Tips for Getting Through the Holidays – Part 1
Do you ever find yourself getting stuck in negative thought patterns and expecting the worst possible outcome in every situation? It’s a common mind-set that proves difficult until you finally decide you’ve had enough. Unfortunately, negative thoughts tend to breed and multiply on their own – even when you’re not consciously trying to think negatively.
The good news is that turning a negative outlook into a positive one just takes a bit of patience and persistence until the positive thoughts begin to take over.
Below you’ll find two simple steps to begin forming positive expectations on a daily basis:
1) Develop self-awareness to recognize negative expectations. Negative thoughts often form below your conscious level of awareness, and you get so used to them being in your head that you hardly notice anymore. To turn the tide of negativity, you’ll have to develop a stronger level of self-awareness. Start by performing self-checks several times a day. Pay attention first to how you feel. If you’re feeling positive and productive, most likely you’ve been thinking positive thoughts. However, if you notice that you’re feeling irritable, pessimistic or stressed, you’re probably focusing more on negative thoughts. When that happens:
2) Challenge and change the negative thoughts. If you find yourself feeling anxious about your visit to your in-laws home for a holiday celebration, you might engage in a bit of self-talk like this: “Okay, so I’m feeling a bit worried right now, but really everything is okay. I’m calm, I’m assertive and I’m capable of engaging in friendly conversations and activities with all types of people and personalities. I’ll do my best and everything will work out fine.” Even though nothing has changed in your outer circumstances, this type of self-talk can get you thinking and feeling more positive.
When you encounter obstacles or problems, see them as opportunities to learn, grow and strengthen yourself. Perception is 99% of the game! If you simply work on shifting the way you look at the experiences of your life, you can easily conquer your negative thought habits.
Enjoy the season.