Whether you realize it or not, the negative experiences you have lived through often influence your decisions. Your brain learns from difficult situations and painful memories, and these experiences get sealed into your brain.
Your brain naturally wants to do whatever it can to protect you by avoiding a recurrence of the negative experience. However, continually focusing on the negative can hinder our ability to find the positive and live a happy life.
Success is based on recognizing and going after opportunities as they present themselves — and that often requires having the inner fortitude to take a chance and navigate difficult waters. The more you exude positivity, the better your chances of finding lasting success and happiness. All it takes is a little training and focus, and you can rewire your brain toward the positive.
1. Release your inner negativity.
If you allow yourself to dwell on the negative, then habitual skepticism will run your life and influence your decisions. You are effectively resigning yourself to a cycle of hesitation and distrust. It is hard, if not impossible, to build success when you have resigned yourself to negativity.
The first step is to let your negativity go. It’s time to focus on the affirmative. Take control of your mind and direct it toward the positive. You can start doing this by deliberately and frequently centering your thoughts on things that make you happy. Stop letting negatives limit your potential and drag you down.
Start consciously taking a different approach to your thinking. One simple tip is to spend a moment calming your mind when you are feeling frazzled, stressed or distracted. Slow things down. Take a few deep breaths and empty your mind of negative thoughts. Focus on filling your lungs with air. Now you are ready for a positive reboot.
2. Retrain your brain to flip negatives into positives.
Even after years of subconsciously focusing on the negative, it is possible to retrain your brain to perceive and focus on the positive. The idea is to recognize and center your thoughts on the silver linings that are embedded in any negative situation.
The first step is to become aware of your thinking patterns. Start paying more attention to the flow of your thoughts. Is your brain preoccupied by constantly focusing on negative outcomes? Are you stuck in a loop of cynical thinking? Recognize that negative thinking isn’t going to support you in creating long-term success. You need a balanced mind as you decide on which opportunities are the best to take.
The next step is to retrain your brain to see positive patterns. Instead of scrutinizing a situation to spot the negatives, we need to teach our brains to redirect our thoughts and scan for the positives.
One simple way to begin doing this is to scan for three daily positive things. Every day, make a list of three good things that happened to you and reflect on what caused them to happen. Focus on the little wins you have each day and use those to empower and motivate yourself.
3. Learn the art of pivoting from negative thoughts.
Once you recognize that you are caught in a continuous loop of negative reoccurring thoughts, it’s time to break free by pivoting.