Southeast Missouri State University student publication

The power of positivity: mentally, physically, spiritually

Friday, September 15, 2023
Graphic by Benjamin Schicker

In honor of National Positivity Day on September 13, it is time for SEMO students to reflect on how they can increase positive energy, while shooting down the negative thoughts that infiltrate the mind.

Negative thinking is becoming more and more evident as Americans check their phones, on average, 144 times a day (Fortune Well). According to a National Center for Health Research article, “More than one in three adults (38%) see social media use as harmful. Only 5% think that it’s only positive.”

Counselor at the Center for Behavioral Health and Accessibility Torie Grogan said in order to receive positive affirmation from scrolling through our cellular device (social media), one must be in touch with pages that give the right kind of uplifting message and inspiration.

“Most certainly that can be difficult because we know what we are exposed to,” Grogan said. “Whatever we give cognitive space to, grows mentally, so we would encourage more people to follow pages that give the right positive affirmation and inspiration.”

Grogan said developing certain practices in order to blossom the positivity for your mental state is one of the best ways people can improve their mindset.

“One of the things that we have to remember is that our brains are not hardwired towards happiness, rather they are hardwired towards survival,” Grogan said. “Reviewing positive quotes or affirmations, taking the time to write down some negative self-talk, and validating our feelings are good steps toward a positive mindset.”

Grogan said building positive energy can become an everyday reset for some. Once the right frame of mind is settled, positivity can become a contagious effort, which then in return, spreads to the ones that you love the most.

“Body language can help us understand others and ourselves,” according to an article by Dr. Kendra Cherry.

Graduate student and Counseling Clinic worker Cheyenne Cover said one thing she picks up on is how tense the body is because of the stress that is kept in.

“One thing that I pick up on is how tense the body is,” Cover said. “A lot of people hold stress in their shoulders, back, mouth, and even the way they squint their eyes”

According to Cover, something that can be done about bettering body language would involve having more awareness about your body and what has to be done to relieve the tension.

“First thing would be awareness and finding out what part of your body all of the negative tension is filtering through,” Cover said. “Secondly, once you have that awareness, find something that relieves the tension whether it is a walk or some sort of meditation.”

Cover also said there are many ways to relieve the stress, but you have to know it is there first.

According to the Mayo Clinic, positive thinking can lead to many benefits but most importantly, a healthier lifestyle.

Do not be afraid to speak up if you are having trouble trying to keep positivity in your life and know there are always people around that can assist you.

Contact the Center for Behavioral Health and Accessibility at (573)-986-6191 to schedule confidential appointments.