The power of positive thinking. How to stop worrying in 3 steps. How to clearly evaluate your options in the situation. Ask your mind the right question to get an empowering answer.
I’m writing this post in this difficult time when the tiny virus is destroying the world. The situation is still new, still expanding and bringing a lot of fears, uncertainty, worries, and panic for some. I am not planning to expand on the subject, just wanted to let you know the circumstances that pushed me to write about positive thinking. I felt like my personal attitude was so much different than many others and I decided to share my point of view.
What is happening today in the world can not be compared with anything - it is an extremely negative side of our reality. Having in mind that my understanding of this world was always leaning towards the fact that we create our own reality, I have no answer to why or how we could create this negative event. But I still believe that we can create our personal reality in this worldwide contrast. The Law of Attraction is still the manager of creation. And our mind or more precisely our thoughts are still making ‘’orders’’ to the Universe. Now more than ever is important to focus on the positive side, try to find faith instead of worry, love, and compassion instead of blame, and trust instead of fear.
I believe I have developed this skill of thinking positively over the years. I usually find a way to see the bright side in any circumstances, I am able to find the growth in the challenge, opportunity in the problem, benefits in the presence of a loss. That all together is a positive mindset in my understanding. And it is just a habit anybody can develop. I was analyzing my thought patterns and attitude in comparison with people around in this tough time. Our experiences or risks are not different, but the perspectives are like day and night. I’m not here to say that happily jumping around while people are dying is a better way to deal with the situation, but it sure feels better to see the positive side, than being trapped in fear, panic or anxiety.
A while ago my negative and dis-empowering thinking took me to the point that I had to change. I came across a wonderful book that changed my perspective significantly - ‘’How to stop worrying and start living’’ by Dale Carnegie. I've come to realize that overthinking and worrying does not change the situation, it does not reduce the problem, but it can certainly paralyze me from taking action and for sure it does not make me feel good. My strategy in the presence of a problem was to imagine the worst possible outcome, accept it as a possibility with the understanding that I can not change the situation. When I accept the worst outcome, then anything else that happens is much better and statistically or probably the very worst situation is not likely to occur. Meaning our mind is able to come up with a worse idea than is likely to happen. That's how our brain functions, this is how we are wired to think in order to protect ourselves. Unfortunately, this thinking pattern is not helpful for our mental and physical well-being, because it can keep us in a constant state of stress. As you know, stress significantly weakens a person's immunity and limits well-being.
See, if you can in your mind accept the worst outcome - you have succeeded in breaking the pattern of worrying. There is no reason left to be worried - from that point you can only think of better outcomes than the one you have accepted. This is already positive thinking. Out of stress and worry your brain can get creative and come up with multiple options of positive outcomes. When you relax you will see how many great ideas will come to your head, a solution might suddenly appear and that couldn't happen in the state of worrying. It's all about consciously taking a moment to think through the situation, don't give yourself a luxury of time in the state of worrying - be aware, be conscious, follow the steps:
The positive thinking guide:
1 - think of a very worst outcome in the situation
2 - accept it as a possibility, even better to imagine your plan of action if that happens. Be OK with it knowing that you can not change the situation.
3 - understand that the worst scenario is not likely to happen so things will turn out better than what you accepted. It is easy to get happy at this point.
When your mind is free from worry and you can step outside yourself to observe the situation - consider the action plan. Evaluate what you can do being in unpleasant situations or having a problem. Make a list or think through the things you can not affect, that is not in your power - accept them so you don't need to worry there. Determine what you can do to improve the situation, to solve a problem, make a list if it's necessary. Now, this is exciting, you know what you can do! Go and do that! Oh, it feels so good to take action knowing it will improve your situation, enjoy the process, have fun with it.
1 - determine what you can do about the situation and what you can not do.
2 - the things you can not influence, you don’t need to worry about.
3 - the things you can do to change the outcome - get up and do them.
The process is very simple but as usual might not be easy. It requires awareness of your thoughts, willingness to change the thinking patterns, self-discipline to put yourself together in a critical situation. It is really just like any other habit you might want to develop. If you practice the process, with the time you will not even get worried - you will just observe the situation and come up with a bunch of opportunities, solutions or plans of action in the presence of others going crazy.
Another mind trap is negative thinking based on past events. Why did this happen to me… I should have said something else in that situation,... What did they think of me?... I screwed up, I will never be able to change… Does it sound familiar? When thinking like this you are depriving yourself of life - you can not change the past. You can only learn from your mistakes, grow because of your negative experiences, decide to behave differently than you did before or others behaved towards you. Anything else is not serving you. Let the past go and enjoy your life now. Aiming to be aware of a present moment is the key here. The present moment is all you really have, it is where life happens, everything else is just a simulation in your brain - your computer program.
Our brain is an interesting mechanism - and when you understand its functions you can play a trick on it too. See when we have a bad day, some negative experience - we typically ask WHY questions. WHY is my boss sitting on my neck? WHY do I always mess things up? WHY can't I attract positive people in my life? And our habitual negative thinking brain is there to give us answers - because you are not qualified... because you suck... because you are a loser... And then we feel so much worse. That's why never ask yourself a WHY question - ask HOW or WHAT instead. WHAT should I do to satisfy my boss and prove my qualifications? HOW to make things work? HOW could I attract positive people into my life? And watch your mind coming up with the answers, with the solutions and empowering ideas. It will make you feel so much better than being stuck in the loop of questioning WHY.
It feels good to think positive. If you care how you feel, if you want to manage your emotions - start with your thoughts. Look for good feeling thoughts, look for fun things to do, or better say - look for the fun in everything you do. It's just a habit - negative thinking is a habit just like positive thinking. It is as easy to think a positive thought as it is to think a negative one. It is up to you where you put your energy. In positive thinking there is no place for blaming others or yourself, for complaining, for criticism, for anger, it's being transformed into compassion, love, understanding, acceptance, peace, and joy.
Empower yourself - take control - be positive!