Have you ever broken a habit and thought you were “cured?” The habit could be big like smoking or smaller like reducing coffee from three cups a day to two! It is embarrassing for me to admit and professionally challenging to recognize that a habit I have addressed in the past is back. This habit drains my energy, reduces my quality of life, and makes me less effective in my work. This habit is so supported by the world around me…the habit of negative thinking or speaking.
This habit can show up very subtly as “I can’t stand this hot weather.” or “I will never get this, it is so hard.” These complaints appear to be facts and may generate agreement or sympathy from those around me. When the real truth is “Today is another day of sunshine or today will be over 90 again,” or “I have made three attempts to learn this.” The complaints seem to generate more agreement or sympathy than the facts! The other way the habit shows up is in the negative thoughts in my head, for example “Why can’t you learn faster, is there something the matter with you,” “He will never…” or “I knew it would be boring.”
Ever happen to you? What we do not realize is how we are creating a self-fulfilling prophecy and actually draining our energy. Just take a moment and say to yourself “I failed again” or “I tried again.” There is a difference in these two statements that you can actually feel. Usually negative thinking has just become a habit..we are surrounded by negativity in the media (it is so exciting!) and most of us have been taught to start with criticism before praise.
When I changed this habit in the past, I found I had more energy, more positive people and behaviors appeared, I was more creative and actually had more abundance show up in my life. I am determined to break this habit again. Here are the steps I used before and will use again.
- Commit to thinking positive thoughts for 1 hour at first (setting a timer on my phone) and expanding the commitment to 24 hours and then one week.
- Become conscious of my words and thoughts. Notice when I state something in a negative way. Just noticing is the first step.
- Be gentle with myself when it happens and restate or re-frame each thought as quickly as possible.
- Take a few moments to acknowledge my progress each day. Recommitting at the end and beginning of each day.
- Notice how my energy is feeling, what changes are happening around me (usually people seem nicer), and what new things are showing up in my life!
I hope you will consider joining me in this as I know it will change your life! What we put out is what we get back. The best way to attract positivity in life is to give it out. After all everything is energy!