“Thought is one of the most powerful function of the human being. It can change one’s personality and one’s whole life,” according to HSY founder Nanette Hucknall. So it’s no surprise that negative thought patterns can have detrimental impact on our lives.
Negative thoughts affect everyone from time to time. The cycle of negativity can feed on itself and amplify the negative feelings we experiences. Reacting to drama, expecting the worst, and making negative assumptions and judgments, results in overall negative feelings about others and ourselves Negative thoughts prevent us from experiencing joy and happiness in our lives.
When this happens, it’s important to step back, reflect, and embrace the peacefulness and joy of the present moment.
Here are 5 ways to stop negative thought patterns and to live a happier, more fulfilled life.
- Make a choice not to listen to your own negative thoughts. You’re probably thinking, ‘Easier said than done, right?’ It certainly does take practice, and here’s how you can teach yourself to control your own mind. If you’re starting to have a negative thought, pause and try to notice it. Step back, and ask your Higher Self: Where is this thought coming from and why am I feeling this way? Self-awareness is the key to any success, and by identifying the source of your negative thought; you then have a choice to consciously change it to a positive one.
- Seek out positive qualities in other people. If you find yourself being overly critical of a person you may be experiencing a negative karmic relationship. We all have them — sometimes they’re with a friend, coworker, family member, and even strangers. You can choose to break negative karmic relationships and feel better yourself, by stopping negative thoughts and instead seeking out positive qualities in that person. All of us have negative and positive attributes – choose to focus on positive ones. For instance, if you have a bad relationship with your boss, instead of being angry and taking personal offense, try to focus on the positive aspects to your working relationship. Here are some common examples to try; though she/he can be unfriendly – she is certainly pragmatic in her decisions and management; though she can be unavailable – she is certainly prompt in responding to my emails.
- Find a healthy balance in daily tasks. Our daily lives consist of a spectrum of duties that we enjoy, don’t mind, or dislike. And, unfortunately, sometimes there is a disruption in the balance of good and bad when your day is filled to the brim with tasks you dislike or resent. When that happens, and when time allows, it’s important in balancing your day or week with something that give you pleasure. Reward yourself after a hectic and unpleasant day by doing something that gives you joy, dinner with a friend or a movie for example. In addition, it’s beneficial to also find the joy in unpleasant routines that have to be done – and we all have these. For instance, if you hate your long, traffic-ridden commute to work; try to find the joy in the journey with something relaxing. For example; though the commute is long, I am able to listen to my favorite NPR program, podcast, or my favorite book on tape; though I am in traffic standstill, I have a chance to communicate with my HS.
- Meditate and be mindful. Mindfulness practices like meditation and working with your Higher Self will help you achieve inner peace, which with some practice begins to eliminate negative thought patterns. We all experience this inner peace occasionally, usually while doing our favorite things: spending time with our children, eating a delicious meal, laughing with friends. When we experience inner peace, negative thought patterns melt away. Ready to meditate? Link with your Higher Self by trying this simple yet effective meditation exercise.
- Practice gratitude. Gratitude is an affirmation of goodness in one’s life and acknowledging its existence allows for feelings of joy and peace to come into your being. According to research, people who regularly practice gratitude by noticing and reflecting upon the things they’re thankful for, experience more positive emotions and thought patterns, as well as having stronger immune systems. Every daily task usually has something fun and joy from which you can learn and be appreciative for. Start today: What are you thankful for in your life?
Did you find these tips helpful? What has worked for you in eliminating negative thought patterns? Comment below!