How To Stop Being Negative: 10 Powerful Ways To a Happier Mindset
Updated on July 12, 2021 by Amber & The Team
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Today, it’s so easy to be negative. I mean, every single day you’re blasted with negative news on the media! But that’s just a cherry on top.
The cake is all the daily struggles you have to deal with and – surprise surprise – the biological tendency of our brain to be negative.
It turns out, we’re naturally more sensitive to negative things so we tend to emphasize them more (thanks brain, you never cease to amaze us).
Sprinkle some workplace drama, stress, and misfortunes (yes, everyone gets to deal with problems, no matter how lucky you think they are) and here you have a perfect negativity cake.
“What’s wrong with cakes Amber, I really like cake, do you have a problem with it? Choose your words wisely.“
Oh no! Cake is incredible. It’s just that the negativity cake is not that tasty. In fact, it’s really bitter. And the more you eat it, the more bitter you become yourself.
Eat this cake every day, and you might as well get sick. Thankfully, this is all preventable, and fixable.
HOW TO STOP BEING NEGATIVE
What is the main cause of negative thinking?
Usually, negative thinking is a result of various negative thoughts, irrational beliefs, thought distortions, and life experiences that leave a negative mark on someone’s life. This can happen suddenly, or be developed through the years of trauma, abuse, and unhappy events. Negative thinking is almost always noticed in people who have depression or anxiety too.
Why do I always look for the negative?
If you’ve been negative for a long time, you might notice that:
- It’s getting harder and harder to go with your day without getting upset or angry.
- If something stressful happens, you tend to expect the worst possible outcome instantly – and believe that it’s the ONLY possible outcome (which is rarely true, just so you know).
- Positive events stop giving you joy because you immediately remind yourself that “this might be temporary and another trouble is right around the corner.”
Do you notice a pattern here? Something bad happened before, and now you’re generalizing and thinking that this is bound to happen again. Every little thing is a sign of impending doom… All the good things are too small to be noticed…
I used to think like that all the time. And I still sometimes do. But just so you know, it’s only the tricks your mind plays to protect you from the “possible” danger. You have trained your mind to be overly protective and overly negative (but that’s not your fault). And did I mention that people are naturally prone to notice bad things more?
Also, some people are just more skeptical and pessimistic than others – that’s fine. We need to be rational and skeptical because it helps us protect ourselves and make the right decisions.
How can I change my negative mindset?
Since you’ve landed on this article, I think it’s a pretty good indicator that you secretly find yourself a little too negative. A bit too full of that bitter cake.
If that’s the case, let’s not wait any longer! Here are the things that help me keep a negative mindset at bay and go through life with a belief that the glass is half full, not half empty.
They are easy, yet powerful enough to help you beat negative mindest once and for all.
How To Stop Being Negative: 10 Powerful Ways To Try
1. How Can I Stop Being a Toxic Person?
Do a mental declutter to eliminate negative beliefs about yourself and other people.
That’s right! One of the main reasons you’re being negative is because you have a lot of negative beliefs.
Think of them as roots of the tree. A tree stands because it has strong roots in the ground. The deeper they go, the stronger the tree. Same thing with your negativity – the more negative beliefs are rooted in your mind, the stronger your negativity tree. Cut those roots off, and the tree starts to fall (just don’t cut the real trees please!).
To find your negative beliefs, take a sheet of paper (or a pretty notepaper if you’re fancy) and write down all the negative things you’re always thinking about yourself or others.
Here’s an example: I used to have a negative belief that all people are selfish and only care about themselves. Is this true? Not really.
Yes, there are a lot of selfish people, but definitely, not all of them are like that. There are a lot of people who are ready to help others first (volunteers, doctors, firefighters, mothers).
Once I got rid of that negative belief, my life immediately started to look more positive. So think well, find your negative beliefs and bravely let them go.
2. How Do I Stop Being Easily Offended?
Stop criticizing things, products, and people that don’t align with your perfect world idea.
If you always think that everything should be the way you think it should be, you’re bound to be disappointed. Your worldview is not the most important (I’m sorry!), and neither is anyone else’s.
Let people do the things they do and refrain from criticizing them – you’re not gaining a single benefit from being negative about something. Our world is huge and there will always be a boiling soup of different opinions and needs. That doesn’t make your opinion useless, but it doesn’t make it the right one too.
3. How Do I Change My Thoughts From Negative To Positive?
Stop expecting things to go right or wrong. Just let them unfold.
Healthy, fact-based expectations are OK but if you always label situations with guesses like “this will probably be bad” or “I will probably fail”, you’re just feeding yourself the negativity cake.
Instead, just let things unfold without any particular expectations. Let them happen.
You can also try reframing negative thoughts with a thought workbook. This CBT-based tool helps you to notice irrational beliefs and unhealthy thinking patterns that may be dusting more pepper on your cake!
4. How Can I Stop Being Jealous?
Stop comparing yourself to other people. Period.
If you spend a lot of time absorbing negative information on the internet, social media, forums, or Netflix, it can make things look pretty gray. But even without that, you might find yourself being jealous of your colleague’s life, clothes, beauty, husband, car – the list is endless. This kind of thinking is extremely damaging to your self-confidence. There are better ways to approach this.
How To Stop Being Negative About This Now?
Make a promise to yourself and from now on, only compare yourself to yourself. This is the only just way to compare and evaluate yourself because:
- There will always be people who are better-looking, happier, richer, smarter than you. You can’t ever be the best of the best, this is unrealistic.
