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Image of woman looking hopeful with the blog title:How to Stay Optimistic in Pessimistic Times

5 Ways to Stay Optimistic in Pessimistic Times

Image of woman looking hopeful with the blog title:How to Stay Optimistic in Pessimistic Times

As the pandemic continues to impact our lifestyles and businesses, it’s getting harder to stay optimistic. Here are 5 ways to stay positive.

On the BIGG success Show hear us share the strategies we are using to stay optimistic during these pessimistic times. Here’s a a summary of that discussion…

We’ve seen posts from friends, and we’ve talked with entrepreneurs who are down and out.

The pandemic continues to wear on, in addition to social unrest, a severe economic downturn, political and social strife, a major energy crisis in our biggest energy state… all hitting us all at once.

How do we rise above the struggles and negativity, and stay optimistic and hopeful for the future?

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image of a dog jumping into the air to reflect our article about bounce-back-ability

3 Ways to Buck Up Your Bounce-Back-Ability

image of a dog jumping into the air to reflect our article about bounce-back-ability

Bounce-back-ability is your ability to come back at a higher level than where you started. We share three ways to buck it up.

We discuss how to bounce back from tough times on The BIGG Success Show. Here’s a summary of our conversation.

Tough times call for tough people. And boy, are we having some tough times.

How can you get through them?

You need entrepreneurial brain food. It’s like comfort food for the mind, and we are serving some of that up with this topic!

As the two of us discussed how to return to normal, a word popped into our conversation:

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How to Be Happy Today

ways to be more happy | BIGG SuccessIn her wonderful book, The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want, Sonja Lyubomirsky tells you how to be happy today.

She shares twelve simple activities to attract happiness. We’ve listed them here for you along with our thoughts on each one.

1) Expressing gratitude

If you haven’t done so already, start today building a habit of gratitude. Be thankful for all your riches. Research has shown that gratitude leads to reaching your goals.

2) Cultivating optimism

We all have a tendency one way or the other. Listen carefully to yourself. If you tend to put a pessimistic spin on things, break the habit. Optimism brings many benefits.

3) Avoiding overthinking and social comparison

Comparing yourself to others will cost you now and in the future. If you stack up favorably, you may get overconfident. You may not push as hard. If others are doing better than you, you may feel disheartened.

Stop looking at others. Look only at your personal and professional progress and take action accordingly.

4) Practicing acts of kindness

When you help people, you help yourself. It’s like a drug. In fact, the term “helper’s high” has been coined to describe the endorphin rush experienced by acts of kindness.

5) Nurturing social relationships

Life comes down to two things: relationships and experiences. Sure, you can experience things alone. Some of the time, you should!

But wouldn’t you rather share your invigorating experiences with people you love? Building relationships is one of the most important activities if you want to reach BIGG success.

6) Developing strategies for coping

The single, biggest difference between people who reach BIGG success and those who don’t is perseverance. Everybody runs full-speed ahead into a wall from time to time. Everyone has bad days.

All of us feel discouraged at times. The most successful find ways to deal with it.

7) Learning to forgive

It’s not easy to forgive someone who has seriously wronged you. It is necessary, however. As long as you don’t forgive them, you hold on to them. You’re stuck in the past.

Move on. Get rid of this mental clutter.

8) Increasing flow experiences

Flow is when you get so caught up in an activity that the world goes into suspension. Time passes without a care. You are completely immersed in the task at hand.

If you can’t find this flow in your work, get a hobby. In fact, get a hobby anyway. It’s what the most successful people do.

9) Savoring life’s joys

While this one is closely related to the first one, there is a reason to include it separately. It emphasizes the importance of moving out of the complex world to see things more simply. It will help you rediscover your creativity!

10) Committing to your goals

Losers make promises; winners make commitments. We discussed this a little bit under the sixth point. But the key here is to understand the link between your goals and your vision.

11) Practicing Religion and Spirituality

You are a three-in-one: body, mind, and spirit. You need to feed all three if you want to achieve the most happiness. Believe in a power greater than yourself. And realize that peace on earth begins with you.

12) Taking Care of Your Body

We get busy. We often fail to take care of our bodies the way we should. The two of us struggle with this one as we press for our own BIGG success.

But then we remind ourselves, that it only takes five minutes. It may not be ideal, but it’s better than nothing!

We like the fact that these twelve activities were all framed in the active tense. The song tells us, “Don’t worry, be happy.”

The better way of thinking is: Take action. Be happy today. Now that’s BIGG success!

What makes you happy?

Image in this post from stock.xchng

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These People Just Do Not Get It

optimists There is a group of people that most people just don’t understand. They face the same problems we all face …

… but they just don’t get it. They don’t get how bad these problems are this time around.

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When they listen to the news, it’s the same news we all hear.

But they just don’t get it … how bad the news really is.

They have the same concerns for themselves and their families that we all have. But there is one difference between this group and the majority of people …

They think their lives are going to get better this year! The future is bright. So bright, they probably wear shades! They think the economy will turn around.

