The way that you perceive yourself, others, and events affects your actions, your mood, and your emotions. Often, we think of events as having a clear meaning. If you made a mistake at work, for instance, maybe you felt that it was a problem that dragged down your performance. Instead of perceiving the event in that negative light, you could instead view that mistake as an opportunity instead of as a negative problem. By choosing to frame events positively, you can improve your long-term outcomes and respond better to adversity. Here are some ways that you can learn more about the power of perception.

Perception Plays a Big Role in Your Happiness

Happiness is all about how you feel about yourself. And how you feel is often tied to your expectations. Did you get that big promotion? Did you graduate on time? Did your relationship take the next step? If things didn’t go your way, how are you responding? Are you blaming yourself and sulking? Are you shutting yourself off from the world? Or are you responding positively and using what you learned to do better next time? If you perceive these events as a positive opportunity, then you can feel happier. You might even come to appreciate the fact that you didn’t get it right the first time, so that you can learn more and grow throughout the process.

Changing the Way You Perceive Events

You don’t change the way that you perceive events over night. After all, our perception is something that has been conditioned into us over years and years. You must be mindful enough to think about how certain situations make you feel. If you are feeling negative and upset, think about why. Is it a specific person, event, or action that you took? Think about reframing this event and considering what lessons you can learn. For example, if you didn’t get the promotion, maybe you can learn more about networking and improve your skills so that you’ll look even better next time.

Learning Not to Adopt the Framing of Others

Humans are social creatures, and one of the most common Be Happy things we do is to take on the emotions and feelings of the group. When there is a negative presence in the group, this can actually be detrimental for you personally and professionally. Make sure that you take the time to consider how you feel, and make sure that you aren’t perceiving events negatively because of the poor influence of others. After all, misery loves company.

Perception is all about choice. You choose how you perceive and frame events, people, and even yourself and your own actions. You might notice that people with poor attitudes often perceive themselves as failing at a task. Instead of feeling inadequate and having a poor mood, you would be much better off viewing that failure as a chance to learn and get better. Choose to be positive and choose to frame events in a way that is beneficial to you in the long-term. When you adopt the negative framing and perceptions of others, you put yourself at a disadvantage and make it easier to quit in the face of adversity.

* Be the Buzz image credit goes to: Tanya Santos.

* Be Happy image credit goes to: Alex Block.