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Is your glass half-full or half-empty by Tina Y. Gerber-McCurley

A positive attitude means allowing yourself to stay optimistic and, as a result, hopefully, experience a lower rate of depression. The health benefits of a positive outlook may provide an increased life span, greater resistance to illness, anticipation of happiness, health, and success, and it helps you to develop better-coping skills during hardships and times of stress. Of course, having a positive attitude is not enough to get you through everything but people with a positive attitude start by fostering good thoughts.

It is easy to fall into the trap of negative attitude these days. The news, social media and what we watch on television make staying positive very challenging.

Positive thinking doesn't mean you ignore life's less pleasant situations. It means you approach them in a more positive and productive way. You think the best is going to happen, not the worst. When you have a positive outlook, life is brighter, and you become happier. It means being cheerful and hopeful, even when facing challenges. If you embrace a positive mindset, it is easier to face your challenges and persevere. Positive people look for the good in every situation and are grateful for what they have.

While my husband and I came from different backgrounds, my thoughts are mostly positive, while his, in my opinion, are more pessimistic. Things like, what he feels is, an inept government agency, regarding his treatment of medical concerns through the years and rightfully so. He believes I am an ostrich with my head in the sand, and while he uses logic and reason, his past experiences provide for a more negative response or experience to a changing and challenging situation beyond our control.

The secular (worldly) society approaches positive thinking like this. When someone trains their mind to focus on the positives, they begin to reap positive results, and they believe their belief changes things, so they erroneously say their "faith" in their abilities grows. Interestingly, the word "faith" never existed until Christianity came on the scene. Before then, it was always a derivative of the word belief.

It makes sense, as the word "Faith" describes an attribute of God, which He shares with those who "believe" in Him, as we release the stress and strain to Him.

Stress is a normal psychological and physical reaction to the demands of life. It is normal for everyone to experience stress, doubts, and fears. How one perceives those feelings and what you do with them can have a lasting impact. So, there can be such a thing as positive stress.

Often, individuals think God is giving them a hard time. God wants the best for all His children, and that includes you. Hard times teach us how to depend on God alone, instead of mixing our own assumptions with His. This hybrid approach interferes with God's guidance in what He knows, is positive, even when we can't make sense of the deflections along the path. It's an opportunity to grow and learn something new. To honour and glorify God and learn to trust. If you feel stuck in the rut of those negative attitudes and feelings, try to remember these challenges often seem much worse than they are. The awkward negative perspective is why many times, they may become overwhelming. It is important to realize everything passes in time; our role is to persevere.

Every Christian goes through tough times, and my husband and I are facing some of our most challenging times over the next few months, perhaps years. We know God is not distant; He does not want to see us struggle. Martin and I both understand God allows these hard times to bring us restoration, wholeness and develop the fruit of His own Spirit in us. God is preparing us for what lies ahead. What a Blessing. Life is not easy, but we can learn to do things when we trust God to give us wisdom and strength in all we do.

Regardless of whether you are a Christian or not, it's a good policy to avoid negative people and find habitually optimistic people who have figured out how to see the positive in situations and the brighter side of life. Positive people tend to see the glass as half-full instead of half-empty. God made us social creatures, and being part of a faithful body of believers can provide comfort, friendship and support during the good and bad. Romans 1:12, in the New Living Translation, says, "When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours."

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