Last post we spoke about defeating your demons. Today we are going to talk about a specific demon. That is the demon of negative thinking. Boy is this one a tricky one. I don’t care who you are, it creeps in the mind of everybody. Even the always bubbly coworker who can drive you nuts. On occasion, they have a bad day or a moment of self-doubt. One of the greatest tricks the demon of negative thinking uses is to convince you that having these thoughts in some way makes you a failure. This creates a feedback loop from hell, as author Mark Manson says. You have a negative thought. Then you feel bad about yourself for thinking negative, which makes you feel bad. Then you start to feel bad for feeling bad. On and on the loop can go. That is unless you can stop it!

The million dollar question becomes, “How do we control the habit of negative thinking?” I recommend a 3-step process. That process is – motivation, preparation, and habit. We will quickly tackle these one at a time. They will be expanded on more in my fifth book, Save Yourself. That is not due out until 2025 at the earliest. Being that we want to nip negative thinking in the bud now, let’s dive into our first step of the process – motivation. We need to start the day motivated. If this seems like a next to impossible task, I understand. I wake up for work 6 days a week at 4am. Including Mondays when I DJ until 2am. I understand the challenge of waking up motivated. Another way to state this is to ‘wake up with intent’. Years ago I did a video for my YouTube Channel called “Waking up in neutral” I put the link at the bottom of this post. Ask yourself do you have a written intent you wake up to in the morning? This can be one of the simplest fixes.

Many people picture someone standing on the sidelines yelling and cheering them on when they think of the word ‘motivation’. That isn’t really what the word even means. Motivation means to “have a motive”. First thing in the morning, before the world distracts you, is the best time to set your motive. Actually, embedding it in your mind the night before will allow your subconscious mind to get a jump start on it. I suggest writing out a simple one or two line mantra that will tell your mind the kind of day you are expecting to have. An example might be, “I am going to have a great day. I will learn from every situation in life, even the challenging ones, and I will not let them bring me down.” This is only an example. Write something that is meaningful to you and put it somewhere you will see it. Maybe tape it to the bathroom mirror or by the coffee maker. I suggest saying your intention out loud. Maybe if several times on the morning commute. If you want to take control of your life, it is time to stop waking up on accident and declare your intent for the day.

Now that we have a purpose and intent for our day, it is on to step two. That step, as mentioned above, is preparation. Here is a not so shocking news flash – you are going to have a bad day. You are going to have a day where you feel down. Not so positive there, but it is true. The secret to an amazing life is not to be depressed by this news, but to prepare for it. What does preparing for a bad day or a bout of negative thinking look like? It is creating a list of things that can help you combat the negativity in your life. You may be thinking that you already know things that lift your spirits, and that may be true. When you are in the middle of one of the storms of life, those things may slip from your mind. Having them written down to be able to refer to without thought makes this process easier and more effective. Mine, for example, is going for a walk in nature, watching several of my favorite movies, spending time with certain friends. One of my favorite is listening to music that puts me in a good mood. That is why I recommend creating a ‘Happy Playlist’ in my first two books. Music has a way to rapidly transform our emotional state with just the push of a button. Save a list on your phone, which everyone seems to always have with them. It might not be a bad idea to have a file named ‘happy day’ with a list of the items that can pick you up on there as well. That way you will have the list no matter where you are.

We have set our intention. We are saying it out loud, maybe several times, every morning. We have prepared for the inevitable bad day by creating a list of things that raise our spirits. Maybe even creating a ‘Happy Playlist’ of our own. Now what? That brings us to the third and final habit – habits. Developing habits that serve us is the secret to maintaining a positive life. In my own life, I have a file saved on my phone that is filled with positive affirmations I listen to every morning on the way to work. I have scheduled days that I go to the gym, which helps release endorphins that boost your mood. I make sure to schedule quality time in nature, with friends and of course with my lovely lady. These habits not only reduce the chance of letting life get to me, but unlocking the secret of what to do when it does,

Use this 3-step process in your own life, starting today. We never know when a challenging day, or some negative thinking, will be coming our way. We do know now how we can defeat them and live a more positive life. It is important to remember if we do fall victim to life and feel down, we have not failed. It is a part of life. It may be setting us up for a period of growth. It may be just providing us a chance to practice and strengthen these very practices. Last note, this is an evolving process. You can add to, or change your morning intention. You can add to the list of things that make you happy as you discover new ones. You can tweak and add positive habits as you go along. Life is ever evolving. We should be too.

One thought on “3 STEPS TO A POSITIVE LIFE πŸ˜ƒ

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