ThinkstockPhotos-490609193We’ve all fallen prey to negative thinking at one time or another in our lives. This type of thinking drains your energy and prevents you from living in the present. The more you give into negative thoughts, the strong they become. Here are 5 tips to help you conquer your negative thinking.

Surround Yourself with Positive People

The more positivity you have in your life, the more positive your life becomes. When negative thoughts creep in, talk to a friend who can help you put things into perspective. Positive people won’t feed your negative thinking you’ll begin to look at situations differently.

Surrounding yourself with positive people is beneficial to you in several ways. Not only will they help you refrain from entertaining negative thinking, they’ll also bring physical health benefits. Leading a more positive life will decrease your stress, which may decrease your blood pressure.

Smile

This may sound like the simplest thing to do but it can often be the most difficult. When you’re in a negativity mode, smiling is likely the last thing you think of doing. But, it’s important to remember that a smile, no matter how small, can make you feel better.

In fact, it takes fewer muscles to smile than it does to frown so why not smile? If you find it difficult to smile, think of something amusing, look at yourself in the mirror and smile, or watch something that makes you laugh.

Remember that You’re not Perfect…And it’s OK!

All too often, people struggle to attain perfection, but there’s no such thing as a perfect person. Negative thinking happens to everyone from time to time so don’t be so hard on yourself. Don’t dwell on the mistakes you’ve made; learn from them and move on. It’s time that you embrace your imperfections and accept that you’re imperfectly perfect!

Make a List

When you find that your thoughts are full of negativity, write down 5 things that you’re grateful for immediately. Expressing gratitude helps you to appreciate what you already have instead of thinking about what you don’t have or what you’ve lost.

This help will help bring you back to the present and allow you to see that you have a lot to be grateful for. Don’t let negative thinking steal what you already have.

Help Someone in Need

Helping others is a great way to free your mind from negative thinking. Doing something for someone else takes the focus off of you and can lift your spirits. This can be as simple as being there for a friend or volunteering at a local homeless or animal shelter.

These tips won’t keep negative thinking at bay forever but they will help you conquer your negative thoughts as they occur. And, remember; don’t be too hard on yourself when you start thinking negatively. Recognize what’s happening and use these tips to help you restore your positive thoughts.

Live Mentally Healthy,
Cognitive Psychiatry of Chapel Hill

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