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Finding Optimism with a Fresh Perspective

This post was sponsored by Frost Bank and all opinions are my own. Thank you to the brands who make Cup of Charisma possible.

Optimism is a powerful thing. Something as simple as wearing a smile can spark a chain reaction in the people surrounding you. If you have the power to carry your happiness where ever you go and share it with others, what would prevent you from doing anything other than that. The truth is that optimism is a gift, and sometimes it’s a conscious effort. Living an optimistic life can be a matter of shifting to fresh perspectives and becoming a “glass half full” kind of person. As someone who is constantly striving for happiness and positivity, I’m so excited to partner with Frost Bank to share how I’m opting for optimism in 2019.

One of my favorite quotes is from “Eat, Pray, Love” author Elizabeth Gilbert: “Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it.” Rather than travel thousands of miles for happiness, I believe we can strive to find it in our own homes and backyards. Happiness can be found in our friendships, nature, families, neighborhoods, and the little moments we may overlook. Opting for optimism means opening our eyes and gaining a fresh perspective on the world around you.

In my experience last year’s 30-Day Optimism Challenge with Frost, I found that when I went out of my way to show kindness and optimism, it also rubbed off on others. It’s my hope that Frost’s research and my little dose of encouragement to live a happy life rubs off on you, too!

What Research Suggests

Aside from the expected side effect of laughter, optimism can result in a more stable financial future. Frost released a fascinating study this year that shows how our attitude and mindset toward money makes an impact on our financial health. Being positive can help you overcome rough patches and celebrate the good things in life. Everyone faces financial setbacks in life, but your attitude impacts how well you handle stress. According to the study, optimists experience 145 fewer days of financial stress per year than pessimists. Positive psychology expert Michelle Gielan concluded that optimists are even more likely to reach their financial goals as compared to pessimists.

How Do You WANT to Feel?

Frost’s study is compelling and will have you ready to shift the attitude you take toward money. Last year, money felt like such a stressful element of my life. As I took the leap to take Cup of Charisma fulltime, I was leaving the financial security of my 9-to-5 job and jumping into an abyss that was far from my control. Owning your own business or freelancing pulls the carpet from under you, forcing you to figure out your own health insurance and keep track of your invoices and expenses. In early spring, I felt like I was taking a crash course in business management that I was failing.

Here’s how I shifted MY mindset: I decided I wanted to feel in control of my income. I connected with my friends who were also facing financial struggles, and we decided to make a gameplan. Together, the three of us would meet monthly to set our own personal and professional financial goals. We kept each other accountable and would gather over cocktails to talk about things like mortgages, compare the best budgeting apps, or share the latest chapter in a financial book we read. We’d even text each other with a slew of horn blowing emojis to announce that we paid off our student loan debt or increased our credit score. It may sound a little nerdy, but we LOVED discovering our financial freedom together.

My Journey in Finding Optimism

With my newfound money mindset, came a wave of productivity. Believe me, I know that optimism is a process. People face unexpected hardships and unaccounted for expenses without warning, and life doesn’t stop to give us a break. While developing an optimistic outlook and routine for happiness, I’ve seen immense benefits to my overall well-being. Everyone’s routine is unique to them, but here are a few of the ways I’m choosing optimism in my daily life.

Practicing Daily Gratitude

For roughly one year, I’ve been waking up and writing down three things I’m grateful for each day. Studies have shown that jotting down your thoughts in a gratitude journal and reflecting on the good things in your life can benefit your mood and improve your overall happiness. When some days are more difficult than others, I remember that I am lucky to be another day older, hug my partner and see the beauty in the world.

Creating a Budget and Sticking to It!

If you’ve typed in “How to Budget” into your Google search bar, you’re far from alone. According to Frost’s study, 1.29 people search this phrase. I created my first budget at the end of last year, and it’s reminded me that I actually do have money to use on personal enjoyment if I plan well. I make the time and set aside the money to treat myself to things like a manicure or my gym membership because I have a clear picture of where all of my money is going. It’s also been instrumental in helping save for my upcoming move.

Finding Time for my Health

On New Year’s Day, I committed to taking better care of my physical health. Going to the gym at least three times a week fuels me with endorphins. My favorite activity for optimism is yoga, which leaves me feeling purposeful and in tune with my emotions.

Building Relationships with Inspiring Women

I can’t stress the power of positive female relationships enough. Each day, I realize how grateful I am for the reliable and inspiring women I’ve had the opportunity to meet. When you surround yourself with people who carry a passion for life, you swiftly find your own fire is ignited.

Exploring New Hobbies

What’s the one thing you always wanted to learn but never had the time to do? I challenge you to reserve one hour a week to do it. Whether it’s learning a language or picking up a new craft, finding hobbies that feed our creativity and interests is so important to our happiness. I’ve always said this, but I decided to finally practice what I preach. Last month, I signed up for voice lessons! I loved musical theatre growing up, but was never classically trained. So now, at 29, I decided there’s no expiration date on our passions. I’ve been attending weekly vocal coaching with an opera singer in Houston, and it’s been pretty wild! I implore you to take the crazy idea you wrote down and find a way to make it a reality, too.

Unplug and Spend Quality Time with My Family

Step away from the smartphone. I repeat, STEP AWAY FROM THE SMART PHONE. I am the first one to admit that the pressures of being an influencer can get me down. In this industry, we are constantly evaluating our worth with a set of numbers and observing the successes of other content creators from behind a screen. I’m always happy to see people succeed in this line of work, but bloggers would be lying if they told you they never developed “why not me?” syndrome. It’s easy to look at the successes of others and forget how far you’ve come. For this reason, I take weekly breaks for 1-2 days at a time and unplug completely. During this time, I listen to my favorite records and read paperback books. I rid myself of all screens and make sure to be fully present in my relationship.

Optimism is unique to each person. What are a few ways that you tackle optimism?

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