Why is it that most of us find it easier to be negative than positive? It’s true that negative energy seems to flow much easier than positive energy, but is one stronger than the other? Possibly, but I don’t think so. It’s more likely to be as a result to how we’ve been programmed, so doing some positive thinking exercises might be the answer.
It’s important to remember that our minds are programmed in our early years by people such as parents, teachers etc, who have also been programmed in this way. We’re influenced by their insecurities and negativities, they get passed from generation to generation.
Changing thought patterns is difficult and it takes time too. One of the reasons people fail at it, is that they spend some time doing exercises in positive thinking, but because changes seem to be taking a long time, they give up. This gives the perfect reason to say that this stuff doesn’t work. In other words, letting the negative win.
Starting Your Positive Thinking Exercises
Before starting you must realize there are two parts to this, doing the exercises and taking some action. Without action, there’s no point in doing the exercise because most likely, you’ll be disappointed with the results.
One of the first things you need to do is recognize your negative thoughts and try to analyze them. Why are you thinking this way, what triggered it and is it how you usually think? Asking these types of questions and probing deep into your psyche will help you to understand where they’re coming from and why.
You’ll soon start to be aware when you’re having negative thoughts and you’ll then be able to take steps to stop them. It’ll take practise, but you’ll do it. Start using positive words, really examine the words you’re using in your everyday language. When you say words out loud, they have an effect on your thoughts.
Positive Thinking Thoughts
If you have a task that you believe you’re not able to do, don’t say “I can’t do it”, but instead say, “I’ll give it a try”. You might even want to try saying, “I can” and you could surprise yourself! Stop and think about what you’re thinking and saying. That little pause to think and change, if needed, can make a big difference to the results.
When you’re thinking positive thoughts, attach positive emotions. It’s known that this will strengthen your power of thinking, helping your subconscious to get a clearer message. You should also use words in your thoughts and those said out loud, that bring out positive feelings.
Words such as excited, happy and love will add power to your positive thinking. Saying, “I’d love to give it a try” will have more impact than just, “I’ll give it a try”. Attaching emotion to words makes them very powerful so make sure you only use the positive kind.
Positive Thinking Techniques
What you’re trying to achieve here is to be optimistic in all areas of your life, reprogramming your mind. It isn’t easy when there are plenty of negatives flying around. You should acknowledge they exist and have their uses, but it’s when they hold you back you should use positive thinking techniques to counter them.
Something that has really helped me is to have a funny thought to fall back on. It’s a secret weapon against negative thoughts. A few years ago, my dad gave me a jar of moisturising gel he got on prescription from his doctor.
He had a few of them and gave me one of them in case I ever needed to use some. I didn’t want or need it, but accepted it. Unfortunately he’s now passed away, but I’ve kept that stupid jar.
Whenever I think about him giving it to me I laugh to myself and it has become my secret weapon. If a negative thought pops into my head, I replace that thought with the jar of moisturising gel episode. As a result, negative thoughts soon become positive.
You’ll probably be able to come up with your own positive thinking exercises that will specifically help you, but to get you started, here are some ideas to be going on with:
- Practice gratitude
- Read positive books
- Don’t make excuses
- Don’t be hard on yourself
- Keep a check on the words you use
- Only create realistic goals
- Let go of the past
- Acknowledge all that is good about you
- Forgive yourself
- See opportunities rather than problems
- Don’t compare yourself to others
- Continually accentuate the positive
There is no one solution and it will take continuous work, but when you learn how to focus on the positive, it will make all the difference. You’ll be able to make changes in your life, although don’t expect it to happen immediately. Keep monitoring yourself and you’ll notice the progress.
More Positive Thinking
If you can think positive and expect favourable results, you’re sending a very clear instruction to your subconscious. There are other things you can do to help towards the outcome you want. Mix with positive people. If you associate with negative people, it will certainly brush off on you, because we’re heavily influenced by our surroundings.
Be careful about taking in too much news. This might sound odd, but newspapers and TV news tend to report more negative than positive stories. This can affect your mood and give you a false impression of the world, keep it in balance. Using positive thinking exercises for anxiety can also be helpful if you cut out as much of the “bad” news that you can.
Visualize what you want, see it, feel it and it will change your mindset. Affirmations regularly repeated will also help, you can find some helpful ones on this website. There are plenty positive thinking exercises for the workplace or for groups which can help in different situations. The most important thing, to quote an old cliché, is to always see the glass as half full rather than half empty.