The Healing Power of Hope
Of all the many emotions and feeling states we can experience, psychologists agree that ‘hope’ might be the most important. People who are hopeful are happier, healthier, resilient, spiritually empowered and even more academically and athletically gifted.
While more dour personalities tend to lack focus and just deal with what happens to them, hopeful people usually are working towards several goals at once. If they hit a roadblock, they immediately implement “Plan B,” and continue their progress.
Hopefulness and gratitude go hand in hand, as does the ability to establish and nurture strong relationships both personally and professionally. Hopeful people are more open, trusting and motivated than those who are more suspicious or withdrawn, which means that hopefulness is more likely to generate positive outcomes from the world.
Perhaps the best news is that a hopeful attitude can be a learned skill. It’s worth knowing that once learned, the attitude of hopefulness is self-perpetuating. Here are some exercises that if done on a regular basis can help you create a healthy, happy, hopeful outlook for your life:
- Conscious Breathing. Slow, deep, rhythmic belly breathing, like that taught at Optimum Health Institute (OHI), is a healing tonic for body, mind, emotions, and spirit. It helps release stress and old baggage as it enhances personal and spiritual growth.
- Cultivate and nurture your spiritual community. Fellowship with like-minded, God-centered friends uplifts you and provides healing validation.
- Just…smile! Smile and make eye contact with the next 10 people you pass, and see what happens. Smiles are universal expressions of friendship and trust and establish common ground. They’re also contagious.
- Reflect on what someone you admire would do. When you find yourself facing a challenge, quickly think of a person you consider a positive role model and ask yourself how they would handle the situation. There are ALWAYS options.
- Stretch your spiritual muscles. Experiment with a new sacred practice – toning, for instance. Drumming. Ceremonial dancing, or deep meditation. By going within, you will find answers, and reassurance, and hope.
- Be kind. Make it a new habit of performing at least one random act of simple kindness each day. Thank the cashier by name as you’re checking out at the grocery store. Wave ‘thank you’ to the driver who let you merge in front of her. Drop off a carload of gently used items at Goodwill. As Mother Theresa said, “It’s not about doing great things. It’s about doing small things with great love.”
Learn even more ways to cultivate a powerful sense of hope and optimism with an extended stay at OHI San Diego or OHI Austin as we celebrate 40 years of holistic healing. Take advantage of Optimum Summer Retreat multiple-week special offers through the week beginning 9-10-17. Visit our website at www.optimumhealth.org , and call us at (800) 993-4325 to make your reservation.