It seems like it all began before I even got out of bed this morning. I sensed I was not starting on a good foot. I couldn’t seem to stop myself. Sure enough, with each person I encountered I found myself getting more and more irritated and that little furrow in my brow was deepening (not good).

After about 4 hours of muttering to myself about how annoying other people were being – I got tired of myself and decided to really look. The problem was not out there with everyone else and what they were or weren’t doing. It wasn’t because they were all jerks doing incredibly stupid, thoughtless things.

I was annoyed because I didn’t like the emotions these various interactions were stirring up in me.
Period.

And the emotions were all coming from my thinking:
“Why doesn’t she get out and meet more people, and stop leaning on me?” (annoyance)
“I should drop what I’m doing and help her” (shame)
“Why is this taking me so long to figure out?” (shame)
“She talks too much” (resentment)
“Maybe they’re not picking up my calls because they don’t like me” (sadness)
“I might as well quite right now; it’s never going to work” (sadness, gloom)
And on and on and on.

No wonder I had that little furrow in my brow. Then I thought:

“If it really is just my thoughts that are causing me to be upset, and not all those other people, I
should be able to make myself feel better, right? All I have to do is change my thinking, and I will
be free”.

Easier said than done…

Do you ever find yourself in situations like this? In theory, it does sound easy. However, in practice – well, that’s another thing all together. And sometimes a little information can just make things worse ((I already know this, so why can’t I seem to fix myself?). But there are some simple things that we can do –

5 powerful questions to challenge your negative thoughts

Think about one judgement you’ve had about someone recently, write it down, and then ask yourself the following:

  • Is it really true that they are that way?
    • Does thinking this way help me live my best life?
      • What’s the impact on me when I have these negative thoughts?
        • What does it say about ME – what kind of person would be around someone like that?
          • Is this really the way I want to think about myself?

            3 steps to empower yourself

            Once you characterize someone as being a particular way, that’s how you will always experience them. These steps will provide you with another way to think.

            1.Ask yourself:

            • How do I want to experience them?
              • How will viewing them this way change my relationship?
                • How will seeing them this way support how I feel about myself?

                  2. Notice when you start to have less than uplifting thoughts about someone

                  3. Write down:

                  • Precisely what I am thinking is
                    • What I want to believe about this person is
                      • What I am going to do NOW to improve my relationships

                        Remember – it can be as simple as changing your thinking.

                        happiness is an inside job

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