The Secret to Authentic Positivity: A Beautiful Q&A With Positive Polly
You know when you meet a bright light in the world and their optimism and energy is so magnetic that you need to be friends with them, or follow them on social media, or do everything in your mighty power (outside of stalking) to surround yourself in their good vibes? Well, that’s basically how I would describe my blossoming friendship with miss Positive Polly. She’s Amy to me (because we’re buds, like that), but on Instagram, you will find her posting pithy maxims of positivity under the pseudonym, Positive Polly.
She’s a #girlboss with a fancy day job, a burgeoning essential oils guru, a practitioner in meditation and crystal healing and … Oh yeah, and she digs country music. A girl after my own heart, if there ever was one.
Immediately upon launching the #SelfLoveSessions, I knew I wanted to get Polly in the hot seat; not just because I’m a borderline love junkie hooked on her good vibes, but because I think in a world where it’s so easy to get caught up in the crazy of everyday life, to lose ourselves in the glorification of busy, and to forget to laugh, that sometimes we just need a little something (or someone) to bring us back down to earth, and remind us that life is good and we are lucky. That someone is Polly. You’re welcome in advance.
Without further ado, a beautiful Q&A with Positive Polly…
Hey, Polly! Welcome to the hot seat! In as little or as many words as you like...Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I have been told I am a walking contradiction … and I love it!
Professionally I am a qualified accountant and I manage three departments for the Fire Service.
In my spare time I have studied and gained certificates in crystal healing and meditation and I am about to complete my final exam in mindfulness.
I love pink and sparkles and makeup and pretty clothes, but I also like being outdoors, getting my hands dirty, grabbing life and living it.
My favorite things are my crystals, my incense, my singing bowl and my essential oils.
I live in the UK and love the space of the countryside, but I could do with a bit more sunshine here as I am a sun baby!
Let me get this straight — You're a qualified accountant with a full-time day job, but you have a certification in meditation and crystal healing, and you’re also studying mindfulness? How do you find the time to do it all? How do you maintain balance?
Haha yes! My outlook on life is that we only live once and so I want to do it all.
It's about making choices, I love my job but it is full time so I choose to take a day of leave if I want to attend an event for my self-development. Also, my free time is when I study — but it is not a chore to me — I really enjoy learning and I choose things that I am interested in...I think that is key.
Don't get me wrong, some days I do absolutely nothing, I sit on the sofa in my fluffy dressing gown and watch lots of films, that's fun too. And that's part of the balance. I listen to my body and mind, if I need a rest I take it. Also, I always make sure I get a good night's sleep, too! We can't function when we are too tired — I know when my bedtime is.
You are an actual real-life Super Woman. Now, tell me a bit about POSITIVE POLLY. What motivated you to start the Instagram account? What is your mission, there?
I am a naturally positive person. I am at my most comfortable when I am being silly and laughing or trying to help others see the bright side. And I had this niggling feeling that I wanted to create something to spread some smiles. It really did start off as simple as that. I never knew where this was going to lead but I followed my gut and created Positive Polly on Instagram.
From there, I actually found that I love writing and it came naturally to me to write my little quotes too. Through it all, I have met so many like-minded people, it has been a real joy to interact on Facebook and Instagram.
The main aim at the moment is to lift people up, give them tips for keeping positive, share my learning from all of my studies and create some good vibes.
Real talk: It's hard to always be so darn positive. How do you maintain your positivity and optimistic outlook when things get tough?
It sure is ... But it's do-able! So, here are a few of my tips:
1. Make sure you have someone you can talk to. When things get difficult or you feel down, it is important to talk it out sometimes. Saying things out loud can really help, and so does a different point of view.
2. Have a reality check. When people, situations, or events, trigger a negative reaction in us we need to take a moment to stop and have a reality check. Our knee-jerk response is natural but we don't have to let it run away with us. So, identify what is fact and whether your reaction is the best course of action. Once you have taken a moment, you then have a choice, switch it up to a more positive outlook or go down that negative path that feels crap. I know which I like to choose.
3. Rest. It is so important to rest your body and your mind. To take time out. Go to your happy place. You know when you feel frazzled and tired and you aren't at your best.
4. Hug. Just hug people as much as you can. I love it!
What is your personal definition of "Beauty"?
