One of the most difficult aspects in developing a personal development program is defeating the negativity in our thoughts. Often, our biggest enemy is ourselves, with constant thoughts of “I can’t do that” or “I will never be successful.” Negative thoughts often manifest themselves into actual events, which is why addressing our negativity is crucial to creating a successful personal development program.
Negative Thoughts are Often Irrational
Mark Twain once said “I have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.” This is true of many of the negative thoughts that swirl around in our heads. We often focus on the “what ifs” as though they are actually occurring, when, quite often, our thoughts of the worst outcome rarely ever come to fruition. Once you realize that your negative thoughts are just that— thoughts—and that although there may be some validity to what you think may happen, chances are the worst will not come true, and you will actually succeed at the task at hand.
Negativity Breeds Anxiety
When you constantly focus on negative thoughts, anxiety, inadequacy and uncertainty begin to be a constant in your life. Begin to recognize how you feel when you have certain thoughts. Often, negative thoughts cause a physical reaction, such as butterflies in the stomach, nausea and an increased heart rate as one negative thought builds upon another. For example, let’s say you are asked to present a crucial report to the CEO of your company. You first reaction may be “I am going to make a complete and total mess of this.” That thought leads to “What if I don’t get the facts right?” and that could lead to “I am going to lose my job if I mess this up.” Your hands get sweaty and your heart races. It is difficult to concentrate on other tasks because of your focus on what may go wrong with this presentation. As part of your personal growth, instead of focusing on what could go wrong, focus instead on how your presentation could benefit both you and the company, and understand that even if you do make a mistake, the world is not going to end.
Challenge Negative Thoughts
Instead of focusing on the negative, stop and analyze those negative thoughts as part of your personal development program. Identify the situation that brought on the emotions related to negativity, and then identify your thoughts and beliefs about the situation that caused those emotions. Replace those thoughts and beliefs with positive statements that are probably more accurate than the negative thoughts.
Surround Yourself with Positives
As you begin to focus on those positive thoughts and beliefs through your personal growth development, you may find that your personality also may undergo some changes. You may find that you pursue more positive activities or surround yourself with more positive people. As you begin to focus on the positives, negative thoughts will slowly recede and you will become more confident and successful.
By adding a more optimistic attitude as part of your personal development program, you can achieve more and attain the goals you set for yourself. With an on-demand personal development training library of over 300 programs, TSTN features some of the top motivational experts in the self-improvement industry. The Success Training Network provides information on personal development plans at your convenience, so watch Charlie “Tremendous” Jones’ “Personal Development Training” to get a taste of what we offer. Also, learn more about us at TSTN’s website, or visit us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.