Can positive thoughts help us live better and achieve our goals? Yes of course.
“Never become a pessimist; a pessimist is right more often than an optimist, but an optimist has more fun, and neither can stop the flow of events. “
Robert Anson Heinlein.
I hate positive thinking.
Admit it, you didn’t expect this incipit in an article dedicated to positive thoughts and positive thinking.
The point is that positive thinking is a philosophy of life, developed in the early 1900s, which invites its followers to change their lives thanks to positive thoughts and affirmations to be repeated daily.
It’s a pity that every single study that has been conducted on this school of thought has come to the same conclusion: positive thinking is’ shit!
If limiting yourself to positive thinking and repeating like a singsong of affirmations does not serve a fried chip, this certainly does not mean that we must have a negative attitude or destructive thoughts to embark on our path of personal growth!
To achieve our goals we have to take action.
Thinking positive can stimulate action. On the contrary, a negative attitude and destructive thoughts can block us.
That’s why in this article I will tell you about the 3 mental “vampires” who are sucking your energy and your positivity and how to get rid of them to keep your thoughts positive.
But first a simple question …
Each of us has his “favorite” mental torture.
These recurring mental patterns often dominate our days and lead us to live in a prolonged state of suffering.
In these periods there is no willpower or productivity strategy that holds.
So if we want to return to work on our goals with positivity and serenity we must first get rid of these mental “worms”.
Yes, but how ?!
Going to the root of the many mental tortures that we self-inflict we discover something very interesting: to make us suffer are 3 dominant negative thoughts, 3 real … mental “vampires”.
Recognizing them, knowing them and neutralizing them is what we will do together in the next few minutes:
1. The thought of deprivation
The thought of deprivation is the first mental vampire that we have to get rid of if we want to go back to positive thinking.
In fact, if we focus our attention on what we have lost or could lose, it will be inevitable for us to suffer.
Think for example of love:
If you do nothing but think of a love now lost, you risk being never ready to live a new relationship.
If you do nothing but think that you can lose your love, you risk living in a perennial state of jealousy that could lead to the end of your current relationship.
Regarding the past or the future, the thought of deprivation is a sneaky bastard. But he is not alone …
2. The thought of Subtraction
The second mental “vampire” that at this moment could make you suffer or could block you, is surely the thought of Subtraction.
Social envy and anxiety for our future are the two most common by-products of the thought of Subtraction and unfortunately the spread of social networks and fake news does nothing but feed this cerebral vampire.
3. The thought of negation
Finally, we have the thought of negation.
If we are intimately convinced that we can never reach a certain goal, or live a certain experience, this thought can literally wear us out.
If, for example, a disease, a disability or a simple physical defect have convinced you that you cannot achieve certain goals, inevitably this will lead you to suffer.
I bet that reading these last few lines a light bulb went on in your head and I also bet that among the 3 mental vampires there is one who is currently sucking you away more serenity and positivity than the others.
That domination of your thoughts is privation, subtraction or denial, it doesn’t matter. If you don’t get rid of these recurring mental patterns, you will continue to suffer.
Let’s see in the last part of the article how to get back to positive thoughts.
How to get back to having positive thoughts: first point, remember that …
The thought, with which we often identify ourselves (and which generates suffering in us), is actually an automatic product of our brain activity.
Like most of our physiological activities, thinking has developed during our evolution for a specific function: that is, helping us to solve problems (problem-solving) in order to be able to adapt better to the surrounding environment.
Of course, over the millennia cognitive activity has become increasingly complex, but I don’t want to turn the article into a treatise on neuroscience.
The message that I would like to convey to you is that the little voice that you feel buzzing in your head … in reality it is not You, or rather, it is your physiological function, as digestion can be.
Here, learning NOT to identify with our thoughts is the first fundamental step to free ourselves from the negative ones.
An excellent practical tool to become aware of the real nature of our thinking is meditative practice.
But let’s now see the second step to return to having positive thoughts.
Change your mind station
If our thoughts are an automatic product of our brain activity, we could assimilate them to … radio transmissions.
We are not the ones to decide the schedule of a radio broadcast, but we can always choose to … change the station!
The same goes for our thoughts.
The thoughts of Privation, Subtraction and Denial have the bad habit of knocking on our brain without warning and flooding it for whole hours.
Now that you know your enemies and their nature, it will be much easier for you to spot them in the bud and shift your focus to different thoughts.
However, “changing stations” initially will require an effort of will.
However, there is an even more powerful “signal”, that is, a typology of positive thoughts capable of neutralizing the thoughts of Deprivation, Subtraction and Negation and of rapidly returning us to a state free of suffering …
The power of gratitude thoughts
Positive thinking, metaphors on radio signals, gratitude … OMMIODIO Andrea was owned by a guru Niu Eig!
Ok, I admit it, if this should be your first article read on EfficaceMente, I would be a little worried …
For years, however, I have been pursuing a very concrete philosophy of personal growth based on the most recent studies of neuroscience, psychology, behavioral sciences, etc. and this article is no exception.
Already in the past I told you about the power of gratitude, providing you with all the scientific references necessary to deepen this fascinating topic.
For the purposes of this article, all we need to know is that the thoughts of gratitude have the same effect on the negative ones as the mosquito on the mosquito.
In fact, we cannot be grateful and … envious, frustrated, stressed, sad, unsatisfied, etc. at the same time.
It is simply impossible.
Well, now that we have come to an end here, it is time to recap and see together a practical exercise to get rid of the 3 mental vampires and return to positive thinking.
Let’s recap: how to have positive thoughts and get rid of negative ones
The idea that just think positive to make our dreams come true is one of those urban legends that die hard in the world of personal growth.
“Actions beat views every single day of the week.”
This does not mean that we have to think negatively! Negative thoughts are in fact often the basis of our suffering. Specifically, there are 3 mental vampires that suck our energies:
– The thought of deprivation.
– The thought of subtraction.
– The thought of negation.
To neutralize these negative mental patterns we must first become aware of the fact that thought is nothing more than a “physiological” product of our brain activity. The moment we stop identifying with it, we are free.
If we are NOT our thoughts, this means that we can view this cognitive activity as radio transmissions. If we don’t like the “songs” we’re listening to, it’s up to us to change the station.
The most effective way to change stations and tune in to positive thoughts is to leverage the power of gratitude.
We had arrived here.
Practical exercise that will help you harness the power of gratitude.
Take a notebook or open a new text-file.
Begin to bring to mind and list the best moments of your life, the ones you are most grateful for. They can be important and significant moments, but also everyday moments like a walk in the middle of nature. What matters is that there were times when you felt deeply grateful to be in the world.
Among these moments, choose the one you have the most vivid memory of.
Now try to bring to mind every single detail of that episode: the wind on your skin, the surrounding sounds, the temperature. Try to relive that moment in all its nuances.
Do you remember why you felt so grateful at the time? But above all, do you remember that apparently unjustified feeling of joy? Try to bring it back to the surface, hold on to that sensation, savor it as you would taste a good dessert.
How was it? Not bad, right?
What if I did this simple exercise every time you realize that your mind is tuning in to Radio PdM (Pensieri di Merda)? How much would your life improve?
Well, you just have to try.