Did you know that we have over 60.000 thoughts every single day?
From these thoughts around 95% are repetitive and the same thoughts as we had yesterday.
And around 80% are negative thoughts.
We all have negative thoughts and we are all prone to being stuck in negative thought patterns. They can seem so normal to us that they go completely unconscious. Having negative thoughts is part of the human experience. Our minds are wired to constantly be on the lookout for problems and dangers, and thanks to this it kept us safe back in the days.
When the mind constantly points out all the things that are going wrong and all the problems, it can be difficult at times to notice the things that actually go right in life, and so it's easy to get stuck in an emotional loop of feeling frustrated, anxious, angry, and even depressed. We can’t always control the thoughts that pop into our minds, but we can learn how to stop them from making us feel all these negative emotions and learn to just see them for what they are: just thoughts.
Are your negative thoughts controlling your life?
The problem is not the negative thoughts themselves - the problem comes when we believe our thoughts to be true. The thing is you are not your thoughts. Negative thoughts can get the best of you sometimes and affect the quality of your life.
The same thought leads to the same choice, same behaviour, same experience and produces the same emotions in your body.
So it's about time we start changing our thoughts, don't you think?
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How to break negative thought patterns?
Oftentimes people try to get rid of their negative thoughts by suppressing them, escaping them or distracting themselves with e.g. watching TV or scrolling through Instagram. These strategies all work in the short-term, but what you resist persists. Suppressing and escaping the negative thoughts will only make it worse in the long run. There is a way to break free from these negative thought loops.
I went from being self-destructive, depressed, having a really negative (pessimistic) mindset to finding inner peace, freedom and the joy of living. Now evicting negative thought patterns is something I constantly help my clients with and so I created these simple 5 steps for changing any negative thought into a more positive one and eventually evict the negative thoughts for good. My clients have seen fantastic results from the 5-step-formula.
Recognize the negative thought
The first step is to become conscious of the negative thought. Just notice the thought pop up and let it be without attaching any meaning or emotions onto it. See the thought for what it is: just a thought.
Name the thought
Give the thought a name or a label, mentally. Let’s not be harsh on our minds, so name it in a kind and loving tone, rather than aggressive. e.g. if you have thoughts like who am I to be doing this, I don’t have the experience, I’m not like them, mentally name it as e.g. it’s the who do you think you are thought pattern again!
Stop the thought
Don’t entertain the thought any further. Just stop it right there! An effective way to stop the thought is to snap your fingers in order to interrupt the thought pattern. Observe the thought and be the investigator of your thought here. Ask yourself:
Is this thought helpful in any way?
Is this thought the actual truth?
Investigate the thought
Be the detective here and ask yourself: What is something I could start thinking instead that would feel slightly better? What new thought can I focus on instead? What is my truth?
Reframe the thought into a new, more positive thought:
I am choosing to believe that / think that ___