaining and getting better from your efforts.
7) It Is Easier to Get Along With Other People When We’re Optimistic
I realize that people can be disappointing, especially when you don’t buy into all the fear porn that people try to sell every day. However, having a positive attitude gives you the power to look past some of the difficulties of interacting with other people.
My brother can be a real pain in the ass, as he always has strong opinions about things that he knows nothing about. And while this is incredibly frustrating at times, having a positive attitude makes it easier to see past his flaws when he is a jerk and accept him for who he is.
Everyone is different, and we all have our ways of seeing the world; we can let this get to us and cause trouble with our relationships. Or we can try to be more optimistic about the situation, accept what we can’t control, and work on what we can.
Having a positive attitude is crucial because it makes it easier to deal with difficult people, as you can see past their flaws and focus more on the objectives of the interaction.
8) A good Attitude Helps Us Avoid Laziness
In the past, I used to be a lot more cynical in my outlook on life; at that time, I also had a problem with procrastination; as it was destroying my life. But that slowly changed as I got more clear about what I wanted from my life and started to work towards it.
Having a goal makes us happier because we have something to work towards, and we can see progress along the way. Improvement also makes us feel good about what we are doing because we know we are working towards something that is significant to us.
At the same time, having a positive attitude makes it easier to see the value of goals, so we can plan them out and work towards them.
Laziness is often a result of not having any direction in our lives, and we become lazy when we don’t have a plan or don’t want more than what we’ve got. Having a positive outlook in life makes it easier to see value in setting goals and thus makes it easier to work towards them.
Having the motivation to work towards something important will also make you happier in the long run, so there is a double benefit to all of this.
9) We Can Be More Responsible With a Positive Attitude
Personal responsibility is important because it drives our actions and our efforts towards living more meaningful lives. Personal responsibility is also the acceptance that you have control over your life and that you can get some of the things you want if you work towards them and hold yourself accountable.
Having a positive attitude is crucial because it encourages us to see the value in our efforts and sticking to our plans.
It also helps because even when we fail, we still believe in the possibility of success, so we can keep at what we have started. Often, struggles lead to success, but without a positive attitude, it is sometimes difficult to see past the struggle and how it’s helping you get what you want.
When we believe that we can get what we want, we are more willing to work towards it, even when things get tricky. At the same time, having a positive outlook makes it more likely that we will believe that we can get what we want.
By having a positive attitude, we have the motivation to take responsibility and work towards what we want.
10) Positivity Spreads, So Our Outlook Can Help Those Around Us
As Jim Rohn says, “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” And while at times, you can’t always change the people you spend your time with, you can still try to be your best self. From there, your positivity will be able to spread to the people around you. So then, if you are part of someone else five, then your outlook is important to them.
Everyone has their personality and attitude, which we can’t do much about, except for ourselves.
If we cultivate positivity and work towards an optimistic attitude, that can spread to the people around us.
When we are positive, we make it easier for the people around us to feel the same way. But at the same time, the opposite is also true; if we are always pessimistic, that will also spread.
Living your life with purpose and meaning is satisfying and helps you maintain a positive outlook on life. With that positivity, you can be an inspiration for the people around you, which will help them live better lives.
11) A Positive View of Now, Creates A Better Future
The person you are today isn’t a result of what you did today; instead, it is what you did yesterday and the day before that. Put another way; we are always becoming who we are, so what we do matters more tomorrow than today. I might be making this a little confusing, but what matters is that we can create a better future by doing better today.
I was a lot less optimistic in the past, so I never worked towards anything that mattered to me. That meant that if I felt bad one day, I’d likely feel the same the next because I wasn’t doing anything to improve my state.
Now that I have goals and plans for the future, I’m constantly building up my progress. This means that while I get satisfaction from creating this article today, I’m still going to be getting satisfaction after a month because I’ll have written more.
Having a positive attitude is important because it helps us be motivated about what we are doing today.
But this makes a massive difference in the long run because our daily motivation leads to more significant progress over time and in the future.
12) Positivity Leads to Learning and Opportunities
Every time we step out of our comfort zone and try something new, we are open ourselves up to new opportunities and learning experiences. These challenges give us access to more options, which in turn gives us more choices. You might not know if you love what you are doing, but trying out different things can reveal that you like it more than other things.
Having a positive outlook on life will help you stick with things and prevent you from getting bogged down by the difficulties.
Often though, not sticking with something is the biggest obstacle to success and accomplishment.
With a positive outlook, you are opening yourself up to the possibility of learning or discovering new things that you didn’t know before. Think of it this way, if you don’t like to try new things or are convinced that they aren’t worth the effort, you will never try.
But never trying something also guarantees that you will never find out if you like it or not. So being optimistic about trying things out also opens you up to the possibility of discovering something you could love.
With everything in life, your attitude matters; at the same time, if you knew that having a positive attitude would make a huge difference, would that change your outlook?
I know that we can’t easily change our perspective, but there are ways that we can ease ourselves into something new.
From my experience, having a sense of purpose in life makes it much easier to have a positive attitude, so check out these questions that will help you find purpose and direction in your life. They might not give you all the answers, but it is an excellent place to help you get started.