- By comparing yourself to yourself, instead of being negative, you can be supportive and gently push yourself towards your goals.
Doesn’t that sound so much healthier? Easier? More pleasant?
Trust me, once you dust off and push that self-love button, you will stop caring about other people and how they’re “better than you”. You will only be interested in nurturing the friendship, love, and relationship with yourself because that’s what really matters.
5. How do I change my thoughts from negative to positive?
Practice being positive every day (preferably with a positivity journal).
Just as you’ve learned to think negative thoughts, you can learn to think positive ones too. I find it easier with a positivity journal (which is optional!).
Positivity journal is a fun and creative way to practice positive thinking and focus on the bright side.
By doing positive exercises, you start taking real action towards brighter thoughts. And as in every goal, the first step to achieving something is taking that first action.
You can create your own positivity journal, or try a ready-to-use journal as well. Here’s a printable Positivity journal I designed and use myself to boost my positivity when negative thoughts start to creep in:
What I love the most about this journal is that it helps you train your mind to find negativities and replace them with something more positive.
It also helps you to concentrate on the things that are going well, and it brightens your mood immediately.
6. How do I rewire my brain?
Work on relieving your stress daily.
Being tired and exhausted can impact your mindset and make you negative without any particular reason. No wonder people are so moody, angry, and irritated when they’re tired!
To rewire your brain and make space for beautiful, positive, and bright thoughts, you must first allow yourself to let go of the negative and relax.
Here are the things you can do to relax and de-stress on a daily basis:
- 50 Self Care Activities To Boost Your Wellbeing
- 15 Mindfulness Activities To Try When You’re Anxious
- 30 Ways To Calm Down Your Mind
- Printable Anti Anxiety Bundle For Daily Anxiety Relief
7. How To Stop Being Negative Towards Others?
Accept the fact that you can’t control other people. Period.
That’s right – you should stop caring about other people’s thoughts, words, or actions unless you can positively impact them, or when they are threatening your safety.
People are people and every one of us has an undeniable right to do what we think is best for us. If someone is making you negative with their actions, or if you disapprove of something they say – that’s fine, you have a right to your own opinion and it’s normal to not agree with everything. But on the other side of the rope, you can’t change other people, so being negative and bitter about their actions/words/opinions is just another piece of negativity cake – for you.
Let go of any anger and disappointment you’ve accumulated from people not acting the way you want them to.
P. S. If someone feels like danger, he or she probably is. Remove yourself from dangerous situations ASAP!
8. How To Stop Being Negative At Home
Surround yourself with a positive environment!
That is positive activities, positive objects, organized, clean and tidy home... Things that are bright, happy, and beautiful! Like flowers.
If you often find yourself feeling particularly negative at home, it might be that your home is filled with negative things (dust, dirt, clutter, old and broken things, things you don’t like, or there are no rules in your home). While it’s not some kind of magic, being in a negative environment does have an impact on our mood. So, to stop being negative, you might as well try making your home brighter, cleaner, and even more colorful, if you like!
9. How To Stop Being Negative And Angry, Irritated, Mad… Well, that’s a full bouquet of emotions!
Take a break, do something new, or go on a trip!
Sometimes we’re being negative just because we’re tired and irritated with our everyday routine.
Our brain always craves things that are new, fresh, and exciting so no wonder you fall out of the positivity wagon if you’ve been doing nothing else but grinding the same work-home-work routine.
If you can, go on a trip. It will surely help you clear out your head, relax, and set a new beginning with a new mindset.
If a trip is not an option right now, check out this list: 25 Positive Ideas For When Your Life Feels Boring
It may help you to find a new fun thing to focus on and give your brain some shiny new excitement!
10. How Do You Avoid Negativity On a Daily Basis?
Develop a daily gratitude habit.
Finally, gratitude. A simple, yet powerful way to help yourself take a different look at your life, yourself, and your situation.
So often we obsess about things that are not important at all… I learned this lesson the hard way when my dad got sick with cancer. Suddenly, all the problems that used to be so huge to me became tiny as a grain of sand.
Gratitude can help you to shift your focus on things that you already have, instead of thinking about what you lack.
Here’s an article I wrote about that: 5 Ways To Stay Positive With Gratitude
And if you want to start practicing gratitude as a healthy everyday habit, this printable Gratitude Journal can help you do that in a fun and creative way:
How To Stop Being Negative – a Recap
You made it! You have rocked this list and by now, you should see that there are, at least, some options you can try to stop being negative. Let’s summarize them!
The 10 things to try to stop being negative:
- Eliminate negative beliefs.
- Stop criticizing things that don’t align with your opinion.
- Stop expecting things to go one or another way.
- Stop comparing yourself to other people.
- Practice a better mindset with a Positivity Journal.
- Work on stress relief daily.
- Accept the fact that you can’t control other people’s actions.
- Surround yourself with a positive environment at home.
- Take a break or go on a trip regularly.
- Develop a daily gratitude habit.
Try to implement at least a few of these, and soon you’ll notice that being negative is gradually becoming a thing of your past. Isn’t that great? It means that you can stop binging on that bitter negativity cake that was making you sick and unhappy. You might even lose weight! And I mean literally – constant stress and a negative mindset have also an impact on our eating habits!
Life is beautiful. ALLOW yourself to see that.
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