So when you wake up in the morning do you immediately take charge of your thoughts, or do you just wake up, open your eyes, see the time on the alarm clock, and then try to sleep a little longer? You have no desire to get out of bed, and your mind begins instantly to play negative thoughts. Then for the rest of the day, your mind is busy with more and more negative thinking.
‘We become what we think about’ ~ Napoleon Hill
A really important stress management method is to understand what is going on in your mind, to no longer just let thoughts wander in and out, with you remaining passive. You must now start to focus on your thoughts and become aware of how your thoughts hold you back.
One of your greatest stressors will no doubt be your excessive, negative mind chatter. This mind chatter is an endless monologue which constantly goes through your mind, made up of a stream of negative thoughts, anxieties and worries. It results in you expecting the worse, seeing dangers and threats that do not actually exist. As Mark twain said “I’ve experienced many terrible things in my life, a few of which actually happened.”
The author Earl Nightingale puts forward that 92% of our worries are uncalled for because they are about things that will never happen, and about things that have already happened, so cannot be changed, no matter how much time you waste on them.
These negative thoughts and emotions:
- Depress your mind and body
- Steal your energy
- Disempower you
- Lower your immune system putting you more at risk of ill health
- Tire you out and discourage you
- Undermine your confidence and enthusiasm
- Lower your ability to perform effectively in the important areas of your life
- The more you think about them, the more negative, angrier and unhappier you become
- Stress you out!
From the second you wake up you must mentally watch your thoughts. You are at the mercy of these thoughts! Once you become aware of them, watching out for them, you become the gatekeeper of your own mind. You will live in a constant state of awareness.
‘Our life is what our thoughts make it’ ~ Marcus Aurelius
By developing a positive mental attitude, controlling your negative emotions, you will provide yourself with the aptitude to direct your mind onto what you want and not on the things you don’t.
A simple technique to stop your negative thoughts in an instant is as follows:
An unpleasant thought occurs. Close your eyes and focus on the thought. Count to three. Yell the word “STOP!” as loud as you can. Then move straight onto a positive thought. I know this sounds too simple, or maybe a little silly. But hey, give it a try, and I’ll let you in on a secret, it works.
By reducing your negative thoughts you will improve your physical and mental health, and you will most certainly reduce your stress levels. So as you notice you are having a negative thought, shout the word STOP, even if it is inside your head and not out loud, because you may get a few strange reactions if you doing it standing inside a shopping centre.
When you notice a negative thought entering your mind, immediately remove it by thinking of something positive to replace it. Let your mind become filled with positive, uplifting thoughts and ideas.
“You are what you think.” If you think constantly about failure, you are going to fail. If you think constantly about success, you are going to succeed. The person with a positive determination will succeed and prosper. Which way would you rather live?
‘If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change’ ~ Wayne Dyer