The way we process the world around us and its events is highly complex. This phenomenon of assimilation of reality ultimately plays a huge role in our state of happiness or lack thereof. Even when we are going through a difficult time in life, if we can manage our emotions and stop negative thoughts from spiraling out of control, we will be able to cope with the situation. And, most importantly, we will overcome it without deep emotional wounds and without having to deal with serious mental health problems. Every person is unique, and every situation has different nuances. The same formula won’t work cut off the negative thinking flow for everyone. But there are a few techniques you should try to improve your emotional state. Here are seven tips that will help you to control negative thoughts!
1. Give yourself proper time to process your emotions
When we are dealing with a difficult situation, we usually tend to immediately think about everything that happened, what got us there, and how we are going to get over it. This could lead us to a very dark place where negative, almost depressing thoughts constantly surround us. That’s why it is important to take some time to process emotions without any form of judgment. Just listen to your feelings, acknowledge them, and don’t over-analyze everything. This tip also applies to positive emotional states. Whether you are deeply in love, proud of yourself, or just happy, you should allow yourself to enjoy it fully. Without thinking about the impact that the situations that led you to that emotional state will have on your life. This line of reasoning can only undermine your state of happiness. Don’t sabotage yourself.
2. Be grateful for everything you have
When we are overwhelmed by negative thoughts, we often forget all that we have and all that we have conquered throughout our lives. Cultivating gratitude might be a great way to make you a better person and to be happy with yourself. One of the benefits of gratitude is precisely the fact that it can reduce a series of toxic emotions like envy or resentment, for example. Such feelings can quickly deteriorate your well-being and mental health. Be thankful for all the good things and the good people you have in your life. Especially during the rough times.
3. Talk to someone about what you are going through
Talking to someone about your feelings can be really therapeutic and relieve part of the burden that rests upon your shoulders. It might also be interesting to have some insight from someone that has a completely different perspective. If you don’t want to open up and discuss your feelings with someone you know, please seek professional help. You don’t have to suffer from severe anxiety or depression to see a therapist. If you’re having trouble controlling your thoughts, these experts are trained to help you. Don’t be ashamed or afraid to resort to this option.
4. Practice physical exercise and mindfulness meditation
These practices can help you clear your mind in different ways and improve both your physical and mental health. According to several studies, meditation can help people cope with negative emotions and handle stress. But how does it happen? During meditation, you are trying to detach yourself from the reality around you, including your thoughts and emotions, one breath at the time. This can make you feel like you are in control of your feelings again by the end of the session. As far as physical exercise is concerned, we all know its benefits. But did you know that it can be as effective as antidepressant medications to treat mild to moderate depression? That’s true. And the best part is that you won’t have to deal with the awful side effects of antidepressants. Being physically active is fundamental to be happy, so don’t underestimate its importance!
5. Write your struggles in a diary
Putting down your negative thoughts into words can be cathartic and help you better understand your emotions. Start a journal and try to describe important life events, how they made you feel, and your thought process throughout the entire thing. The following day, when you reread what you wrote, you might be able to look at it all differently and replace that negativity with a more positive way of thinking. Don’t think that keeping a diary is a teenage thing. It is actually a very effective technique recommended by mental health experts, which is part of many cognitive behavioral therapy plans. Give it a try! It might do wonders for you.
6. Stop thinking about what other people think
The negative thoughts that overwhelm us are often related to our concerns for other people’s opinions. If that is what is happening to you, relax. Most likely, other people don’t care so much about what’s going on in your life. They have their problems, and they don’t need to waste precious energy, judging you and your life choices. Don’t think you have to achieve certain goals or buy certain things to meet the expectations that others may have of you. If you assimilate this mindset, you will set yourself free from that absurd pressure, and you can finally start focusing on your goals and happiness.
7. Look at the bright side of things
Some situations are horrible, and there is simply no way of looking at them from a positive perspective. However, many of the circumstances that lead us to get stuck in a loop of negative thoughts can be dealt with in a completely different manner. Look at the bright side of things. If you can’t, force yourself to do it. What did you learn from that situation? How will you make things differently in the future? These are the kind of questions that will simultaneously help you to be more positive and make you grow as a person.