If there was a year to be affected by the power of your thoughts, 2020 was it. Whether you contracted COVID or knew someone who did, whether you were stuck working from home or had your whole life ripped out from under you after losing a job, many people suffered from the emotional roller coaster that came in 2020. While it wasn’t always easy, one thing 2020 showed was the power of your thoughts. While some people felt more down than ever before, others were able to thrive in 2020. In part this is due to luck of the draw in terms of jobs and opportunities, but in other part, it was due to peoples’ mindsets. What some saw as negatives, such as no more big parties and spending more time at home, others saw as positives such as more time with the family or more time to learn a new skill. 2020 showed people the power of their minds without even realizing it. 2021 is the year to take control over you thoughts and learn how they shape your reality.
How Your Mind, Body, and Emotions are Interconnected
Have you ever noticed that sometimes you wake up in a bad mood, and on that same day you have a pounding headache, and everything seems to go wrong all in the same day. Yet, there’s other days where you wake up excited about something in your life and it feels like nothing in the world can bring you down? This is your thoughts directly influencing your reality. The mind, body, and emotions are all interconnected and affect one another in more ways than we realize. Where a positive attitude can turn a negative situation into an opportunity, a negative attitude can sour even the most positive situations.
While most people understand the power of their thoughts on the surface, what most people do not realize is that your active thoughts quickly become your subconscious thoughts. Every single reaction to an outside event reinforces your natural way of thinking. It is for this reason that what you surround yourself with has such a large impact on your mental state. Think about negativity, and you’ll notice your mind is constantly in a negative place. Think about positivity, and somehow the challenges in life don’t seem quite as bad.
We’re all guilty of getting in our own heads at time and letting the negativity take over. This happened to everyone to an extent in 2020. Instead of focusing on how fortunate we are for being able to work from home, we got down about not seeing our family and friends, instead of being thankful for more time with the kids we focused on how much they were driving us crazy. While it’s OK to feel down sometimes, the goal is to make sure you don’t stay in a negative space. Allowing negative thoughts to take over for too long of a time can lead to health issues and a general feeling of sickness. However, learning to take ownership of your thoughts can help you jump out of a negative headspace and reboot your thoughts.
Why Do You Default To Negative Thinking and What To Do About It
If you’re reading this and feel you may be stuck in a negative thought cycle, try not to be too hard on yourself. Most people don’t go about their day trying to be negative. Rather, negativity my be a byproduct of their environment. Below are a few of the reasons you may find yourself thinking negatively throughout the day:
- You’re surrounded by negative people: It’s been said that we are the sum of the people around us. If you surround yourself with negative people, its only a matter of time before your thinking becomes negative as well. Negative people may be as obvious as someone being mean to you, or as subtle as “friend” who doesn’t clap for you when your win. Make a more conscious effort to evaluate how you feel when you’re around different people in your life. This can help you to differentiate between those that boost your positivity, and those that drag your thoughts down.
- You lack confidence: Another reason you may be having negative thoughts is because you don’t feel good about yourself. Whether you lack confidence in the way you look, your level of education, your job, or who you are as a person, feeling insecure can lead to perpetually negative thoughts. The best way to combat this is by taking action. If you feel insecure about your appearance, find one thing on your body you do love an focus on that, surround yourself with those who see your beauty, or, make a change like going for a jog or getting glammed up for the day. If you’re insecure about your education or career, take a class online or interview for that dream job you have been thinking about. If you’re insecure about who you are, take some time for radically conscious self-improvement.
- It’s how you’ve been trained: Whether you grew up in a family full of negative thinkers, or you tend gravitate to seeing problems versus solutions, sometimes negative thinking is simply a matter of habit. While habits can be very difficult to break, it is possible. If you’re a habitual negative thinker, force yourself to see the positive in any situation. Carry a small pen and paper with you, or simply even use the Notes App in your phone. Every time you have a negative thought, write it down. Then write down what the positive outlook of that same thought.
- Negative thought: “Of all the years to have a trip to Europe planned, of course its the year an unprecedented pandemic hits.”
- Positive Thought: “It’s a bummer that COVID hit the year of my trip, but now I have more time to plan!”
How to Use Your Thoughts for Good During This Time
It’s crazy that something as intangible as your thoughts could be powerful enough to shape your reality. In a time like this, we have all seen just how powerful the mind can be. We were all faced with the same situation…an unprecedented pandemic that affected every last person in the world. However, some people thrived in quarantine while others struggled. Much of this is due to the way people think. If you have been struggling during quarantine, what better time to work on turning your thoughts into positive ones.
The next time you are feeling down, try to take a step back, acknowledge what’s causing your negative thoughts, and try to see the positive. The world is not black and white and every situation has at least a sliver of grey. The more you are able to see the grey in the world due to your positive thoughts, the better you will see your reality become.