18 Positive Thinking Exercises to make your Day Count

Do you have a bad day? Maybe you missed a necessary appointment, a date failed, or your presentation turned out badly at an office meeting.

How do you keep it positive during the day or the rest of the week?

Notably, as humans, we will always have positive and negative thoughts flowing through our minds. That’s acceptable.

The negative thoughts you are having in your mind right now could be bad news, an awful experience, or a negative remark about you.

Is there something you could do about your negative thoughts and feelings, or should you let them settle in and make you bitter, angry, and miserable?

Don’t think about that route because we got eighteen positive thinking exercises that could be the antidote you need for your negativity.

Let’s get straight to them.

18 Positive Thinking Exercises For Success

1. Pause and Take a Breath

Have you ever talked so fast? Maybe the MC called on you to give a speech at a family meeting or a friend’s wedding, and all hell broke loose.

After the speech, you don’t remember a word you said.

You let nervousness reign messing you up. You probably finished talking while burning up on the inside on how you made a fool of yourself.

Next time you find yourself in this situation, take things slow. Pause and take deep breaths.

Focusing on your breath will bring you back to the moment. You will stop focusing on yourself, get your mind calmer, and handle the situation better.

2. Use the Mirror Technique

When you stand in front of a mirror, what do you see? Yourself, right?

Can you use positive words to describe the image you see in front of you?

Your comments could go like, “I’m confident,” “I’m in control.” I love and accept the person I am.”, “I’m fearfully and wonderfully made.”

You could make this a routine and do this every morning when you wake up. The positive words you speak of yourself keep you cheerful, enabling you to handle the rest of the day with a positive mindset.

3. Believe you are Succeeding

It’s easy to give up when you see everything is going to fail. That is going to make you negative.

Whether it was a short-term or long-term project you were dealing with, you don’t want to go through with it as if you are forced to handle it.

Photo byAva MotivefromPexels

In everything you do, believe things will work out, and of course, you will start coming up with ways of making them work.

Thank me when you succeed.

4. Be Active

One other way to exercise positivity is to be active. A sedentary lifestyle is more routine and doesn’t count much in keeping you positive, especially when you feel negative.

Get out there and take a hike.

Lift weights, and you will feel you have pumped something out of your chest.

At the end of it all, you will feel more positive than when you started.

5. Talk and laugh at the Challenges you are facing

I didn’t say you share all your problems with the world, but making fun of them makes you ease up and stop killing yourself on the inside.

In fact, you will see them as usual and something temporal that you can go through and overcome.

When things get tough, we are constantly told, get tougher, but we should be careful not to do this at the expense of our health.

Photo byZen ChungfromPexels

Don’t play strong when you are dying on the inside. Talk and laugh at life challenges.

6. Practice Positive Affirmation

Positive affirmations are positive phrases that you can repeat over your life.

They help you counter the negative thinking pattern you have always had and believed about you. An example of a positive affirmation could be, “I’m getting better and better every day.”, “I’m making it.”

If you are having issues with your self-esteem, you could tell yourself, “I’m a problem solver,” “I’m beautiful.”, “I adapt quickly to change.”

Repeating these positive phrases in your life help to change the negative thinking pattern you have had before.

Try it for some time and see the difference it brings to your life.

7. Don’t be too hard on yourself

Sometimes we set the bar too high, and when things go south, we hit ourselves and put ourselves down.

That shouldn’t be you.

Accept that you are a human who is prone to err and give yourself a second chance.

8. Keep the Company of Positive People

Photo byKoolShootersfromPexels

How we feel can be infectious to the surrounding people.

If you enter a room full of happy and energetic people, chances are you will be the most enthusiastic person in line.

The same is true when the people surrounding you are negative. You will be the next negative person.

If your company is always talking about scarcity, dirty politics, and rising crime, they will leave you with nothing else to see but only negativity.

The best way to think positively is to associate with positive thinkers.

9. Set Realistic Goals

To prevent negative thinking from creeping into your life, you need to be realistic with yourself.

One way we keep ourselves negative is by creating unrealistic goals that we cannot achieve.

Your goals need to be SMART. If it is a big goal, break it down into action steps to make it more manageable and avoid burning out.

That’s how you go from negative to positive thinking.

