Have hope

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No need for “fingers crossed” or pulling a wish bone. Develop hope and live a long and happy life says Life Coach Carole Ann Rice

What does hope mean to you? Crossing your fingers? Praying for a positive outcome? Looking on the bright side or trying to keeping upbeat when all around looks bleak.  To me hope is a great act of courage. With super hero power it flies in the face of practicality and the facts, it defies cynicism and resignation and it is the little voice that dares to whisper “maybe” when the world is bellowing “no!”.

Being of a hopeful heart usually means a strong faith in something good; of things getting better and an acceptance of what is.  For some it would be a choice that takes strength of will and mindset management to keep in place while for others it can be a natural part of a sunny disposition.  Now research has shown that those who have hope in positive outcomes can actually increase their health and wellbeing; even in cases of chronic illness.

Psychologists are coming around to the thought that hope is the most important state or emotion we can experience.  It can be the key to good health, the predictor to a meaningful existence and a booster to professional or athletic performance. Hope doesn’t have to be the result of a charmed life or a beloved upbringing as research spearheaded by Anthony Scioli, professor of psychology of Keene State University of New Hampshire, reveals it is a state you can acquire, nurture and develop.

Hope is a rare and precious commodity worth cultivating as hopeful people are known to have higher self esteem, take better care of themselves and have a greater tolerance of pain and better immune systems. The study showed that when the depressed elderly were taught to nourish hope their happiness levels rose, they felt more gratitude and were able to laugh at life more freely.

Brave, wise and inspirational are the hopeful.  So let’s all raise our spirits and trust levels with these few simple coaching tips.

  • Have clear fun and fulfilling goals to work towards – for that day, that week, a month or a year’s time.
  • Practice gratitude for what you have
  • Take pleasure in the small things
  • Remember you have succeeded or survived difficult times in the past.  You will do again
  • Consciously choose to smile and laugh more.  Aim to make 5 people laugh a day
  • Try to dwell on what’s good not what’s deficient or missing
  • Accept what is and make peace with it
  • Learn to laugh at yourself – without doing that you miss the biggest joke of all

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