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Negative thoughts: how to manage them and remove them

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Negative thoughts are a reality that we all have to deal with at least once in our lives.

This is because genetically the human mind is predisposed to them, as well as for positive ones. The difference is that the former, if too frequent, can affect the general well-being of the person.

They usually arise in strong periods of stress but nowadays, thanks to social and economic uncertainty as well as the constant demand for perfection in the face of unsustainable rhythms, they are becoming predominant, especially among the youngest.

This, inevitably, leads to constant anxiety about future events which as a consequence leads to isolation and in the most serious cases can lead to depression.

We are not just talking about a pessimistic perspective on reality, but a habit of constantly visualizing negative scenarios in any situation . This tendency, if not controlled, can turn into an obstacle to daily life. But how can we face this challenge?

The starting point is awareness. Accepting that these negative thoughts are part of our experience, without them defining us, is fundamental. We must not allow them to dominate us, but learn to recognize them and distance ourselves from them . Let's see together how to do it.

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Why negative thoughts arise

Negative thoughts can have different causes:

  • Stress and anxiety: when you experience periods of high stress it is easier to have negative thoughts because you can feel overwhelmed by what surrounds you.
  • Low levels of self-esteem: People with low self-esteem tend to be more critical of themselves and see the glass as half empty.
  • Negative experiences: Traumatic or negative experiences can affect the way you think and see the world.
  • Thought disorders: Some mental disorders, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder or panic disorder, can cause recurring negative thoughts.

This doesn't mean that when they appear nothing can be done to change things, on the contrary. It is essential to understand how to deal with certain events to regain your well-being.

5 tips to keep them away

As we mentioned, it is essential to understand what the negative thoughts that grip us actually are.

  • The first step to managing them is learning to recognize them. When you notice that you have a frequent negative thought, it is essential to ask yourself: “Is this really realistic? Are there other possible interpretations of the situation?”.
  • We must not accept them passively. Although it is not easy, it is essential to question them and try to find evidence that disproves them.
  • They often focus on the past or the future. Learning to focus your attention on the present, on what you are experiencing is a further way to manage them.
  • It may seem complex but changing your internal dialogue can have incredible effects. For example, you can be kind to yourself, you can set achievable goals and focus on positive details during the day.
  • Finally, mindfulness can help you focus on the present and manage negative thoughts.

Negative thoughts are common and can be managed, but in more complex cases you should not hesitate to ask for help from a professional who, with the right skills, can help you build a more positive future.

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