Your thoughts are on the front line when it comes to your life. They are the foundation for everything. At the most fundamental level, a positive mind is the springboard for action, inspiration, and a life that is full of joy, love, and peace. A positive mind allows you to live fully in the present moment.
Bad thoughts are bound to arise from time to time, they just have to be dealt with in a healthy and appropriate way. Most of them arise from worries about events that have already been and gone, or worries about the immediate future, or even from worries about life decades down the line.
Whatever the source of your bad thoughts, you should know that you are not your thoughts. Your thoughts do not even really belong to you. You are simply an observer. When you experience a bad thought, you should imagine it as a cloud above your head that is drifting away from you.
If you can exercise a certain amount of detachment, a negative thought can quickly be acknowledged, dealt with, and your mind can return to the present moment. Most of the time, you will come to realize that the thought only represented a fear, or that the perceived problem was self-created by the thought itself.
When bad thoughts arise too often, they become like a plague on your mind. They can create tension in your relationships, in your job, and within your own being, if they are not properly dealt with. You can take back control, starting right now.
Below, are a few ways you can start to take back control of your life:
1. Honest Communication
Thoughts are not supposed to be got rid of, even if they are negative. It is important that you embrace all of your thoughts and emotions in a healthy and natural way. This requires proper communication with others. Sometimes you just have to get it all off your chest!
There is never a need to blow your lid off. Simmer down and communicate well, with an open and honest approach. Try to question the root of your negative thoughts, and always consider whether your own perceptions are at least a little at fault.
2. Flip The Thought
Over time, your brain learns how to behave, and thoughts and feelings become like an inbuilt reaction. On a neurological level, this is exactly what is happening. When you think negatively about something, be it yourself, another person, or a certain situation, you reinforce a certain pathway in your brain.
It is possible, with effort and inspiration, to consciously rewire your brain, and lead your mind gently away from bad thoughts. A clever technique for this is to “flip your thought.” It is futile, and unhealthy, to try to pretend that a bad thought never occurred. Instead you should aim to recognize it, and then lead yourself down a more positive trail of thought soon after.
For example, if you have a bad thought about another person, you can make yourself think of something nice about them. Ask yourself, “what do I like about this person?” You will have to force it at first, but your positivity will eventually solidify. You can do this for any negative thought.
“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.” – Helen Keller
3. Using Affirmations And Positive Language
The barriers of the conscious mind, which contain all of your learnt negativity, can be bypassed using affirmations, which breach the subconscious and deliver inspiring and positive messages.
You can create and repeat positive messages to yourself. Feel free to craft your own to suit your exact situation. It may seem daft if you have never tried it before, but it works, of that you can be sure. Repeat it to yourself in the morning, and last thing at night, until you feel it settle in and replace your negative thoughts.
Staying In the Moment: The Perpetual Loop Of Positivity
A negative mind can prevent you from living in the present. If you attach yourself to your bad thoughts, then you will soon drift off into a daydream of negativity. The trick is to acknowledge the thought, and let it drift on by. In order that bad thought does not consume you, it can be dealt with in a healthy way using the techniques mentioned: honest communication, control over your trail of thought, and affirmations.
When you have a certain amount of control over your mind, you will have a much easier time living in the present. When you are living in the present your life will likely feel much happier, fuller, and more peaceful, and so the positive loop perpetuates.
“Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most.” – Jack Kornfield
How to Stay In The Present
There are several ways in which you can learn to become fully present. Ancient techniques such as meditation have been gaining continuous scientific validation, and today people all across the world are applying it, and seeing miraculous benefits. With meditation, you can gain further control of your mind, and live a more focused, positive life.
Meditation is a practice, and like any practice, you must put in the time and energy to learn how to do it, and to truly feel the results. You would not play the piano and instantly expect to learn Mozart, so be patient with yourself, and know that you will see positive change in time.
Anyone can partake in meditation, regardless of your faith, or your life situation. All it requires is your own focus. You can adapt at as you please, and with experience you will no longer need it as a template.
Meditation is a great tool for freeing yourself from negative thought, by staying in the present moment. Regular meditation tends to lead to improvements in all areas of life, including your mind and your happiness.
By dealing with your negative thoughts, and staying present in the moment, you can take control of your mind.