10. Treat Problems as a Test for your Next Chapter of Life

Every cloud has a silver lining.

Whatever hurdle you face, always see it as a lesson for your next chapter of life.

No problem is permanent. Don’t look at the problem, but focus on the person you are becoming.

A life challenge or a difficult situation right now is a test for your next promotion.

11. Can you use positive words when Talking? It makes a lot of difference.

Photo byRenda Eko RiyadifromPexels

“Can’t work,” “Not possible,” “won’t,” “just surviving.” Use less of such words in your daily talk.

And if possible, avoid them at all costs when describing or referring to yourself.

Opportunities come dressed in overalls. When you cling to negative words such as “I can’t handle it better than Mr. X,” or “it’s not my thing,” talk about what you can do best.

If you stick to positive words long enough, your mind will start changing towards a positive outlook on life, and you will see life isn’t as bad as you thought it was.

12. Track your Thoughts

We are good at watching other things but our thoughts. That’s how negative thinking finds a way into our brain, develops into a pattern, and becomes second nature to us.

Learn to keep track of your thoughts. Treat negative thoughts as passing clouds and let the positive ones settle in.

Some thoughts will make you angry, bitter, or unhappy with yourself.

Yes, those are the negative thoughts you should track and identify whether it is a pattern that you can drop altogether instead of allowing them to take root.

13. You Could Use a Little Help from an Inspirational Book

Are you a reader? If yes, you could use your reading habit to be a positive thinker by reading the inspirational books around you.

Reading about someone succeeding or going through a similar problem and overcoming it will motivate you.

You will be optimistic and open your mind again to endless possibilities to overcome your hurdles.

14. Be Happy Where you Are

I get it. The pay isn’t good. Your relationship is turning out differently than you thought it was. You wish to live in a better place than you are now.

Holding these kinds of thoughts only makes you miserable and negative.

Is there another side of the coin?

As Dr. Joe Vitale, “The fastest way to get where you want is to be happy with where you are.”

Life is a journey, and the difference between where you are and where you want to be is time. What you are doing with your time is what makes the difference.

15. Analyze a problem for what it is and find the best solution to it

Okay, you are heading to a destination North, and you just realized you don’t have enough bus fare. That’s a problem.

Should you sit down and start counting the other problems you face and how they are making you miserable, or should you find a workable solution to the current situation?

The fare to Destination North = X

Cash available = Y

Cash needed = X-Y

How to raise (X-Y)

  • Check your emergency fund
  • Borrow a loan
  • Ask a friend
  • Postpone the journey

You just analyzed a problem and found solutions to solving it. Could you use the same approach to solving other challenges in life instead of crying at your problems?

16. Let go of the Past

The past is at the last second. Whether you were bombarded with success or failure, it just remains the past.

Don’t bask too long in the glory of the yesteryears. Neither should you tarry longer than is healthy for you in your past failures.

To move forward as fast, you need to make peace with your past.

You cannot change what happened in the past, but you can change your present for a better tomorrow.

Dwelling on the past makes you negative, killing your optimism in life.

17. Count your Blessings

It’s easier said than done. But start counting, and you will get shocked.

In your pursuit of success and a better life, you have taken the things you worked hard to gain for granted.

The smartphone in your hand just allowed you to read this blog post from the comfort of wherever. Ooh, no, you are in the toilet? Hahaha.

But you get the drift, right?

That time you feel you are losing it; when your life gets you between a rock and a hard place; when progress seems slow, count your blessings.

You will find yourself more optimistic about handling the present challenges better.

18. Embrace your Inner Child

Photo byKenex Media safromPexels

It helps to be playful sometimes.

Children are always animated and have little time to worry about their problems because there is always someone standing by to take care of it.

Getting playful can change your moods. Like a child, you can trust a higher power and let go of your problems. Play and let go.

In Matthew 11:28, we are told to cast our heavy burdens to Jesus, and he will give us rest.

Isn’t it positive to know that you cast your burdens on someone else?


Positive thinking exercises are excellent for getting rid of negativity in your life.

You may not master them in a week or even a month, but keeping them consistent will make you more optimistic and a positive person in life.

You can also subscribe to our blog and grab yourself a free e-book on staying positive.