All unhappy people have something in common: an unhappy mind . No matter the money, recognition, fame, the company of your loved ones or the dreams you have fulfilled: thinking that you are not happy will make you unhappy.
There are minds that are unhappy due to a psychic disorder of mood or personality, a chemical imbalance in the brain. Others have simply become accustomed to having negative thoughts all the time. In these people, psychologists observe similar traits. They feel incapable of everything, they fervently believe in bad luck, they live in fear, they reject the help of others and have negative feelings towards others, as envy. In addition, selfishness and paranoia usually have their place in these profiles.
Little is known about whether these personality characteristics are genetic or learned. In any case, the way to fight them is to learn new thought patterns.
Techniques to eliminate negative thoughts
1. Understand how you feel
Most self-help books recommend positive thinking as a strategy to break down negativity: while this sounds logical and can be useful in the short term, it can hurt in the long term. psychotherapist, explains the dangers of magical self-help thinking.
We don’t stop hearing that we can do what we set out to do, and it’s not true. Phrases such as “if you want to fly, spread your wings,” or that the universe conspires in our favor, incite us to believe that we are all-powerful.
We are not almighty, but neither are we beings that nothing can. Negative thoughts matter. They do not come out of nowhere, but are based on deeply rooted goals, desires and values.
Negative thoughts have a reason for being: sweetening them with positive thoughts will not eliminate them. It is important that you relate to your feelings and understand the goals, desires and values that are being responsible for negative thoughts, although it may be a little scary. You must start taking charge of what you want and take the first step.
2. Look at your feelings
People with unhappy minds, in general, “do not allow themselves to reflect on their own mental states or recognize the emotions that arise,” explains psychiatrist and psychotherapist. Every time a negative thought appears, along with the sensations that accompany it, the typical anxiety, observing how the body feels without identifying with the mental contents and feelings is an effective strategy, according to a study by the University of Deusto, in Bilbao.
Ruminating in thoughts, trying to find a solution through obsession with a problem, is a strong feature of disorders such as depression and anxiety, the most common when it comes to mental health . Taking distance from body responses and observing thoughts implies a new relationship with them, according to the study.
You should not always think, worry, draw a plan to improve. Many times, you have to work or enjoy a social gathering; We also have the right to that despite our minds.
3. Accept that you are the way you are
According to psychologists, excessive negativity may be due to perfectionist traits that border on the obsessive. Envy and difficulty in admiring or recognizing the achievements of others have to do with this characteristic, for example. The others fail and get up again, and we are left with certain negative beliefs that it is difficult to change.
You don’t need a more positive thinking. You just need a more accurate one, ” Knock down your negative and false beliefs one by one:
«I need to like everyone»
In prehistoric ages, in order to survive, humans needed to be accepted by our peers. The banishment of a tribe meant, then, death. Rejection hurts so much because our body takes it as a threat and because before it was. But now you have other options if a community does not accept you.
No one needs to like everyone. You just need to like the people you care about, the one who can give you emotional support or make it possible for you to make a living. And falling well does not mean being perfect, just giving your best.
«I have to be good at everything»
There is no being who has mastered all the arts and abilities of mankind. And it’s better that way. There is something in which all people fail and that perhaps bothers us, but in reality it is a fact that we are not good at it. Acceptance is the best face you can put before this reality.
Not being good at something does not mean having to sit idly by losing the fun. If an activity feels good, dare to practice it even if you know you have no talent.
«My past defines me»
You cannot change the past, but you can do something to improve who you are in the present and bring that new person into the future. Don’t let the past haunt you: close the unfinished cycles and walk forward.