#UpbeatAuthors: Boost Your Optimism Quotient

Sometimes it feels as though the world conspires to keep us down. But remember: the only thing over which we have total control is our attitude.

Here are a few tips to bolster optimism:

Revisit long-term dreams: You dream of being a New York Times best-seller? Imagine yourself on that list. How would being on the list change your life? Change you?

Get enough sleep: Drowsiness promotes pessimism.

Breathing & Hydration: Drink water. Lots of it. The human brain is 77-78% water. Drinking water keeps it healthy and gives it a boost. Same for deep breathing. Oxygen allows the brain to think more clearly. Clear thinking leads to positive thoughts.

Meditation: The practice doesn’t have to be fancy. There are plenty of free apps out there to get you started. Meditation really can help. I’ve used both the Calm and the Insight Timer apps.

Me Time: I’m an introvert, so I fiercely guard my down time. Doing something for yourself isn’t selfish. It’s self-nourishing.

Avoid negativity: This is easier to suggest than to practice. News about the state of the world bombards us; a downer person may be a co-worker, a spouse, a child. The worst thing in your life might be your job, but you have to work. I’ve developed little “tricks” to help me. When a co-worker goes on a rant, I hum Vangelis’s “Hymne“, sometimes to myself, sometimes under my breath. I try to look for the humor in any situation.

Smile: Forcing a smile can lead to a genuine smile.