Today’s Solutions: November 29, 2021

When something goes wrong at work, it’s normal to take that negative experience and hold onto it for the rest of the day —  or maybe even for the whole week. That tendency is a product of how our brains are wired, and it exposes us to extra, unneeded stress. But it doesn’t have to be like this. Although it can be difficult, it’s possible to reframe our negative experiences, let go of negativity, and focus on the good. Here are three strategies that will help you train your mind to focus more on the positive.

First strategy: practice “gain framing”. According to Alison Ledgerwood, a social psychologist at UC Davis, the way in which you recall your own experiences can alter the way you see them. When you describe the glass as half-full, that’s what Ledgerwood calls a ‘gain frame,’ because you are focusing on what’s been gained. On the flip side, seeing the glass as half-empty is a ‘loss frame’. By using gain framing to describe your experiences to others, you will start to see the positives in any given situation.

Second strategy: acknowledges one good thing. While it’s easy to assume that venting will help get rid of your negative emotions, dwelling instead on one good thing that happened that day can prompt your brain to switch directions — which is ultimately more helpful. For optimal practice, Ledgerwood suggests taking pen to paper — even if it feels difficult at the moment.

Third strategy: respond counterintuitively. Basically, the way we react at the moment can make a significant difference in how we think about a situation later. Instead of snapping at someone who has ticked you off, trying forgiving them. If your waitress at a cafe is super grumpy, leave a nice tip anyway. By responding counterintuitively, what you’re doing is stopping your brain from the cycle of dwelling on the negative, and instead, spreading the positive to others.

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Italian garden installation shows us how much CO2 trees store

Trees are the lungs of our planet—we know that trees are needed because they sequester dangerous CO2 emissions, but do we really know how much we depend on them to clean the air we breathe? ... Read More

Go Cubs: The inspiring story of California’s undefeated deaf football team

The California School for the Deaf in Riverside had never won a division championship football game in its 68-year history, but that all changed this year when the team not only won a championship game ... Read More

New biomarker for Alzheimer’s discovered

Alzheimer’s is a complex neurological disease, with scientists still trying to piece together the complete puzzle of factors that contribute to its development. A number of different genetic and environmental risks have been determined─though more ... Read More

Bread and Roses uses floristry to empower refugee women in London

Rebuilding a life in a foreign country as a refugee is not an easy task. This is especially true for women, who often face more barriers than men as they are less likely to have ... Read More

Study: Schools of fish operate like a superorganism

The world under the waves is still a mystery, with 95 percent of oceans yet to be explored. Scientists are always uncovering many new and exciting aspects of this ecosystem; from the importance of fish ... Read More

New biodegradable glitter lets you sparkle guilt-free

As sparkly and magical as it is, glitter is actually a form of microplastic, and even products that claim to contain biodegradable glitter rarely actually are. This is a difficult issue to tackle because countries ... Read More