How to Overcome Negativity

Published on: July 30, 2012

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“Negativity can only feed on negativity”- Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Negative thoughts make us feel down and gloomy. We all know that negativity will destroy us, but we still think negatively and we behave negatively at times. To a certain extent, we aggravate our situation by taking things to another level in our minds. And even though we know it is not helping us, we somehow find ourselves stuck in the spiral of negative thoughts that recur again and again, following different patterns.

Thinking negative is like wearing dirty and dark glasses, because it fogs our vision and provides a highly distorted image of reality. When you entertain negative thoughts, you can’t find joy in life as your entire mindset convinces you that joy and happiness are not an option and even if you feel happiness, it is only temporary.

Negative thinking leads to negative actions, which creates a wall between you and your friends or other people. No matter how kind and open others may be, you will not trust them if you do not maintain a positive outlook towards life. Your negativity will lead you into thinking their kindness isn’t real and their good behaviour will not last long.

An especially harmful situation arises when a person enters a stage that is sometimes called the ‘negative negativity’. In this situation, a person is aware of his negative thinking – so much so, that he actually knows the exact pattern of his negative thinking. He is aware that this type of thinking is destructive and thus he goes into guilt for feeling so negative. And this trap of guilt proves to be even more harmful as it leads to more of negativity.

Yes, it does sound grim. This situation promotes negativity to a higher degree and creates a spiral. Negative thinking patterns aren’t naturally acquired; they are learned.

When we get the light of positivity, we can see the negativity clearly without mulling over it. This is when we decide to change ourselves and our way of thinking. It lightens up the heavy burden on our personality.

Here are five great ways to defeat negative thinking:

1. Use breathing techniques

After every few minutes, pause your work and just breathe. Concentrate on your breathing and feel yourself breathe. Enjoy the goodness that surround you. If you do this often, you will be more in touch with your inner self and feel tremendous energy, which will purify any negative thinking.

2. Keep a log about negative thinking

Carry a notebook with you. Whenever you feel you are experiencing a negative pattern, note it down along with whatever thoughts you are having and the cause behind them. After a couple of weeks, sit down and go through the notebook. Look for common themes that encourage negative thoughts. This will make you more aware about yourself.

3. Do stuff that you like

Take some time out from your schedule and enjoy your life. Do things that make you happy. Everyone wants to be happy, but they mostly can’t find time for it. Take a vacation, go for long walks in the park, go out for dinner or movie, or get a relaxing massage. Just slow down the pace and give yourself some peace of mind.

4. Appreciate the little things

Learn to see the brighter side of life. Be thankful for who you are and what you have. Keep in mind that no matter what happens, it is still possible to gaze up and behold the magic that is around you. Acknowledge the simple joys of life, like feeling of cool breeze on your skin, or how amazing the universe is. When you appreciate goodness, negativity dissolves away.

5. Spread the joy

Kindness never goes unrewarded. But somehow we all have forgotten this old saying. It is the greatest medicine that eases aching minds and hearts. When you make someone else happy, you get happiness in return. Generosity puts a sure end to negativity and generosity doesn’t have to be always shown. Try leaving the best parking spot for someone else. Or maybe clean up the office lunch room someday, and don’t let anybody know who did it. Doing small things like these will wash away your negativity and you will start feeling good about yourself.

If you be kind in this way, you release positive energy. Even if nobody gets to know about your generous acts, it will cheer you up and you’ll feel better from the inside. This will make you less negative and you will experience personal growth. Follow these simple points honestly and you’ll find a huge difference in less than a month.

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4 Responses to How to Overcome Negativity

  1. Emma-Lee says:

    I do agree with Michael, however, your 5 points to overcome negativity will take time to put into practice in one’s life. But as you keep reminding us, anything is achieveable.

  2. Michael James says:

    Wow what a topic! An interesting article which I enjoyed reading. In particular, your 5 points to overcome negative thinking. Simple and sharp, easy to adopt. Looking forward to implementing in my everyday life.


    • Thanks for the comment Michael. Negativity can creep up on us when we least expect it. We must remain vigilant and consistent in our pursuit of weeding out the negative thinking. Best of luck!

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