Still skeptical that positive thinking doesn’t work? That’s OK, many people doubt it. But ironically, proof that it does work can be found by looking at negative thinking.
Negative thinking is equally as powerful as its opposite. It can make you sick. It definitely makes you unpleasant to be around. And, it considerably limits what you can achieve.
It’s the notion of a “self-fulfilling prophecy” in action—what we expect turns out to be what we get. Expect negative results and, sure enough, you’ll generate negative results.
Increased stress and lower energy levels are also linked to negative thinking. Studies have demonstrated that negativity weakens your immune system. How many times have you gotten sick during a stressful period in your life?
But why is it that negative thoughts seem to come so much more naturally than positive ones? It’s a habit. We tend to focus on the annoyances and problems in our lives, rather than on everything that’s right. We are bombarded with negative news and told we need to meet impossible ideals. We’ve forgotten the joy of simple pleasures and lack gratitude.
How to switch gears? It takes discipline and practice, but you can control your thought patterns.
Start by eliminating as many of the negative influences around you as possible. An easy one to limit is your intake of the news. You can find out what’s going on in the world without repeated focus on violence and destruction. Then, you want to replace the negative inputs with positive ones.
Read positive materials on a daily basis. Listen to motivational audio tapes or CDs, or to music that inspires or relaxes you. Spend time each day thinking about what you have to be grateful for.
After a couple of weeks of practice, positive thinking should come much more naturally. And I doubt you’ll missing those negative thoughts any more.