Beauty is what is emitted from a person’s soul. It is a quality of a thing or a person that activates intense pleasure or deep satisfaction.
In relation to an object this will be visual, however, in relation to a person, it is not purely a visual thing, because there are many layers to the feeling of seeing beauty. In people, I think it is that feeling you get from a person when they walk in a room. We live in a world where we are taught that beauty is tangible, and for me, that is just not the case.
There is so much pressure for women to fit society's skewed beauty norms. How has (or hasn't it) shaped your experiences as a woman today?
Ok, to be completely honest, it has made me very self conscious at times. But let's also remember that I grew up in the 90's when the people I aspired to be like were the Spice Girls — each of them were individual and that was their whole selling point. Back then perfect makeup and plastic surgery and filters were not the norm. So actually, as a teenager, I was a lot more confident and it is only in recent years with the social media boom that I have started to criticise myself.
The way I have decided to cope with this is to not compare myself to others, to listen to the people in my life that give me compliments, and to give myself the quick reality check that most images I compare myself to are edited, airbrushed and professional.
It's not easy, it really isn't, but unfortunately, I think it is something that most women have to deal with.
Just remember, one person's idea of beautiful is not the same as the next, and we are all individual for a reason. I am re-learning to embrace myself and I think we all need to do that.
What kind of role does "Self-Love" play in your life? Does it come naturally to you? Or is it something you have to work at?
It has definitely gotten harder. As I said before, there was a lot less comparison when I was younger, so it used to come naturally, but now it is a bit more work.
Self-love for me is being kind to oneself — both emotionally and physically. It's still a work in progress as I can still be negative when I look in the mirror.
I recently had the pleasure of asking the wonderful Gabrielle Bernstein her tips for self-love. She explained that we have to start with words of compassion and every morning we should talk to ourselves with kindness. As we do this our mindset will start to change. She brought me to tears and it ended up with me exclaiming "I AM AMAZING"!
You are AMAZING. Speaking of which — What do you absolutely LOVE about yourself (go ahead, don't be shy!)
Ok, let's do this...
My calf muscles, they have always been lovely and they make my legs look nice.
My dark eyes and hair because they are passed down from my nanny to my mum to me and I am proud of my background (my nanny is from Gibraltar).
And finally my laugh, it is ridiculous, actually, I have a range of laughs and I love them. I love laughing and making others laugh.
How do you practice self-care in your daily life?
I meditate most days, that is the biggest thing for me. It gives me time to give my mind a rest and it helps me sleep better.
Also when something tickles me and I get the giggles or I want to laugh, I go with it. I never hold a laugh back, it feels so good and I can feel that it is good for me.
When do you feel most confident?
I feel my most confident when I am being true to myself. When I speak and act from my heart and do things that light me up. I get really nervous in loads of situations but I always say it will never stop me.
One of my favorite quotes is "When you think you can't, do.” And that's because when you come out the other side and you overcame your nerves and fears you feel amazing.
On the topic of fave quotes...Do you have any mantras, credos, or quotes that you live by?
"It's all good".
"Kindness is key".
"Gratitude is the best attitude".
I believe that our thoughts create our reality so it is very important to make sure that our thoughts and the way that we speak to ourselves are positive. For example, if we say to ourselves we are unlucky then that is what will be. So we must change this up, even if it doesn't feel like anything is good at the time, we can still tell ourselves that it is.
What's your evening routine?
I get home from work sit down and catch up on Instagram and Facebook. Then I cook dinner and pop on a bit of TV to wind down. Once dinner is all cleared away I will either read, study or write, depending on what I feel like doing. Before bed, I will light my incense and meditate. My favorite meditation at the minute is to sit comfortably with my eyes closed and play and sing along to Jai-Jagdeesh - I Am Thine.
What advice would you give your teenaged self?
You know, there isn't much I would change. No matter how difficult, my experiences and choices have shaped me. I think it is important not to regret anything.
There is only one piece of advice I would give, and that is that people will always label you, people will always want to put you in a box — so, let them. You can't stop that. Don't waste your energy trying to prove them wrong. It is more of a reflection of them than you. Stay true to yourself and use your energy to shine your light and be who you want to be. Never compromise that.
Book of the moment?
Song of the moment?
Time of day?
Nail polish color?
Website to frequent?
Way to unwind?
Podcast to listen to?
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