Whatever is going through our minds usually has a pretty strong impact on our day-to-day lives. There’s no doubt that at some point during your job hunt or stress-inducing revision days, you’ve been told to ‘think positive!’, or ‘look on the bright side’. Encouragement to stay positive is all well and good, but why is it so damn hard to actually pull through and do as they say?

With an increasing amount of young people suffering from anxiety and depression due to their lack of employment, we wanted to give you all a bit of a boost. So we’ve employed the help of Richard Harris, the CEO of Tutor Desk and Super Tutor, who has given frequent lectures on self-growth and productivity. He believes that, to achieve your full potential, you must have a positive mindset if you really want to secure that dream job and be genuinely happy. We interviewed Richard and asked all about positivity during the job search, when applying for courses and to achieve our goals.

Richard on… why it’s so hard to ‘think positively’

It’s not a trait that comes easily for the majority of us because negative thoughts and memories are much more powerful than positive ones. For starters, a lot us struggle with self-esteem, always taking on and remembering the negative comments.

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“These emotional assaults leave scars or ‘imprints’ which repeat themselves in future similar situations, so when you find yourself faced with a challenge these old ‘ghosts’ come back to haunt you” explains Richard. “Secondly, these tasks can seem overwhelming (when not broken down in to small achievable mini-chunks), and the feeling of overwhelm quickly turns to frustration.”

But being positive is a game-changer in securing jobs, he explains. Thoughts become things – remember that. “The famous ‘placebo effect‘ reliably shows in quite literally millions of medical trails that our own minds can make us well,” we’re told. “The most exciting part is that scientists have not the faintest idea of how it works, only that our intention somehow becomes a physical reality. Sports psychologists, world class business leaders and even hypnotists all reliably use the magical power of positive intention to will in to existence their desired outcomes. Thoughts become things; that is why positive mindset is not just important but critical.”

Richard on… owning your dreams

It’s okay to feel negative, we’re told, because it can be a huge motivator and lead you into a fury of focused productivity. Yes, habits of underachievement can set further habits of the same thing, but being complacent can be crippling.

“The trick for any person to achieve any goal is for them to take ownership of the dream,” he explains. “Job searching, applying for courses and progressing in a career in general does have some pretty challenging patches. The only way to get through the late night deadlines, long hours of study, applications and frustrating setbacks is by knowing how awesome it will be when we arrive.

“Think how great it will be to achieve the job/dream, knowing that you truly earned it. Imagine yourself achieving and excelling in your dream career, visualise glorious images of the better life that you are working towards, and, most importantly, make sure the destination is a place of your own choosing. Very few will power through tough sacrifices for goals set by other people so it’s vital that you choose a path that is right for you.”

Richard on… simple steps to take

“When I am in my death bed with only a few days left of life, I want to know that I took advantage of everything I had, and lived a grand existence,” Richard tells us when we ask him how he stays positive and productive.

‘Never complain and never explain’ is a simple phrase he uses. “The first way to think more positively is to put a ban on winging. Winging and complaining are the external manifestations of internal negativity.”

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“Another way is to hang around with other positive people. Mentality is contagious, so try to surround yourself with mindsets you admire and want to emulate.”

Although staying positive is a lot about the mind, it’s not only about the mind. We’re told that taking care of your body is another way to feel terrific. Yes, we know you’ve heard it before, but it’s been clinically proven that exercise is much better than drugs at beating depression. “The side effects of exercise include increased energy, better health and radiant beauty – all attributes which help put you ahead in the competitive employment market.”

“Also, take responsibility for your destiny. If you find you are getting rejected, ask yourself how you can improve yourself so that universities or employers could never let you go. This way, your rejections can become a source of inspiration for your search. Good luck!”

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