And there’s a startling number of Americans who think this way. In fact, according to a recent survey, more than one-third of all Americans are in this group. And only one out of five people said they worry about the economy on a daily basis.

Are they tuning out?

So what do you think? Are these people who think their personal situation will improve this year nuts? Or do you think they’re onto something? Or maybe they’re on something?

Here’s what they may not be on … they may not be reading, watching, or listening to the news! Bad news does seem to be good news to the news media. We’ve spoken with a large number of people over the last month or so who say they’ve tuned out the news.

Sometimes that’s a good coping mechanism. If you’re tired of hearing gloom and doom, it might be more productive to focus on something more positive.

Challenge spells opportunity

We put ourselves in this group of optimistic people. We think things will get better this year. That’s not to say we won’t still see some hiccups, but it appears that there is significant strength just below the surface.

While we face some major challenges right now, that spells opportunity for bigg goal-getters. But don’t expect to win a spelling bee if you spell it that way!

Getting real

The article we mentioned earlier cites some of the benefits of being an optimist. On average, optimists get sick less, live longer, and appear to have a higher quality of life.

This is consistent with other research we’ve seen on the benefits of being an optimist. Seeing the glass half-full does seem to pay off. But while it’s important to look for the silver lining in any dark cloud, and we don’t think it pays to be pessimistic, we also think that we should be realistic.

We have to sort through all the information in front of us to try to determine what the objective reality is. To make sure that our perceptions aren’t creating a bias as we look at a particular situation.

Because we’re more likely to make mistakes if we’re overly optimistic. We’ll see opportunities that aren’t really there. And unfortunately, we must admit that we’re speaking from experience here.

But pessimists miss out on opportunities because they either don’t see it or they don’t act on what they see.

Bigg goal-getters are an optimistic group. While one-third of the people in this survey said they think things will get better this year, we bet that the overwhelming majority of our community would put themselves in that category.

And that’s a good thing … as long as we filter our optimism with a healthy dose of realism. Be positively real. That’s the recipe for bigg success!

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Speaking of Bigg Success, did you know you can get the tips and
tools you need to be a BIGG success emailed to you every week?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks so much for reading our post today. Join us next time when we discuss why you should stop trying to fit into the world. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00339-022609.mp3

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Do You Make Your Friends Happy?

happy_people A recent study of happiness showed that the birds you flock with make a bigg difference. Nicholas Christaskis with the Harvard Medical School and James Fowler from the University of California at San Diego found that the more connections you have with happy people, the more likely you are to be happy.

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It cuts both ways

They likened it to a quilt. If the person in the patch next to you is unhappy, it increases the likelihood that you’ll also be happy by seven percent.

If the person next to you is happy, it increases the odds that you’ll be happy by fifteen percent. It’s interesting to note that we seem to have some resilience to unhappy people since happy people tend to rub off twice as often as unhappy people.

But the good news is that is doesn’t stop there. If the person who knows the person next to you (i.e. the person two patches away) is happy, the probability that you’ll also be happy increases ten percent. So happy people one step removed still increases the odds that you’ll be happy more than that unhappy person next to you!

In a quest to find out how happy we could be once we get to Kevin Bacon’s patch (six patches of separation) on the quilt, the researchers found that if the person three blocks away is happy, your chances of being happy increase six percent.
Happiness is contagious!

4 questions to discover if you spread happiness

To determine if someone was happy, the researchers asked four questions. During the past week, how often …

  1. Did you enjoy life?
  2. Were you happy?
  3. Did you feel hopeful about the future?
  4. Did you feel that you were just as good as other people?

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marylynnI feel blessed because I have positive responses to each and every one of these questions. I guess I’m a happy person.

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georgeI think I’m a happy person as well. In fact, if I remember right, I was voted the “Happiest” person in high school! But when I look closely at these questions, it makes me think. Like the first question … I enjoy my life, but how often do I stop and recognize it?

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This study was released recently, but imagine how you might have responded if you were asked the third question at the height of the financial crisis. Uncertainty creates fear, but as these questions show, it’s important to remain optimistic in any environment. That’s where happy people come in – they’ll help you have a brighter outlook no matter what the situation!

There’s one more benefit to hanging out with happy people. The researchers reference a study done in 1984 that showed that having an extra $5,000 increased a person's chances of being happy by about two percent. Based on those results and the results of this study, the researchers conclude that a happy friend is worth $20,000!

They say a happy friend is worth $20,000. We’ll borrow from MasterCard – we think having a happy friend is … priceless!

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The Bigg Success Weekly may not be priceless, but it is FREE!
Subscribe today to get the tips and tools you need to be a bigg success!

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We really appreciate you checking in with us today. Join us next time when we discuss the three categories of spending. Keeping them in mind will keep your budget in line! Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00285-121208.mp3

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(Image in today's post by merala)