Updated: Feb 15
There's incredible science backing the power of positivity, proving it infinitely more beneficial than just serving as an inspirational catchphrase, and I can't help but wonder, why aren't doctors prescribing positivity to their patients?
Encouraging others to remain positive is often a way we support loved ones in trying times. However, if we don't take it to heart it can be lost on us and feel like a blanket expression. While there's no financial gain for the medical community in self-healing, there's serious gain for you, at no cost.
So, before you brush that pearl of wisdom to the way side, let's look at the science behind positivity.
Why think positive?
We have a tendency in our rushed, overly critical society to get caught up in widespread negativity and fear-mongering. Negativity is contagious and we tend to drown in it as we try to keep our heads above water each and every day. But, simple awareness of our mindset can make all the difference!
Like negativity, positivity is also contagious, and when you think positively, it changes more than your mind, it enhances your immunity, influences the mindset of those around you, and pumps beneficial energy into your environment.
Sounds great. But where's the proof, Einstein?
There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. -Albert Einstein
What's Einstein got to do with it?
Albert Einstein rocked the scientific community with his theories regarding physical laws of nature, convinced that all matter is energy which travels through space and time. The complexities of this law are far beyond my expertise, but what was once a highly ridiculed theory, is now widely accepted and remains a foundational element in modern science.
In fact, biophysicists studying the human energy field elaborate on Einstein's theory with the concept that human consciousness is a form of energy that vibrates and creates a field of energy around us (aka our aura), ultimately connecting us to the universe. Simply put, thoughts travel.
Where am I going with this?
Once quantum physicists discovered that subatomic particles, known as photons, travel faster than the speed of light, it opened the door to better understand the power of our consciousness.
When we have negative thoughts, such as fear, anger, anxiety, and hate, these emotions are moved through our minds, bodies, and energy fields via electrons, while positive thoughts and feelings, such as love, peace, gratitude, prayer, are moved through our minds, bodies, and energy fields by these faster-than-the-speed-of-light photons.
Are you still with me?
If the scientists are accurate, this means that positive thoughts are generated in our minds and manifest as positive energy that travels through space and time very quickly, so no matter where you are, photons act as portals that enable communication.
Hang tight, we're almost there...
With this information, researchers were excited to start experimenting. In a study by cardiologist Randolph Byrd, 300 hospital patients were recruited for a study and separated into either a prayed for group or a control group that was not prayed for. Results showed significant improvement in all health parameters for patients in the prayed for group, while there were no significant improvements in the control group. And get this, the patients in the prayed for group were hundreds of miles away from those praying for them.
In similar subsequent studies by the Spindrift Organization, researchers took this same concept, and had participants pray for the metabolic rate of a specific group of plants, while the control group did not pray for the control plants. The outcome had similar results as the previous study, where the prayed for plants grew significantly more than the non prayed for plants, suggesting there is a connectedness to all things in the universe via photons which are induced by positive thoughts. You can now understand why Einstein's work is also accepted by mystically inclined individuals as proof of the Divine.
Understanding the science behind positivity is interesting, but seeing it unfold in your own life is far more amazing. If we implement daily reminders that encourage and inspire us to use this super power to our advantage, think of the things we could accomplish!
Simple ways to implement a positive mindset
Positive Affirmations. Compliments are great to hand out to others, but don't forget to give them to yourself as well. Verbally remind yourself first thing in the morning or right before going to bed how incredible you are or how well you're doing.
Prayer. While I always encourage exploring and practicing your spirituality, talking to the Heavens doesn't have to be about religion.
Mindful Meditation. Clearing your head is a fantastic way to reboot. If you struggle clearing your mind in a traditional meditation, try a mindful meditation, like focusing on your body's movements as you flow through a yoga or Tai Chi routine.
Imagine your breath. This practice is an amazing mental purifier. Just lay down in a comfortable position, rest your arms at your side and close your eyes. Inhale deeply through your nose until you fill your lungs with air while imagining that the air you're inspiring is a white cloud of clean, pure, pollution-free, healing oxygen. Pause for a moment before exhaling, and as you begin exhaling slowly through your mouth imagine the expired air is a black cloud full of dirty toxic dead cells that your body is purging through your lungs. Continue practicing this breathing exercise for 5 to10 minutes.
Visualizations. Commonly used to help treat PTSD, visualizing yourself in a positive scenario with a positive outcome is a great foundation to build positive thoughts on.
Place inspiring, loving notes, and reminders in places you'll often see them. I like to stick mine in cabinets, drawers, and on mirrors to remind myself not to let my internal critic get me down. (It's very therapeutic to write these down and then read them aloud to yourself.)
Sending you photons to infinity and beyond!
Check out more tips to help boost your immune system
McTaggart, L. (2008).The Intention Experiment. Free Press: NY.
Murphy, S. E., Clare O'Donoghue, M., Drazich, E. H., Blackwell, S. E., Christina Nobre, A., & Holmes, E. A. (2015). Imagining a brighter future: the effect of positive imagery training on mood, prospective mental imagery and emotional bias in older adults. Psychiatry research, 230(1), https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychres.2015.07.059
Ross C. L. (2019). Energy Medicine: Current Status and Future Perspectives. Global advances in health and medicine, 8, 2164956119831221. https://doi.org/10.1177/2164956119831221
Sanders C. L. (2014). Speculations about Bystander and Biophotons. Dose-response : a publication of International Hormesis Society, 12(4), https://doi.org/10.2203/dose-response
Seaward, B.L. (2018). Managing stress: Principles and strategies for health and well-being (9th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.