Dealing with negativity; Practical ways to maintaining a healthy mental state of mind.
As emotional beings, we all have the profound ability to heal, bounce back and stand up after facing the travails of life which could be as a result of both internal and external factors. We all experience times where we become imbalanced, depressed, frustrated and hopeless. That is not something strange to feel because we all have emotions and also show reactions to difficult situations in life. There would be a problem if we just allow negatives thoughts and emotions to get to the extreme. Of cause, the effect would be detrimental to our intellectual, physical, spiritual, mental, and existential well-being. So the question to ask ourselves is, “How can we effectively deal with the negatives?.” I believe answering certain questions genuinely can help us deal with the negatives and enhance our coping skills in controlling those negative emotions.
Learning how to say goodbye to “dis-ease” (negative emotions/activities/toxic people/toxic situations) and consistently saying “yes-please” to positive thoughts and activities that can increase your mental, physical, spiritual, financial, intellectual, and existential wellbeing, is the key to decluttering our minds. We need understand what the life situations or stressors are telling you, how to find sources of imbalance and rectify them, and how to restore harmony while on a journey of positive transformation. You need to CONSTANTLY keep finding a place of wisdom within yourself so you can harness that wisdom to make profound changes in your life.
What are the sources of negativity and stressors in your life?
The stressors and sources of negativity could be difficult situations at home/workplace/religious centers/community or the society at large, relationships, negative and pent-up emotions and thoughts, unfriendly and toxic people, negative places and habits, etc.
Steps in dealing with the negatives:
Bear in mind that positive thinking and feeling good about yourself can affect every dimensions of your life. Attempt to identify, adjust or completely obliterate the sources of stress and negativity in your life by either by letting go off whatever or whoever that stresses your life unnecessarily, or by avoiding those unusual life stressors. The steps in dealing with the negatives include:
- Disconnect from negative people: Yes! You have to do away with negative and toxic people in your life. Some people play the role of naysayers, kibitzers, whippersnappers, and distortionists in the life of others. Remember what you allow or whom you allow is what will continue or stay in your life. You have to learn how to delete people from your life without giving any warning (this I mean those who are wired with negativity). As human beings, we are not supposed to be having any form of friendship or partnership with naysayers, crapehangers, destiny destroyers, dream killers (these adjectives actually describe those who are never okay with your ideas, big dreams, or life plans). We are created to mainly dissipate a positive energy and not a crisis energy. Although, some people are wired with negativity and they find pleasure in spreading that negative vibe. They have just one purpose: To make you become victim of self-doubt. They want to make you feel bad, inferior and that you are not good enough. These ones are really toxic, energy-draining and abusive. When you notice these set of people who disrespect you constantly, sound really pessimistic whenever you share your goals or dreams, ignores your boundaries, and belittle you or treat you in a harmful way, then QUICKLY do away with them.
- Unplug from the noise of the world: Sometimes in life, you need to turn down and be in a private mode to restore harmony and sanity in your mental system. You need to take a break from the world so that you can can reconnect with your soul and find inner wisdom to help you on your journey of positive transformation. You need to take a sabbatical from social gatherings, media and dramatic life. Get tired and switch off from the world of noise, soul polluters, emotional abusers, manipulators especially those ones who are covert narcissists, naysayers, drama queens/kings, etc. Stop letting the noise of others be your own opinion.
- Take control of situations: I would like to mention that in life, we need to take full control of whatever it is that is happening in our lives. You need to be the pilot or captain of your life. Stop giving others the responsibility for your happiness and success. You NEED to get tired of negative situations by doing the following:
- Stop catastrophizing: we imagine the worst possible outcome in life, and think it is the only outcome from certain situations. This is a distorted pattern of thinking and it’s very detrimental to our well-being. This MUST stop and that is by cultivating the habit of being optimistic. Start trusting that things will turn out for the better.
- Do away with polarized thinking. Most times we feel things must be either good or bad, or we have to be perfect or be a fiasco. This usually leads to a negative assessment and labelling. For instance, you saying “Oh gosh! I am such a stupid cow. I am not just good enough even with my beauty.”
- Letting go off the shame of past failures: Your past failures are not equal to your future. You have to shut the door of your past and live in/for the moment “now” to enjoy the future. All that matters is what you are doing right now to heal yourself. Don’t be a person who only concentrates on negative thoughts and emotions like shame, guilt, hopelessness, worthlessness, etc.
- Learn to dispute your negative thoughts: Don’t keep suppressing your thoughts and emotions, but acknowledge and adjust or alter them. Don’t allow pent-up emotions create a mental avalanche in you because you can easily lose objectivity. Try using learned optimism to dispute negative thoughts in your subconscious. Be willing and ever ready to always obliterate pent-up emotions from your mental system. You can use positive self-talk, or use mantra like “I can handle this. This too shall pass away,” “I am more than a conqueror,” “I am enough” and keep repeating it in difficult situations. Practice ‘thought-stopping’ by disallowing negative thoughts immediately. Take action to move forward by working towards a meaningful goal, projects or anything whatsoever that makes you completely happy.
- Focus on your strengths: Identify your strengths or potential, and use it all for productive activities that can earn you fulfilment, happiness, metanoia and tranquility. Start utilizing your strengths in every possible way that you can. Attend seminars/workshops/conferences that can empower and enlighten you, and help you enhance your skill set. With your strengths channeled towards productive activities, you will surely flourish and become the trailblazer that you have ever wanted to become.
- Take an opposite action: Do those things that can become a “yes-please” and not a “dis-ease.” For example, participate in fun physical activities, get medical care when needed, listen to upbeat music, watch or review your favorite movies, read good books, interact with your amazing friends and family, listen to inspirational messages, make time for self-reflection, travel to beautiful places, bake cupcakes, be aware of non-material aspects of your life, write out life nuggets reminding you of who you are, “Cogito ergo sum” (I think therefore I am) ~Philosopher René Descartes.
- Redefine your success and perfection: This will help you handle guilt, shame and frustration. It propels you to take a step faith towards redefining and purifying yourself. It helps you embark on that journey of transformation with confidence, high self-esteem and a better focus, while heading for greatness and transformation. Adjust your standards for things that will bring your joy and fulfilment. Learn to RESPOND and not to REACT to your emotions. Do something productive everyday. Ultimately, negativity will just be a past memory and positivity will embrace your nature.
Now ask yourself these questions:
- Are my just reacting or responding to your emotions, people and situations?
- Do you make decisions in your life by considering the noise/opinions of others?
- Do you accept responsibilities for the outcome of your choices?
- Are you generally aware of your thoughts, feelings, needs and wants?
- Are you flexible when things don’t go as planned?
- Do you treasure your divinity? Are you aware that you a piece of divine intelligence and you possess an inner wisdom?
- When situations become a mess, how can you turn it into a message of hope for yourself and others?