Message from the universe 28-01-15:

“Some people say life is hard. It is not.

Some people say life is easy. It is not.

Some people say life is lonely, tricky or a test. It is not.

Life is a reflection of whatever you say.

Oh, do say happy, lovely, rich things. Pass it on.”

So, here I am passing it on…..

I guess the truth is, we can get into a habit of negative thinking. You may become more aware of this through counselling. Before you start to beat get yourself up for it, perhaps there is a logic behind this kind of thinking: ‘If I expect the worst outcome, I will be ready for it when it happens’. In reality, it has the effect of making us increasingly pessimistic and miserable and becomes a self-defeating  trap.

Here are some of the thoughts I have, on occasions, shared with counselling clients on how to reverse this trend and become more positive and optimistic about life:

At a regular time each day, write down at a least 5 things you are grateful for.

Write down 5 things that have gone well today.

Every time you think of something negative about another person, identify two positives things about them. (Remember that no-one is either good or bad, we are all a mixture).
In the same way, recognise when you are thinking negative things about yourself  and challenge yourself to think of two positives.
Make a list of everything that has turned out better than you hoped it would.

Try to notice and appreciate the small details in life like the beauty of frost on glass or the luxury of a hot shower and a fluffy towel, small acts of random kindness like someone holding a door open for you or letting you into a queue of traffic when it’s their right of way. Find a way of thanking them.

Although she could be naively annoying at times and way too saccharine sweet for some of us, maybe Pollianna had a point when she said:

If you have any further helpful ideas, I’d love to hear from you on this topic.

A word of caution though!

Somtimes we can use positivity as a mask to hide emotional pain from ourselves and others in the same way as we can use drink or other addictive behaviours to avoid facing up to something that deeply troubles us. While this may work in the short-term, it is important that we work through whatever is causing us pain in order to feel peaceful and comfortable with life.

If you recognise you are doing this or have unresolved issues that cause you to feel prolonged recurring anxiety or depression that won’t go away, please feel free to book a counselling session. Through counselling, we can explore this together and work towards helping you to come to terms with whatever is troubling you and to move forward with your life.