TGIF! Yes, I am glad it is FRIDAY! I may be working all week-end at my part-time job BUT it is a chance for me to breathe. Yesterday was CRAZY! It was the final day to get orders in to guarantee Christmas delivery. You would have thought it was Black Friday or something.
As we get closer to the holidays, do you find that some days you are more positive than others? Maybe the stress of holiday shopping or not having enough money or your job are getting you down. Maybe it is a health challenge or being away from family. I will admit that some days I have to STOP the negative talk before it spirals out of control. Being on the verge of a Negative Nelly has you on the road to sabotaging your success, ruining relationships and even sinking into depression.
Valerie Burton shares five techniques to keep negative thoughts from spiraling out of control:
1. Breathe intentionally.
Research shows that proper deep breathing – you breathe from your diaphragm rather than shallow breathing from your chest – reduces blood pressure, anxiety and stress. Take one minute and focus your thoughts on your breath. Feel it enter your nose, fill your belly and exit through your mouth. Center yourself in this moment. Relax.
2. Anticipate the negative and be ready with the positive.
Expect negative thoughts to cross your mind, especially when you are dealing with stress. But choose not to dwell on them. Instead, meditate on the positive. Focus on what you are grateful for. Focus on the opportunity you have for change and improvement. These are things within your control.
3. Get out and about.
Sunshine and fresh air can do wonders for your mood. Being stuck physically – whether at work or home – can leave you stuck mentally. So get out. Take a walk. Ride your bike. Run some errands. Stand on the porch or patio for a few minutes and soak up the rays. Sunshine helps your body produce vitamin D and has been shown to be a mood lifter.
4. Do something fun.
We know that negative emotions are more powerful than positive ones, right? Did you know that you need at least three positive emotions to overcome the negatives you face. So when you are particularly challenged with negative conversations, one way to counter them is to have some fun. What do you like to do for fun? Go do it. What brings you joy? Incorporate more of it into your life today.
5. Get around funny, happy people.
Happiness is contagious. And when Negative Nellie is knocking on your door, it doesn’t help to be around other negative people. Who makes you laugh? Who always puts a smile on your face? Who knows how to find peace and joy even in the midst of chaos or challenges? That’s who you need to hang out with. Give them a call, stop by their desk at work, or get together for dinner tonight. You won’t have time to let those negative thoughts spiral out of control – you’ll be too busy laughing and enjoying good company!
What is YOUR best tip for negative thoughts from spiraling out of control?
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!