Negative thinking – 5 ways to influence your thoughts
Negative thinking – 5 ways to influence your thoughts
“What the head repeats, the heart wants to heal…” I don’t know where I heard this saying. But it was only recently, and when I heard it – it hit me hard.
Those looping thoughts going around and around your head all day about the same thing; those thoughts need to be healed by the heart. Yet, those thoughts influence your everything – your mood, level of motivation, and sense of self.
So let’s start by looking at ways to influence your thoughts and heal your heart.
First question, have you truly listened to yourself recently? Yes, it sounds weird…but have you ‘tuned in’ to listen to what you say every day? We have between 60,000 and 70,000 thoughts per day, and 95% of those are a repeat of yesterday. #omg So, if you really listen in, you will hear something on repeat.
And for those of you who think they don’t have an inner voice? It’s the voice telling you that you don’t have an inner voice…
Psychology Today further clarifies this concept in an article of theirs:
“…We can observe this voice at work in various areas of our lives; it tells us not to get too close in our relationships or go too far in our careers. These thoughts can be cruel and berating: Who do you think you are? You’ll never succeed. You’re not like everyone else. No one will ever care about you. These thoughts can also be deceptively calm and soothing: You’re just fine on your own. The only person you can rely on is yourself. You should reward yourself with one more piece of cake. Just have one last drink; it will make you feel better.
Whether cruel or soothing, these thoughts often hold us back from going after what we want and lead to our acting in ways that hurt us. Giving in to the voice and acting on its advice only creates more attacks. The voice that told us to have that extra piece of cake is now tearing into us for having no self-control…”
Multi-award-winning therapist Marisa Peer (who I have trained under) teaches us, “What you speak of internally creates an outer dialogue. Every thought we have forms a belief that forms an attitude, and we begin to behave in a certain way that matches that, which determines the outcome.”
More interestingly, while these negative words are harmful to us, Marisa also explains, “The mind doesn’t listen to negative words; your mind picks up the words that make a picture.”
So, it’s not just the destructive words we are saying to ourselves but also the images we create that send a strong neural pathway to our minds that signals us to act on it. #whoknew
- Look at your environment
Check-in and look around who is around you. Who is influencing you, what and who are you listening to on a daily basis?
We absorb everything around us – live in a household where people are upset, depressed and worried? No doubt you will feel the same. Do you work in a workplace where there is toxicity and negative vibes? No doubt you’ll pick up on that shit and wear some of it as your own…
If you have negative or toxic people in your life, make a conscious effort to spend less time with them and start to surround yourself with people that lift your spirits. For example, you could call a friend that makes you laugh or join a new online or offline community that helps you feel good and grow.
If you do not love your physical surroundings – perhaps do a clear-out and declutter. Maybe even sell some old stuff. Make room for new! Could you add a plant to your room to add in some colour (and extra oxygen) or get a lovely smelly candle to brighten it up?
We can easily get sucked down a rabbit hole of other people’s despair, can’t we? Instead, put on a funny comedy, a feel-good show, or an inspiring podcast. Watch out for what you are consuming online, on social media, or TV. Start to notice how much better you feel when you replace your time and energy with these simple swaps.
- Start to move daily
It would be lovely to jump up at 6 am and go for a run, wouldn’t it? For most people, this ain’t gonna work. But we all know that physical exercise and movement is good for our minds.
The American Psychological Association says:
“…Exposure to long-term stress can be toxic to multiple systems in the body, even leading to medical concerns like high blood pressure and a weakened immune system, along with mental illnesses like anxiety and depression.
It may seem counterintuitive that exercise, a form of physical stress, can help the body manage general stress levels. But the right kind of stress can actually make the body more resilient. Research shows that while exercise initially spikes the stress response in the body, people experience lower levels of stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine after bouts of physical activity…”
Why not try making a playlist on Spotify and bop away whilst doing the housework. Or take the stairs rather than the elevator. Challenge yourself to walk daily for 15 mins and see how you feel. Consistency leads to motivation, not the other way around…
Yes, this old saying is true. A problem shared is a problem halved. Talking out your problems with a professional, friend, parent or loved one will alleviate some pressure of negative thoughts.
Marisa Peer explains: “It is our innate human instinct to find connection and avoid rejection. Numerous studies in the United States have shown that solitary confinement is one of the most damaging and irreversible punishments to bestow on someone. Symptoms that are known to be caused by solitary confinement include hallucinations, panic attacks, depression, loss of memory, and mood swings.”
Having someone look at what is going on for us can help. For example, a fresh pair of eyes can do wonders with our perspective and help us see solutions to our issues. Also, others may have already gone through something similar – this connection and relating to one another is also beneficial.
- Rewire your mind
Did you know that our subconscious minds are so powerful that they create core beliefs that they believe will protect us? We tend to create 90% of these beliefs as children, but these beliefs don’t appear to be logical or make any sense as adults. This means that we continue to go over the same thoughts, behaviours, and habits that don’t get us anywhere, which can be incredibly frustrating and confusing.
However, it is not our fault!
Our subconscious mind’s job is to keep us safe, and we always return to familiar behaviour—even if it is bad for us—so these subconscious patterns will continue to run us unless we change them at the very core.
So, how do we rewire this?
As a hypnotherapist, I also use a special, unique technique of combining powerful, dynamic, and compelling language to create a stronger imprint in your mind. Just like a computer, when you have an RTT session with me, you can install new software to create the best version of yourself.
If you have tried everything and want to finally let go of these looping thoughts that don’t serve you anymore, let’s chat.