The way of relating to negative thoughts influences how we perceive and interpret what happens around us . In turn, it influences how we behave in certain situations. For example, if I continually think that the presentation of a job is going to go wrong, possibly that insecurity that I generate causes me not to go as well as I expected.
Negative thoughts sabotage the best of ourselves and, if we don’t know how to control them, they end up creating a situation of insecurity, anxiety and anger that, in turn, generate new automatic negative thoughts . A vicious circle that is not easy to get out of, in which negative thoughts are repeated over and over again.
In a way, they become a snowball that is rolling more and more , getting bigger and losing control in its path. They become ruminant, draining our energy. How can we stop them?
Relate to negative thoughts, a form of communication
Communication with us or, put in other words, the internal language (commonly referred to as thinking) it is not more than a conversation that we engage with our being , with ourselves . And that conversation we have influences our way of relating to the world around us, at the same time it talks, and a lot, about how we treat ourselves.
Therefore, the language we have with ourselves (thoughts) is a form of communication , just as we start a conversation with someone.
In the internal language there is a wide range of thoughts, both positive and negative. Our mind stops more in those who give more value and those who spend more time. Thus, those of the negative type may be gaining more and more ground, such as passengers who settle in our mind and do not let other thoughts flow.
Let us keep in mind that mistreating oneself has the same effect as if a close person mistreated us . For example, if a family member continually tells us that we are clumsy, useless and that we don’t know how to do anything right … how would you feel?
It should be noted that the feeling of discomfort that causes a person to dedicate negative comments to you can be equivalent to when those comments are told to you. They thus become ruminant and obsessive thoughts that take away energy .
How to manage negative thoughts?
The results showed that age does not matter , since such thoughts generate anguish and are often the trigger for many diseases , both for young people and for the elderly.
The discomfort and frustration generated by the negative emotions that produce this pattern of thoughts produce that, if they lengthen much in time, we end up leaving the door open to depression and anxiety .
Therefore, it is essential to learn to manage them. Next, we name certain ways to learn to combat negative thoughts.
Identify your negative thoughts
Sometimes, we may not be aware that the ideas we have in our head and everything that conditions us. Sometimes, we even think they are true and we believe them, when the reality is very different.
Thus, to make a more suitable identification, you can try to take note of your most recurring negative thoughts. What do you say, how do you tell it and in what situations? Writing them can help you later analyze them better.
Later, he reflects on the course of these thoughts regarding their origin, recurrence and consequences as an external observer would do . If a friend told you he has those negative thoughts, what would you say? Using another reference point can help us see things from another point of view.
Likewise, as it is important to identify negative thoughts, it is also important to accept them. Accept that such thoughts are necessary in certain circumstances . Do not forget that at certain times being continuously trying to block them, avoid them and eliminate them causes them to feed back.
Reformulate your thoughts
After identifying them, you can try to turn those thoughts to start gradually introducing more realistic and positive thoughts . To do this, ask yourself:
- What would be other options for interpreting these thoughts?
- Could there be other more real, logical and positive interpretations? It may help you to rephrase them to make a list.
After questioning each negative thought, it is time to introduce other alternative thoughts, equally applicable to the situation, but more positive, realistic and adaptive. The goal is not to eliminate negative thoughts, but to give them another approach and learn to question them so that they are losing ground in our mind.