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Positive Thinking is a Brain Event

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Positive Thinking is a Brain Event

As much as we’re hugely in favor of positivity, reframing and growth mindset, I discovered that we’d yet to write an article with a specific focus on positive thinking. We have many positively oriented articles — in fact most of them are — because positive thinking is critical to success and happiness.

Recently, iCreateDaily community member, Shannon DeAnna Schofield, shared a powerful poem written by then teen, Chanie Gorkin. We share that poem and story further below. Even if you’ve seen that poem before, because it did go viral, it bears revisiting for a careful read, especially anytime you find yourself stuck in the doldrums.

For writers, doldrums is a cool word, but it’s not a cool place to hang out.

Positivity is powerful.

There is overwhelming evidence from research in positive psychology that people who are happy are more successful. 
~Beth Cabrera, PhD, writer, researcher, author

SOURCE: article, How Positivity Leads to Success

Creativity and Positivity

Positivity connects us to the creative, ideating areas of the brain. Sure… sadness and life’s struggles and dramas can be a catalyst for creativity, any emotion can be. However, the stereotype of the tragic or emotionally unstable artist is an outdated model.

Artists are maturing through the ages of art. Today’s most prolific and successful creators employ positivity, discipline and goal setting which leads to greater creative capacity and happiness.

Positivity leads to greater mental and emotional agility and adaptability. Beyond that, positive people are naturally happier, healthier and live longer with less illness.

Positivity increases creativity and capacity.

Positivity… opens us up, broadening the range of ideas that come to mind and also leads to greater creativity. 
~Beth Cabrera, PhD, writer, researcher, author

SOURCE: article, How Positivity Leads to Success

Positivity Boosts Brain Power and Happiness

Whether you’re more inclined to think in words or in visuals, replacing negatives with positive thoughts and images works. The power of positive thinking unequivocally works. Consistent daily practice makes a difference.

Beyond personal testimony, numerous studies have proven that positive thinking reduces negativity, worry, anxiety and depression.

In a series of recent studies, negative emotions were associated with increased disability due to mental and physical disorders,22 increased incidence of depression,23 increased suicide24 and increased mortality.
~SOURCE: PMID: 18043762, 2007 Study on Serotonin and the Brain,

Research on the Effects of Positive Thinking Is Proven To:

  • Reduce anxiety and Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)[1]
  • Improves productivity[2]
  • Increase optimism[3]
  • Increase happiness[4]
  • Alleviate stress
  • Improve mental health[5]
  • Mitigate depression[6]
  • Improve success[7]
  • Improve brain functioning[8]
  • Increase immunity[9][10]
  • Increase & Improve longevity[11]

People who manage stress effectively most or all of the time report greater well-being as they pass through later stages of life.
~2019 Study on lifestyle choices and brain health

Bottom line? Positive thinking is proven to increase the good and decrease the bad things in life. And… here’s the kicker: positivity is absolutely free, infinitely available to anyone and everyone! Now THAT is a win-win!!

If you’re struggling in a negative space, here are some tried and true tips and techniques that work with consistent application.

Positive mood… is an important predictor of health and longevity.
~SOURCE: 2007 Study, PMID: 18043762

10 Ways to Be More Positive

  1. Spend time in nature – If you’re in the city, urban parks and even houseplants can make a positive difference[12][13]
  2. Gardening / working with plants and soil
  3. Dancing, exercise, yoga, and dynamic movement, especially outdoors
  4. Healthy diet and adequate water
  5. Music / singing / Creating
  6. Associate with positive people
  7. Help others – contribution, kindness, service
  8. Reframe stinking thinking with positives
  9. Meditation, affirmations, prayer, and breathwork
  10. Goal planning and tracking – focus and momentum towards goals generates positivity

RELATED: How to Be More Positive

10 Ways to Be More Positive #PositiveThinking #Positivity #BeMorePositive #Creativity #iCreateDaily
Image by inno kurnia from Pixabay

Positive Thinking – Chanie Gorkin’s Story

Here’s an inspiring excerpt from an interview of Chanie’s mother, Dena Gorkin as covered on

The poem originated as a school assignment in which the students were told to write about their worst day ever, Dena Gorkin said, adding that her family is Hasidic and studies Hasidic philosophy.

“One of the major tenets of Hasidic philosophy is that the mind rules over the heart, that we are able to channel our emotions to the positive … that there is God in everything, and it is part of our mission in life to look for the good, and to find it and to spread it,” Gorkin said.

So when Chanie was given the assignment, she told the teacher that she doesn’t believe in a worst day ever, and used her writing skills to turn the question around.

Way to go, Chanie!!

“I was floored,” Dena Gorkin said of her reaction to the poem. “[That] a 16-year-old was thinking this deeply was really impressive to me.”

Worst Day Ever?

By Chanie Gorkin, iin 2015, at age 16

Today was the absolute worst day ever.
And don’t try to convince me that
There’s something good in every day
Because, when you take a closer look,
This world is a pretty evil place.
Even if
Some goodness does shine through once in a while

Satisfaction and happiness don’t last.
And it’s not true that
It’s all in the mind and heart.
True happiness can be obtained
Only if one’s surroundings are good
It’s not true that good exists
I’m sure you can agree that
The reality
My attitude
It’s all beyond my control
And you’ll never in a million years hear me say that
Today was a good day.

Now read from bottom to top
And see what I really feel about my day.

~Chanie Gorkin, as an 11th-grader in Brooklyn, New York, in 2015, in response to a school assignment to write about her worst day ever.

WOW!! Way to go, Chanie!! I hope she’s still writing and creating positivity in whatever she’s doing now.

WORST DAY EVER? Poem by Chanie Gorkin, as an 11th-grader in Brooklyn, New York, in 2015, in response to a school assignment to write about her worst day ever. #PositiveThinking #Positivity #CreateYourDay #YouHaveThePower #PositivePoem #iCreateDaily
Image by lilydust from Pixabay

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.
~Viktor Frankl, Nazi Germany prisoner, author-Man’s Search for Meaning, 1905-1997

Photo by Alexander Milo on Unsplash
VIKTOR FRANKL QUOTE: The last of the human freedoms to choose one's attitude... #ViktorFranklQuote #FranklQuote #ChooseYourWay #AttitudeQuote #Attitude #iCreateDaily

More Positive Thinking Quotes

Every thought releases some type of chemical. Focusing on positive thinking will release the feel good chemical, which in turn, creates more positivity.

Research shows that any form of positive ideation can be used to effectively counter worry.
PMID: 26802793

Happy brains are more creative, quicker, and more mentally alert.
~Susan Reynolds, author, Psychology Today article on Happy Brains

An Example of the Transformative Power of Positive Thinking

This story was shared on LinkedIn, and is a wonderful example of the proactive power of positive thinking, no matter what.

Jim Thorpe – Olympian

This is Jim Thorpe, a Native American from Oklahoma, discriminated against by his own American people and foreigners alike.

Look closely at the photo. He is wearing different shoes and socks. It was not a fashion statement. It was the 1912 Olympics and Jim represented his country in athletics.

On the morning of the competitions his shoes were stolen.

Fortunately, he ended up finding two shoes in a trash can. It is the pair that he is wearing in the photo. But one of the shoes was too big, so she had to use an extra sock. With those shoes he won two gold medals that day.

Feature Photo by Josh Riemer on Unsplash

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