You ever get caught up in a negative thought or feeling that won’t go away? Like a song that you can’t get out of your head, a destructive thought or group of thoughts goes round and round in your head and you are stuck. Those noxious thoughts or feelings make life so much harder. Maybe you can’t sleep or feel grumpy. Maybe, it is a form of self sabotage.
However negative, there is a simple way to detach yourself from negative thoughts and emotions.
Did something come to mind? Maybe you aren’t all stressed out about something, but once in a while you are triggered by something negative and you choose to carry it around with you. You are mad all week and it wears you out. Your anger or your depression might start to wear you down.
I was watching a show where a character was trying out for a dance position and got caught up in thinking, “I am going to be cut, I am not going to make it.” She said she heard it in her head constantly. Guess what? She didn’t make it.
She was caught up in her own head and let the destructive thoughts take over and guide her right to what she let her mind dwell on.
Do you have one of those? Do you have a pattern of thought that gets you when you are down? Does it try to take you down a slippery slope of self loathing or anger?
Do your thoughts make you feel tired and negative?
There is a way to let go of those, but it takes a radical choice. You have to decide that those thoughts have no business trying to derail your life. It starts with awareness.
When you realize you are having negative/destructive/angry/self hatred thoughts, you can choose to cut them off before they take root. You can also jerk them up the rooted ones and cast them aside. How do you do it?
You say No.
How do you get rid of unproductive or harmful thoughts and emotions? You say No and cast it aside.
When I was in youth ministry, I use to tell the young people that being unkind or joking around in a coarse way was coarse jesting and that it was incorrect. We all laughed about it, but it stuck with them. Any time a new person came around, they would tell the new kid, “We don’t do that here, it is incorrect.”
Because I wanted to foster a positive, encouraging environment that was inclusive of any type of kid or young person, I decided that all the kidding around wasn’t always positive. We wanted a place where a young person could relax and not have to jockey to be the cool kid or defend themselves from attack. It was a safe place. By redirecting all coarse jesting that was hurtful with a simple “incorrect” statement, it stopped.
You can stop the attack on yourself by yourself the same way.
SAY NO. All that negative destructive harmful mess is INCORRECT.
Then, choose a place to switch to. You and God are in charge of your brain. If you cast aside the unwanted thoughts, you can ask God to put better thoughts there instead.
You can think in a way that make you feel better inside.
Have a positive thought at the ready. I used to make lists of positive thoughts, a good things list. After having gone through some terrible things, I needed a lot of positive reinforcement.
When your brain gets stuck on any negative idea, mentally or literally tell it NO. Then say what you would rather happen.
For instance, if my brain spouts off “You are going to have a terrible time” I say the opposite. I say “No, I am going to have a great time.” I negate the negative thought.
If I voiced the negative thought out loud, I then voice the positive thought out loud. I speak positive encouraging words to myself.
If I feel angry and feel like I want to wallow in being angry, I catch myself. I say NO. As soon as I realize it, I let it go. I choose not to wallow there. I choose better thoughts, better feelings. It might take a few minutes, but I collect myself and remind myself of all the good things I would rather think about, and let it go.
We don’t have to be prisoners of our thoughts and feelings. It is in our power to cast them aside, let them go, and choose better.
Did you feel that?
With God’s help, you can choose better.
If you are a Christian, you can say “In the name of Jesus, I cast aside _______. God please fill this place with something beautiful and uplifting.”
Our hearts and minds will go where we tell them to go.
Choose the best. Break free from every chain.
Barefoot and thinking lovely thoughts,
I have written several posts on this idea of thought pattern redirecting. So to read additional information, try one of these posts. One is If you can name it, you can get rid of it. Another is Fight For Your Life.
You can also read Words and Your Inner Voice.