If you knew how powerful your thoughts were you would never think a negative thought again. Earl Nightingale said, “We become what we think about,” and writer Mark Twain said “Life consists mainly of the storm of thoughts that is forever flowing through one's head.” Our life is a reflection of our thoughts. The National Science Foundation published an article on research conducted around human thoughts per day. They found that humans think an average of 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. The percentage of the thoughts that are negative is 80% and 95% of the thoughts were a repeat from the prior day.
Thoughts are powerful and thinking negatively may be hard to control if you been conducting in this habit for so long, though this is true, it better to work on removing this habit instead of accepting it. When we think we are essentially creating our reality. This is why most people find themselves in the same situations. The cycle of not completing their new years resolutions, dating the same type of people, working for the same job, and having the same problems show up in their lives daily. Our life often at times mimics the lives of our relatives which is why some may call it a generational curse.
The truth is though our behavior were learned from an outside source we have the power within us to change and make our lives better. Often, we are unaware of our thoughts and behaviors and this is what causes us to continue to stress about our lives not changing.
There are so many things that we as humans are negative about. We complain, compare, and are critical of our relationships, family members, friendships, colleagues, managers, health, media, government, laws, children, teens, people who are different from us, people who celebrate different religions or holidays.
There’s negative music and television shows, the ratio of negativity trumps positivity. With so much emphasis on negativity how can people operate with a positive mindset if they are constantly faced with negativity? They say you are like the five people you spend the most time with, so if you are a positive person you may start picking up negative habits when you’re constantly surrounded around it.
I used to find myself engaging in negative conversations. Complaining about my job, complaining about my kids, and the list of complaints goes on. Sometimes as human we connect and bond over similarities and if the bond is a negative similarity the cycle of negativity repeats until one day you decide that the path is no longer for you.
That’s what happened to me. I had to distance myself from negativity and it meant friends and family that were negative. Did I love them? Yes, I just needed a break because honestly the negativity was taking a toll on me.
Did you know that negative thinking effects the whole body central nervous system? When we are thinking negative it puts the body under severe stress and this constant behavior can cause long term effects to the body.
Not only does it affect our bodies it effects our life. Our thoughts are a mirror of our life. The way our life looks now is a reflection of how we think. If you are constantly dating the wrong person and you tell yourself there are not good people to date in the world, that is all you will attract. When we think negative, we cannot not see anything outside of that perspective and when something good does happen we are too stuck in our negative thinking that we believe it’s too good to be true.
If you want to see a change in your life you have to start with changing your thoughts. The thoughts we think often are not our own thoughts. They are a combination of other people opinions, the media, past experiences, and the list goes on. The thoughts are often the same and they go through this repeated cycle every day you wake until you finally decide it’s time for you to release them. Freeing your mind from negative thinking is not always an easy task, but you must release it if you want to see a change in your life.
How do you know if you’re a negative or positive person? Being self-aware of thoughts is key. If you’re complaining, criticizing, and comparing then these are examples of negative language. This week I want you to track your thoughts and the words you say. Every time you notice a negative thought or speak negative either complaining, criticizing, and comparing, tally mark, or track in your phone, Jay Shetty talks about this exercise in his book “Think Like a Monk.”
Negativity is harmful for you and I know you may be thinking that how can you be positive when everything is crashing down on you. Maybe your situation is not going the way you want it to. Maybe someone was rude to you. Maybe you had a bad day at work. The truth is negative thinking, or complaining does not change our situations, or what people do to us, it just amplifies the emotions surrounding the situation.
Find an outlet, adopt routines to help you cope with stress, have a vent session, and let it all out, not to revisit it later. We all have times when we feel like negativity is the only solution, I encourage you to look for another way.
“Free Your Mind”
“Be mindful of negativity
Negative thoughts become obsessions
Obsessions become deep emotions
Emotions become painful
Pain becomes cancerous to the body
Free the mind from poison”
-Janet Autherine Island Mindfulness: How to Use the Transformational Power of Mindfulness to Create an Abundant Life