Negative thinking inherently affects your outlook in life and may make you pessimistic. Your negative beliefs may encourage you to overlook the positives of a situation to focus on the negatives.
You should know that you’re not alone. Know that many people suffer from negative thinking. Almost everyone experiences them daily, and because of this, it’s vital to:
Recognize what triggers it
Understand why it happens
Know how to overcome it
If you don’t let go of negative thinking, you’ll likely experience stress, anxiety, and sadness. It can be challenging to stop negative thoughts when they begin. Even if you try to shift your focus to positive thoughts, you may fail. After all, it isn’t as easy as it sounds. Also, you might think that becoming a positive thinker is the only solution. Unfortunately, it isn’t as simple as that.
To avoid it from going that far, here are some powerful ways for you to stop dwelling on negativities:
1. Change Your Mindset
Your mindset is very powerful. It’s key to practice shifting your mindset to one that is preferable. Every individual needs different training when it comes to altering their thoughts. The training you choose should be tailored based on what negative beliefs you want to eliminate and what positive components you wish to retain.
Stick to a mindset that will help you think positively. Start a routine, try your best to maintain it, and don’t make room for your old thoughts to capture your attention. Let these mantras to live by helping you focus on the present as you feed yourself with positive words and encouragement.
2. Find Something Good Out Of A Bad Situation
Having setbacks or failures can create bleak situations, and negativity will then begin to creep in and weigh you down. To counteract that, you better assess your current situation by asking yourself some exploratory questions.
Aside from gaining some insight, you can also find comfort and solace as you put a stop to everything and give yourself time to think. However, be careful. Some questions may evoke negative emotions. Take a deep breath and be as neutral as you can when answering your own inquiries.
Here are some great questions you can use:
What are the positive aspects of the situation?
What can you do differently to improve your chances of success next time?
How can you use your current situation to your advantage?
By asking yourself these questions, you can evaluate how you can cope if you ever experience a similar situation again. It will also recalibrate your knee-jerk response to a much-refined reaction.
3. Understand The Way You Think
It’s possible to influence your thoughts if you can understand them. Therefore, it’s crucial to pause and take a moment to consider your current mentality.
Is your outlook more positive or negative? Are you more optimistic or pessimistic when dealing with a challenge? If you ask yourself questions like these, you can gain some insight into your thinking style.
Your thinking style defines how you approach things and problems in life. There are five common styles: idealists, synthesists, pragmatists, realists, and analysts.
If you feel your thinking style is making you a negative thinker, you might want to explore the reasons behind it. For example, do you always think negatively of yourself because you haven’t reached your ideal self? If you answered yes, maybe being an idealist isn’t the style suited for you. It might be better for you to become a realist instead.
4. Develop New Habits
Instead of focusing on getting rid of your negative thinking patterns, focus on making new habits. To accomplish this, focus your attention on areas that make you feel good, thus allowing you to think positively.
Do things that will make you feel better about yourself. Start with something that captures your interest and is easy to do. It can be as simple as owning a pet, going to the beach, talking to a friend, and so on. New habits enable you to release your old train of thought, making room for new things to keep your mind busy and active.
5. Surround Yourself With Positive People
If you want to think more positively, it’s best to have the company of positive thinking people. People naturally want to be with people with whom they can relate and have the same mindset. If you’re surrounded by people who have an optimistic approach to everything and who appear chill and cheerful, you will most likely be able to adopt the same attitude too.
On the flip side, you will be stuck as a negative thinker if you choose to hang out with toxic people—individuals who constantly complain about everything in their lives. This crowd is like quicksand, so when you start spending time with them, they’ll pull you down so fast that your thoughts will turn negative immediately.
6. Focus On Your Strengths
Probably the majority of comments you remember that people said about you were negative. People typically ignore the positive aspects of their lives because they are too focused on the negatives—not to mention that they are frequently surrounded by them. Your positive qualities and successes are given less time and attention than your faults.
Therefore, it’s essential to change your perspective. You can avoid negative thinking if you do this. Your mentality will be more likely to shift towards positive things in life the more you concentrate on them. As an exercise, try writing down some things you like about yourself. You can use these positive statements whenever you feel like you’re not good enough.
7. Deal With Criticisms Positively
Although it’s okay to defend yourself in some situations, everyone can receive criticism better, mainly when it’s delivered properly. If someone is critical of you, you can be prone to negative thinking.
You become fixated only on the negative things they said. People make up reasons for why they don’t feel they’re good enough. Learn how to cope with criticism without losing your cool.
People should not continually be subjected to negative thinking. Everybody should be happy with their lives. To overcome negative thinking, it’s crucial to understand and find its roots. Once you do, following the tips above will help you end these negative thoughts and move forward!