How I Stay Positive in the Face of Adversity

“Be the kind of energy, that no matter where you go, you always add positive vibes to the spaces and people around you.”

I’m quite a positive person usually, but it’s easy to remain upbeat on days when everything is going to plan. Sadly, this isn’t always the case and I think we all have those days where everything just keeps going wrong, don’t we? It’s on those days that it can be useful to learn some techniques for keeping your positivity up!

I had a day recently where I really struggled to maintain my positive vibes.  I’d recently had my fourth baby, just fourteen months after my third.  It was my first week on my own with all four children as my husband had returned to work. It was my most stressful day of the week anyway as my eldest had swimming and karate after school that day.

I was feeling good as I’d got the oldest two into school on time with babies in tow and spent a lovely stress free day at home with my smallest ones.  Everything was on track for the rest of the day to go swimmingly.  I planned to pick the girls up from school, get home where I’d have 45 minutes in which to feed the baby and get the girls to pack their swimming bags.

Of course, when I got home, the house was covered with feathers . . . the cat had brought a bird in!  Thanks Universe.  I stepped with trepidation into the house trying to spot the carcass that would await me, told the children to sit down in the living room and not move until Mummy had sorted it.  Couldn’t see the thing in the living or dining room so moved into the kitchen, where the bird was very much alive and well and flapping around my head! I panicked, I’m irrationally scared of them, so I screamed, and then the 5 year old screamed as did the toddler and before I knew what they were all crying.

I pacified the children with a giant box of chocolates I’d been bought as a ‘New Baby’ present and headed back into the kitchen where I opened all of the doors and windows and attempted to shoo the creature out of the house with a broom handle.  I was panicking, the bird was panicking and neither of us were getting anywhere.  So I left everything wide open, shut the kitchen door and returned to my children.

By this point I had twenty minutes until we had to leave for swimming, so I decided I’d just have to hope that the bird would fly out of its own accord and continue with my original plan.  I got the girls to do their bags, whilst I fed the baby.  Checked the kitchen.  Bird was curled up in the corner of the windowsill, right by the open window!

So I popped round to tell the neighbors I was leaving my house wide open and ask them to keep an ear open, then left for the swimming pool with my four bambinos.

Then when we were nearly there, but on a 60 mile an hour road . . . I had a tyre blow out!  Most frightening experience of my life.  I’ve never had a car accident or anything like that and obviously it was just made so much worse by the fact that all four of my babies were with me and all I could think about was keeping them safe, but I was so scared I wouldn’t be able to.

Unaware of what had really happened, I managed to coast the car safely into the swimming pool and park up.  In the chaos at home, I’d forgotten to bring my phone, so I sent the girls in for their lesson and asked to use the phone at reception.  I called my mum and asked her to pick us up at the end of their lesson, take us to McDonald’s, drop the eldest at karate and drop us home – which she did, God bless her.  She even came in and vacuumed up the bird feathers for me!  Our friend the bird was nowhere to be found.

Day from hell, right?

And yet, sat at home on my sofa, with a very large glass of wine and my babies safely tucked up in their beds, I was still smiling.  Despite it all, I knew I had plenty to be thankful for . . . plus, I saw the humor!  I started to think about how it is that I keep my positive vibes high, especially on the days when the world seems to be against me.  And I’ve decided to share what I learned with you here, in the hope it helps you keep your positivity raised too.  Here’s how I keep my positive vibes flowing . . .

I focus on what I’m thankful for and what I have achieved.

When I have time to reflect, I don’t sit and wallow about everything that has gone wrong. If you take the example of my very bad day above, when I finally had time to think I was just so thankful that we were all safe and well.  I felt an amazing sense of achievement that despite it all, I’d done it! My children were well cared for, dropped off and picked up on time and made it to both swimming and karate.

I call on my tribe.

When it’s all getting on top of me, I call on those nearest and dearest to me.  Whether that’s for practical help or just a friendly ear, I know their good energy will help me turn the tide on that terrible day.  Just hearing the words ‘I love you’ makes your vibrations rise instantly.

I don’t sweat the small stuff.

Going back to my day from hell, does it really matter that on that day my children ate a vast amount of chocolate and had McDonald’s for dinner? No, not really.  It was what was needed to get me through it and it’s not like they eat that way every day.  I try to apply this attitude to all adverse situations.  When things are going wrong, I concentrate on the things that are really needed and I take care of myself.  Even if that means taking a breather for a moment to calm my mind and think how best to proceed.

I let go of the things I can’t control

Sometimes, life is sent to try us.  Negative things are going to happen that there’s absolutely nothing we can do about them and because there’s nothing we can do about them – there really is absolutely no sense in worrying over them.  This technique is easier said than done, but practice makes perfect.  I find talking to myself out loud really helps.  So in the moment I’m telling myself ‘There’s nothing I can do about this.  Just breathe. Let it go. Now, where do I go from here?’  After a while you don’t need to talk to yourself anymore as it just becomes the natural way you deal with things.

I meditate

I discovered meditation a few years ago and find it has improved my life massively.  Setting aside time each day to completely relax your mind and focus on your own energies is a brilliant way to raise your overall positivity all the time.  When you become a naturally positive person, that energy flows into every situation – even the bad ones.  And, you can also meditate in the moment, even if it’s just for a few seconds.  Just shut your eyes and find your balance and inner peace.  You’ll be amazed the effect that has on an adverse situation.

I seek out joy

When life is spinning around me, I ask myself ‘What will bring me joy right now?’ Whether that’s staring into the faces of my babies, blasting some music and dancing my troubles away, taking a walk in nature, reaching out to a friend or pouring myself a glass of wine at the end of the day – I find my joy.  You can bring moments of joy into the very worst situations and then you have those moments to focus on, rather than all the bad ones.

I think about what I’ve learned

Every bad day contains a lesson and if you allow yourself time to think about what it is you’ve learned, then the day is never wasted.  Tough times can make you stronger and when you feel that things have happened for a reason, it really helps to keep your positivity flowing.

I share my positive vibes with others

We humans are social creatures, we thrive off each other.  In a difficult and tense situation a smile and a laugh goes a very long way.  If you’ve got to laugh or cry . . . always go for the laugh.  Laugh and the world laughs with you.  I always try to act with kindness and with love and I do so without expecting reward.  These kind of positive vibes flow into every corner of you wellbeing and that of those around you.

It’s okay to have a quiet day, or a bumpy day or even a downright disastrous day!  What’s important is the way you approach that day.  The important thing to remember is your big vision and to know that the bumps in the road are just a part of your journey.  Remember the big picture and remember to paint yourself into the best picture of your life using the brightest, boldest colors!

Do you have any tips on how you stay positive in the face of adversity?

Becky works at Country Court Care where she see’s first-hand the importance of being a positive person and sharing your optimism with those around you.  She brings joy into the lives of older people every day and they also bring joy to her.  Her job is truly a vocation, but when she’s not at work or running around after her clan of small people she enjoys reading, writing, mindfulness and meditation, music, dancing and trips to the Spa!


Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

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