You’ve heard that saying—it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you respond to it?
This is literally true.
Do you ever find yourself feeling super stressed, and you just KNOW that anything that can go wrong will? Do small comments get to you and make you wonder when you will ever do anything right? And during these times, don’t you just know that it is useless to try something else to move beyond this? You just feel stuck!!
Pretty much everyone feels like this at one time or another. But did you know you may be causing your own negativity—not those around you?
Human beings can literally create our own stress through negative thinking.
And, when you are in a pattern like this, how good do you think your business decisions are? Or how you are relating to others?
There are lots of ways that psychologists classify patterns of negative thinking. They have interesting labels for different ways that we talk ourselves down. For example:
- Filtering—Ignoring the good and focusing only on the bad things that happen.
- Catastrophizing—Assuming that anything that happens will be the worst thing ever.
- Personalizing—Taking everything that happens personally.
- Black/White Thinking—Everything is either great or terrible. There is nothing in between.
- Mind reading—Assuming that we know what other people are thinking.
The list could go on and on.
The thing to know is that these are mind games—tricks our mind and our moods can play on us. Unfortunately, once getting into a cycle of thinking negatively, it is easy to get stuck there. It is tricky to recognize when you are there, because everything seems so true.
It takes energy and focus to dig yourself out and get on a more positive (or realistic) path. But it can be done, and needs to happen for your own health and the health of the your business.
Here are some things you can do:
- Make an actual pencil to paper list of things that have gone right, of good decisions you have made, of people who have respected and liked you. Ask others for ideas for this list since it may be difficult for you to come up with these instances in the funk you are in. Review this list several times a day.
- When you find yourself talking negatively to yourself or someone else, ask the question “what could go right here in this situation?”
- When you are caught in black and white thinking, brainstorm 15 different outcomes beyond the black one or the white one.
- Get out into nature and consciously appreciate what you see.
- Make a list of 10 things you are grateful for.
- Make a list of things you would rather hear yourself say instead. Read it outloud several times a day.
- When you find yourself repeatedly caught in a negative thinking cycle, say “STOP” outloud. Then say positive affirmations outloud.
You truly can break yourself out of these negative thinking patterns. And you must. Your health depends on it, and your business depends on it. When you are a black cloud of negative energy you will attract that to you. Turn yourself around to be full of positive energy, and it will flow your way.