Learning how to change negative thinking to a more positive outlook isn't actually hard. It's the voice of negativity itself - ironically - telling us how difficult, nay impossible, our bid for the positive is likely to be.
But what's the truth of the matter? We aren't meant to live with one foot on the gas and the other on the breaks. Eliminating negativity is natural - although a critical inner voice will most certainly disagree.
"He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts."
Imagine yourself a ship adrift at sea - a sea of negativity surrounding you from all directions. No matter which direction you look, you can't see the shore. You're lost, with no landmarks to refer to. Nothing you see to give you hope.
Yet, your ship is afloat. What keeps it that way? What keeps it from sinking?
It's the empty hull of the ship that gives it its buoyancy.
Negativity must be constantly released - thrown overboard - to protect the integrity, the life-affirming emptiness of the hull.
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Negative self-talk, our critical inner voice - negativity in all its various manifestations - isn't going to disappear from our lives anytime soon. Negativity, you see, is an evolutionary imperative.
Being suspicious, doubting or imagining 'worst case scenarios' all have survival value. These have helped us, as a species, to make it this far.
Yet, once basic survival is taken care of - what then? Our inner critical voice and negative self-talk continues trying to help us survive. Yet the effects often become detrimental instead. Obsessing about worst-case-scenarios and how everything can go so terribly wrong (otherwise known as catastrophizing) can put a real damper on your quality of life.
When it comes to personal fulfillment and happiness unchecked negativity can be a real hindrance - an uncalled for drag.
The survival value of negativity is real - your critical inner voice can help you survive. However, excusing or justifying negativity as 'being realistic' isn't the same thing - not at all.
The serious problem with being 'realistic' - is that we may just being negative instead. How do we know which is which? How can we tell the difference?
How good are you at discerning 'reality'? How much of what you see is your own projections and how much of it is actual - objective? We need to be careful with our judgments of reality. We need to be careful that it isn't actually ourselves who are being (unfairly and unwittingly) judged.
'This is just how it is. It's just the way things are.'
Are you sure?
Stop ... just long enough to let that question sink-in. You might find you need to throw negativity overboard for a while. Don't worry ... you can always go back fishing for it when you're done.
"Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts."
Self-delusional positive thinking is the polar opposite of catastrophizing and is often called upon to 'balance out' the extreme negativity that's been going on.
However, self-delusional positive thinking isn't as positive as it may superficially seem, since it's another extreme. Instead of throwing negativity overboard - we take on more passengers - extremely positive ones this time. We hope their positive self-talk and rosy dispositions will drowned out the negative voices on board.
What we end up with is a reactive back and forth - a tug-of-war - a struggle. Which voice is the real one? Who do I believe? At this point it may be hard to tell.
Struggling with how to change negative thinking can sometimes feel like you're trying to do something against all odds. The negativity inside you immediately and viciously reacts - as if fighting for its life. You try to counter by bringing positive thinking to the rescue.
And you get drawn into a reactive cycle leaving you with little room to be proactive about any of it.
Instead of trying to fight fire with fire, by pitting the positive against the negative, try chucking the negative overboard for a while and see what happens. Don't allow it a place in your mind - period. Keep the hull of the ship empty - yet with its capacities full.
That's where your buoyancy will come from. That's when clarity will emerge. These both keep you afloat and will carry you to shore when the time is right.
If you've been wondering how to change negative thinking - it isn't hard. Eliminating negativity is natural when you can be proactive vs. reactive about it. If the reactive negative patterns you're dealing with are deeply rooted in your subconscious mind, using instant hypnosis downloads can really help.
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