When positive thinking doesn't cut it

when positive thinking does not cut it

Can you relate? You practice mindfulness, your thoughts are positive, and you generally have confident expectations.

But then so many bad things happen in your life, that the good advice that worked for so long just sounds cynical.

“Be in the moment, in the NOW”, doesn’t work, because without considering painful memories or worrying about the future, you feel bad at this very moment.

Here are a few tips that will help you at even the worst times, one baby step after the next:

  • Force yourself to smile, even if you don’t feel it. Do that for 20 seconds. Your brain doesn’t differentiate between a forced smile and a heartfelt one. A forced smile encourages a nearly identical reaction to a genuine smile.
  • Think of a person you love. If you don’t have anyone you love in your life right now, think of someone you loved or a situation (such as a vacation) where you have been happy.
  • After these two simple steps, you’ll be able to write a list of 5 things you are grateful for.
  • Use the Sedona method to remove unhelpful negative emotions. See HERE. It’s a simple and powerful method that helps you to manage anger, fear, worry, and other feelings that do not serve you at that moment.
  • If the sum of your problems is overwhelming, split them up into simple, easily doable tasks. None should take longer than two to five minutes. That way, you create quick successes, and your brain will reward you.
  • Check your resources. Is there a resource or person who might offer help that you did not consult yet?
  • Take a break. Often, a break allows your brain to come up with solutions you might not have thought about.
  • Put things into perspective. There's hardly anything in your life that's critical to your survival. You need to eat, sleep, breathe and drink. That's pretty much it.

Hopefully, these tips work for you, even in the darkest hour.

Here's a song that I find awkwardly calming: