I was teaching a course in the Middle East today and, for the first time, shared a number of different approaches to changing your attitude that are simple, easy and fast to apply. As the audience did the exercise, I realised that they grasped it quickly. So, I figured why not offer you the same three approaches.
These approaches can be used on any of your negative internal dialogue. They were developed by combining material from a number of fields including NLP, Positive Psychology, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Linguistic Intelligence.
It works like this. You take some negative thought. Usually it is either in the form of a worry about the future or a sad feeling about a situation from the past. It will either be a bad perspective on something or it will be an actual problem you are complaining about. Here are 3 strategies to handle it:
- The word BUT focuses all the attention on what comes after it. Even if you start speaking positively to yourself there is no guarantee that you will stop speaking negatively and often negative thinking sounds more powerful than positive thinking. By using BUT you can train your mind to think BAD THOUGHT BUT GOOD THOUGHT or even better PROBLEM BUT SOLUTION. By training yourself to always go Negative BUT Positive you are conditioning yourself for happiness and success.
- IN OTHER WORDS. This is a really cool way of changing negative thoughts. Whenever you use different words to describe your problems you will massively change the negativity that you feel about them. Ask yourself HOW COULD THIS BAD SITUATION ACTUALLY BE A GOOD SITUATION? or HOW COULD THIS BE THE BEST THING THAT HAS HAPPENED TO ME? By asking one of those two questions you can actively allow yourself to say IN OTHER WORDS and reframe and rephrase the negative thought by finding out how it could be a good thing.
- Finally, you can challenge and knock down any negative thought by checking it against a number of questions. Whenever you think a bad thought you can ask yourself:
- IS THIS REALLY TRUE?
- IS THIS RELEVANT TO ME?
- IS THIS USEFUL?
- WHAT CAN I LEARN?
By asking these questions you will knock out the vast majority of negative thoughts and free yourself to grow and become better as you move forward.
Please try these out and let me know how you got on!!