What happens when we think negatively?

This is such a hard topic to write about, I have had this saved in my drafts for months, and I am on revision 13 already, and who knows how high that might get by time it comes to actually posting this. But to me, it’s something that needs to be said, it needs to be spoke about and it needs to be shared. This thought on negativity in our lives needs to be something we are aware off. Depression and anxiety are at an all time high, and even though this is the case, the stigma around mental health is still one that is also at an all time high.

People are afraid. People are uneducated, and people are un-aware.

People fear negativity. They push and hide the effects of negative thinking, in fear of it excelling. But the longer chronic negativity goes on, the more depression comes to fight, which is exactly what they were trying to stop happening in the first place. Depression is our bodies way of defending and depressing against the ill-effects, such as the numbing of feelings that stem from chronic negative thinking. People are too quick to push and hide without allowing themselves the opportunity to understand, learn and help stop those feelings from prolonging and worsening.

So for the purpose of this post, we are going to step aside from depression and chronic and prolonged feelings- and talk about what actually happens when we allow our minds to think negatively in a day to day basis.

To find out why negative thinking has such a contagious ability to effect our minds and our bodies, as well as our friends and family around us.

The term ‘The power of positive thinking’ gets thrown around a lot- how just by thinking positive thoughts you can build your skills, boost your health and improve your work. But what they don’t tell you is what actually happens to your body when you think Negatively. They jump straight in with “You should be doing this” not “How to stop doing that.”

But what exactly is Negative Thinking and why does it have such an impact on our lives?

Negative Thinking is the process in where you think about the worst, or bad outcomes/possibilities in situations. Where you lower your expectations about yourself, your worth, your ability and the people around you.
This NT can be seen in many different ways- you could put so much pressure on yourself that you have to get everything perfect, because anything less than perfect is a failure.
You may self-label yourself as unable to do something/go somewhere/be someone.
You could mirror other peoples attitudes, so if they are angry/upset at you, it makes you then reflect their mood.
You could jump to the worst possible scenario or expect the worst in everything because of past events.
The need for people’s approval in what you do, or if you feel like you need to work hard and do everything now, as fast as possible and disqualify the present as a moment in time could be another way in Negative Thinking.
There are also many other types of Negative Thinking, but this post is about how we can understand them, not labelling them all..

Everyone gets moments like the above. These moments could happen at any time, in any scenario and could be for a multitude of reasons, but what exactly are they doing to us, and should we learn to let them go?

Thinking negatively, regardless of how long you are thinking them can have such a huge impact on your life. These thoughts and the feelings that emit from them can have an almost immediate and destructive impact, because the moment that you allow yourself to think negatively you are already allowing it to hinder you from achieving something, allowing it to put added pressure on yourself, allowing it to second guess yourself and your worth, and ultimately you are allowing it to add negative and unwanted value into your life.

And unlike Positive Thinking, which comes with an array of benefits, negative thinking comes with zero. But just because NT doesn’t benefit your life in anyway and can be classified as useless, due to it not improving your life in any way, that doesn’t make it wrong- and so many people need to realise this. It’s not weak, or stupid, or wrong to feel negatively; it’s just in basic terms can be deemed as a waste of time, when you could be thinking about other things. Things that can make you more confident, more happy and more successful in your careers, personal life and in yourself. I 100% am a believer that we must all be able to understand the negative in our lives in order to really appreciate the positive. To be able to talk about negative thoughts in a positive way and see them as a learning step rather than something that is so bad it becomes an unmentionable. The media, especially in the last few years has had such a bad attitude towards negative thinking, telling us that its something that we shouldn’t be doing- but never explaining to us why we do think it, what its doing to us, and how to make them a little bit easier.

Thinking, both positive and negative isn’t all black and white. I’m sorry, but it isn’t and it’s something that shouldn’t be a taboo subject anymore. It’s something that should be spoken about and something our children should learn about beause it plays such a huge part in our lives.

By allowing these negative thoughts to sit in our minds, we are giving them the best chance in order to destroy something positive. Think of it as a glass. There is only so much room for positive fluid, and the more space the negative takes up, the less room there is for positive. Now this doesn’t mean that you must always have more positive in your life. Not at all. These levels are going to change daily, monthly, yearly and that is completely natural. But by being able to understand negative thoughts and the impact they can have on the body, can help us make small adjustments and mindful decisions in keeping the fluid in our glass at a level we are happy with.

These negative thoughts, that can happen at any time in our lives, may come from a multitude of factors including, but not limited to self-esteem, money worries, job or personal security, relationships, health and everything in-between. You may feel like, at whatever age you are right now, that it’s too late to be able to change the way that you think, as you have been doing so all your life. But it is never too late to learn about yourself. Self-knowledge and self-understanding take years to develop and understand but once you start too, the rewards are priceless. You will be able to start to understand the impact of these thoughts and how to start to eliminate them a little bit from your life.

Negative thinking can have both physical and mental effects on the body- from emotions such as anger, frustrations, anxiety and sadness to physical constraints such as lack of energy, tiredness, changes in diet, mood swings ETC, and these thoughts and feelings can then be reflected on those around you. Just like you can pick up on others moods, they can pick up on yours. It can stop you from being the person you want to be, living the life you want to live, and doing the things you want to be doing.

There are thousands of websites, seminars, speakers, books, the list is endless, of ways to make our lives more positive based- from drinking a cup of green tea, to going for a long walk, to stroking a cat or practising yoga. These ideals that we can get rid of those negative thoughts, just like that. But if we just took the time to start to understand where those thoughts came from and to recognise the signs our body subconsciously show, rather than just tried to find a quick fix to a positive life, then we could truly start to understand ourselves and create a life we are happy in. Both positive and negative thoughts included.

It’s such a hard topic to write about, or to even understand completely- and I’m not even sure what point this post even got across because everyone experiences life differently, and reacts to events in their lives different. But it’s something that needs to become a subject of discussion- over the dinner table, or out with friends. Talking about negativity isn’t going to make your life any more negative. In-fact it can be the complete opposite and can help create a more balanced life, we just need to take that stigma away that has been associated with it for far too long and become #balancetivity together.

amanda BOOTES
remove the stigma.









1 Comment

  1. October 20, 2016 / 5:28 pm

    Very well written Amanda.. we are our worst enemy. It is only our negative thought that holds us back..nothing else..And most of the time we fail to understand that..

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