Sunday, 20 January 2013

The big lesson I've learned about negative thinking



If you are reading this post, you may suspect that negativity isn't a great coping mechanism for possible disappointment. You have heard the reasoning "I'm gonna do this but I won't keep my hopes up" many times, (from yourself and/or others)closely followed by a " I knew it" or "I told you so" and you sense there is something sinister underneath it all. You're right. Let me show you what it is.

Negative thinking is cunning. That gremlin is having you on, taking you for a ride, he's playin' you!

If you believe something won't work, your brain will automatically try and find reasons why it shouldn't work. You will even make them up if they don't exist. You will interpret things in a way that support your negative thought, even if you are utterly wrong in doing so. The scary thing is that your actions will align themselves to the negative thought so you get a negative outcome. 
Then you think you were right all along but actually, you've just been played.

Been there, done that. Got too many T-Shirts.

Case in point:

I recently was in urgent need of extra work. I was in a bit of a negative frame of mind to say the least because I hadn't had work in almost a month. I went to an interview, got the job although not in the department I was interviewed for. Then I got an email with the shifts I was on. I read it so fast I only noticed the negative: I wasn’t going to get all the shifts I had applied for. But I actually misread.I thought I was only going to have 3 shifts in 2 months!I had totally overlooked all the other shifts. I might as well had read the email with my eyes closed.

Ok, ridiculous image, but you catch my drift?
I was looking so hard for signs that I was going to be disappointed that I was temporarily blind to the evidence of the contrary. This could have made me miss my first shift and very likely the job. 

I am thinking many opportunities have been passed, many positive things overlooked because of this negative thinking. I know I'm not the only one (or am I???)

Obviously positive thinking alone cannot guarantee success but at least, it certainly doesn't impair our faculties like negative thinking does.

So remember that (talking to myself too) next time the gremlin strikes. He's-a-playin-you-(wo)man! Don't let it cheat you out of the many positive outcomes that are out there competing for your attention. 

The big lesson I learned from this episode is that I should always take the time to do my due diligence before jumping to conclusions. If I don't analyse the situation properly especially when I am not my best self, I will automatically gravitate towards negative conclusions and unwittingly attract more negative in my life.

Makes sense?
:P

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About the Author :

"Citizen of the world, believer, workafrolic, multipassionate vagabond out to turn his talents into business ventures. Will he do it? Stay tuned."

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