Mental Health,  Personal Growth

How To Overcome Negative Thoughts

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Want to overcome negative thoughts?

It all starts with a small thing. You may be worrying over and over about whether you can make it on time for your job interview. Then you start thinking that you may not be able to make it on time.

Then minutes later, you look at your watch and thought maybe you can make it. However, a couple of seconds or minutes later, you start to feel doubt and thought that maybe you can make it on time but what if you can’t answer the job interview questions. 

You are still on your way to the office but you are now worried about what you will do now if you can’t pass the job interview. You then start to think about your future if you can get your dream job. You know that having this dream job can allow you to be true to yourself because you know that this can make you feel happy and fulfilled.

You know that your dream job will never hinder your life and it perfectly support your family. Then, you started to think that if you can’t get your dream job, you won’t be able to support your family and you won’t feel this sense of completion.

Do you have this too?

You started to feel stressed and worried but you still think about the what-if scenarios as you are on your way to your job interview. Is this you? Do you ever find your mind heavily clouded with these negative thoughts? I’m sure you all have these thoughts too, right?! It starts with a small thought then it grew and branched out into your mind.

About This Kind of Thinking…

This is what we call negative thinking. It is a process of your thoughts where you tend to find the worst in everything, even the little things by seeing the worst possible scenarios.

When you constantly think about negative thoughts, you feel stressed, worried and overwhelmed over time. You tend to tell everyone what they need to do in their lives when you never realized that it’s you who needs to do something in your life. You told someone you need to get a new job but it’s actually you who needs to get a new job.

You will always imagine and assume that everything will go wrong. When someone criticizes or makes silly fun jokes about you, you tend to start thinking that their jokes are rude. You become overly sensitive and defensive.

The problem with living in the modern world, particularly the media, you will see negative news, hear it on live television or even read it in newspapers. This feeds your mind with tons of information which are mostly about disasters, catastrophes, and other unhappy events.

This will slowly sink into your subconscious mind and then this somehow forms a habit of negative thinking. So how do you overcome your negative thoughts while living in the modern world?

How to overcome negative thoughts

You might think that one way to overcome negative thoughts is to be positive and stay positive. It’s easy to say but it’s difficult to act. Forcing yourself to be positive can be the least efficient way to be positive.

You might also think that about something that’s good about you. Again, it’s easier said than done. It’s hard to focus on the good when everything around is getting worse. Not everyone walks the same journey. You and I are different. I struggled with horrible thoughts too when I suffered from depression and anxiety.

Life can be filled with both good and bad things. The more you think about the bad things, you will tend to feel and think negatively. If you want to minimize your negative thinking, here are 4 things you can overcome negative thoughts.

1.) Identify your negative thoughts.

Take a step back and observe your thoughts. Take note when your negative thoughts arise.

Does it arise when you fall short of your expectations, such as when you lost your job, you feel like you are a loser and hopeless in finding another one?

Do you make wide assumptions based on an incident that happened just once but you assumed that it will likely happen again, such as you will never find another university after receiving one rejection letter?

Do you take things too personal that is outside your control such as saying things to yourself that you should have done everything you could to help your sibling after learning that they have failed their exams?

Do you expect any worst-case scenario such as when your screwed up just a small thing at work and you assume that your boss will fire you immediately?

If you were able to identify when your negative thoughts arise, then you can now change your thinking pattern. Instead of taking things too personal that is outside your control, you must understand how other people behave is out of your control. It’s their responsibility.

Instead of falling short of expectations, just acknowledge it and learn about how you will be able to achieve the goal. Simply train your mind to embrace earning the outcomes you desired the most or at least you really want.

2.) Challenge your thoughts.

It’s normal to feel down especially if your head is filled with negative thoughts. One way to challenge your thoughts is by testing and validating your thoughts. Ask yourself if these thoughts are true or accurate. Are there any evidence or facts that can support those thoughts? Is your way of thinking help you to achieve your goals?

3.) Replace negative thoughts.

You can replace these negative thoughts with helpful statements. Never push your real thoughts, emotions or feelings away or become too positive to the point that you will ignore your true thoughts.

Whenever a negative thought pops out, you then replace it with a helpful statement. For example, when you think you are a loser for failing a match or challenge, you then tell yourself that it’s okay to fail today because you will learn from that experience and try again. Replacing negative thoughts is a bit much like you are comforting a small child.

4.) Practice Positive Affirmations.

You don’t force yourself to be positive. Don’t expect to be positive instantly with affirmations. However, you can control your own thoughts. You’re the only one who can control your own thoughts.

Your own thoughts can be a powerful tool to help you will all the aspects of your life. Everything you think and say to yourself is taken and processed to your brain and then it proceeds to take action so your thought would become a reality.

Every morning, start looking yourself in the mirror and start practicing saying positive affirmations. These affirmations should help develop a new set of beliefs and may even help you change your bad habits into good ones.

Recommended Post: Here are 50 Daily Positive Affirmations You Can Practice Now


You don’t need to live a life filled with negative thoughts. This drains your energy and wastes your time. It also brings down other people instead of feeling and thinking about the good things in life. Though it may take time, consistency and commitment to overcome these thoughts, it’s going to help you see the positive things around you.

I know how hard it is to be positive and feel positive because you and I don’t share the same journey. We both don’t walk the same path. You don’t need to be too optimistic. It’s normal to have negative thoughts. You just need to overcome some excessive negative thoughts so you can slowly start to see that there are things that you should be grateful for.

You will slowly start to notice amazing things and changes all around you. You will begin to feel lighter and happier each day. You will also begin to see the good in others and this can help improve your life.

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Eleanor Wabe is the creator behind The Eleanor Journal, a digital platform of stories about personal growth, mental health, self-improvement, spiritual growth & self-care to help uplift your body, mind, soul, and heart.

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