Your brain is a great tool, but sometimes your mind can drive you crazy. It can get into repetitive loops with the kinds of thoughts that bring you down or hold you back. Or, it can just spin out of control. If you are like most human beings, you are experiencing both.
Here is a simple way to retrain your brain and let go of these negative patterns of thinking:
Pay attention – you may not even notice your negative thoughts until you are already feeling bad. With awareness, you will be able to intervene much faster.
Turn down the volume – the voices in your head are auditory cues. One of the most effective ways to work with them is to imagine a volume control button and turn the sound down until you can barely hear them. It may seem weird, but it really works.
Take a deep breath – breath out the stress the thoughts created and breath in your more empowered, whole self.
Give yourself a different auditory cue – Choose a phrase to say to yourself like: blank slate or fresh start. You can do this out loud or in your mind. Make it your mantra for shifting negative thinking.
Give your mind a new job – ask yourself: Now that I have created this open space in my mind, what do I want to focus on next? Your mind will jump on the new assignment and the old yucky thoughts will be left behind.
Repeat as necessary – your mind has had years of practice thinking the way it does, but new neuro pathways can be created when you respond differently on a regular basis. When you use this process to create new habits of thinking, you will change your mind.