When the negative thoughts come – and they will; they come to all of us – it’s not enough to just not dwell on it… You’ve got to replace it with a positive thought. ~ Joel Osteen
Has someone ever told you that you were negative?
How did you react to this comment? Some of us might say, “Who me?” Others might stay quite but, the mind would be racing around guiltily looking for examples.
We all have some negative patterns.
Negative thought patterns are habits that we have accumulated over time. Some come through our families, some from teachers or mentors, some from society, some from the media and the list goes on.
A key to transforming negative patterns is to recognize them. Once you are aware of them, you have the choice to change them.
Do you recognize any of these?
1. Stealing the stage: You are in a situation where you are telling a story about one of your experiences. Then, as soon as you pause, someone in the group jumps in and begins to regale the group with their story? Annoying? Yes! Stealing the stage in this way can be seen as attention seeking. Is that what you want?
2. Saying NO more than YES: Are you one of those people who rejects others peoples plans and ideas? If you don’t outright reject them, you feel you have to add to the ideas. This is a sure way to tell someone their ideas are not good enough and that your are better. Try to go along with someone’s idea just once to see what happens. Expect to be surprised.
3.You aren’t listening: In an argument or discussion do you cling to your side of the story refusing to even listen to another point of view? This is an indication that you are not hearing what the other has to say. You are invalidating them. Take time to listen and perhaps you will find one point you can agree on and then agree to disagree.
4.Hold a grudge: Do you hold a grudge after a supposed wrong? I hear people say, “I will never forgive her/him.” For one, never is a very long time, are you sure you can do that? Second, who are you really hurting with this attitude? It is you who is hold this negative energy inside of you. You keep it burning every time you repeat the thought. Negative energy like this hurts your body through stress.
5. Should’ve: We hear this all the time, “You should’ve done this or that.” We are assuming that we know what is best for someone else. We don’t. We are each on a journey with our own experiences. These need to be honoured.
6. The blame game: The Blame Game is when we are always placing the blame for our situations on others. We love to blame the economy, government, family, boss or friends for our current situations. It is so much easier to transfer the blame to something or someone else rather than taking responsibility for our situation. We all have choices and how we use them is up to us. If you don’t like the choice you made, chose again.
7. Negative future casting: This is putting a negative prediction on another person’s future. This can come out as, “There is no way he/she is going to succeeded at that.” Are we deep down trying to sabotage their success? No one knows the future, so adding a doom and gloom to spin to it only creates fear and anxiety. Wouldn’t it be better if we cheered them on?
8.Casting judgement: Judging anyone in any way can be very hurtful and demoralizing. Even when we judging someone in our thoughts, it can be felt by the other person, because thoughts are energy. Watch your thoughts to see what words you frequently use to describe someone. Now, see if you can find another way of to describe them.
Choosing to be aware of your thought patterns and taking steps to turn them around can have a significant affect on the quality of your relationships and your life.
Go ahead make some changes and see what happens.
Author: Carolynne Melnyk
Carolynne Melnyk is a teacher, coach and mentor with over 25 years experience helping others find solutions to problems.