Are you addicted to negative thoughts? Just like an addict, you might deny you have a problem. But think back to your last negative thought binge. Yeah, wasn’t so long ago, right? You better believe you (and I) are just like the rest of ‘em. You try to stop but you can’t. You even have your drug of choice, that single negative thought that beckons louder than any other.
For me, it’s my first thought of the day. When my alarm goes off at 5:30am and it’s still dark out, I immediately resent my life for having me on a schedule such that I need to wake up before dawn to fit in a morning workout. I launch into negative thoughts about work and all the “have-tos” in my life. I am resentful I don’t have more control over my time. And I feel put-upon. I know, at one time or another, I have said, “I hate my life.” These are my first thoughts of the day. This is not good. Eventually I climb out of this negative thought bender, but wouldn’t it be great if these thoughts never existed to begin with?
What would it take for “all negative thoughts to stop right now?” We can declare our addictive negative thoughts illegal. We simply are not allowed to think them. We can summon up will power and put our minds on something else.
As it pertains to my resentment of the hour that I wake up, I could start reminding myself the minute I wake up that “I love mornings.” I do. It’s not a lie. It’s just a preemptive positive thought. As I am getting myself to the gym, I could give thanks for the bus driver. The crisp autumn morning. I could give a stranger a smile. I could revel in the emptiness of the usually-busy city streets.
How you could stop all negative thoughts right now? How could you stop just one?
Choose a negative thought on which you tend to cycle. Write it down. Write down all the tangential negative thoughts that come along with it. Go to town. Send yourself on your last negative ranting, venting binge.
These thoughts are now illegal.
Think about how you could think differently. Write down a series of positive thoughts that will replace the negative ones. Keep these on hand as a reminder until the positive thoughts become more natural. Intending a positive replacement for a negative thought is the first step. Thinking leads to feeling, feeling leads to knowing, and before long, you’re living it.