What did you think when you read the title of this post?
Shouldn’t stop negative thinking – surely she’s wrong? -negative thoughts are not a good idea at all: they make people unhappy, they sabotage self-confidence, they create depression and anxiety. So surely, we should try to stop our negative thoughts from dictating our lives?
The problem is that when we try to stop having negative thoughts we give those negative thoughts more power because we are trying to resist them.
As the founder of psychoanalysis Carl Jung said
“What you resist, persists”
By this he meant that the more we try to push something away, the more important it seems in our lives, the more power it holds over us, the more difficult it is to let it go.
It’s the same with unwanted thoughts
Letting go of negative thinking is something that I help many of my clients achieve, but I always remind them not to try to force those thoughts away – that’s never the answer.
Negative thoughts will pop into your mind without any conscious choice on your part. They just happen.
Instead of simply trying to stop thinking negative thoughts, just notice when they pop into your mind, and then follow them up with something more loving, such as:
“There’s my grumpy thoughts popping up again, never mind”
and then add a much more positive thought such as
“I’m doing well, I’m working on changing this habit now”
Following this process will mean you have a much better chance of letting go of the habit of negative thoughts. The less attention and meaning you give to them, the less power they will hold over you.
In time the habit of negative thinking will diminish and instead you will have formed a habit of self-loving positive thoughts.
So, don’t ever try to resist your negative thoughts: allow them, smile at them, and follow them up with love!
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