Are You A Negative Thinker?
“She thought I was hilarious! In a way, I was almost too good. I started so good I can’t go any place but down now.” – George Costanza
We’ve all been there.
Something great or exciting takes place.
But instead of revelling in the experience or opportunity, we switch focus to all the bad stuff that could happen.
We Have A Negativity Bias
Neuroscientists call this habit “negativity bias”, and it stems from our caveman days.
It helped keep us alive when we were out hunting with spears.
These days, it leaves us reacting to a harsh email, phone call or difficult conversation as though our life is in danger.
Our brain is like Velcro for negative experiences and like Teflon for positive ones.
3 Steps To Overcome Your Own Negativity Bias
So how to reverse this?
Here’s a 3 step process that may do the trick:
1. Observe Yourself
Catch yourself when you slip into self-doubt, anxiety or fear. Notice when you’re catastrophising and seeing only worst case scenarios.
2. Switch Focus
Think of something you’re grateful for right now. Your kids, your home, your health etc.
A few seconds can be all it takes to shift your attention to more positive things and drown out the negative thoughts.
3. Make It A Habit
Take just 15 seconds every day, and focus your attention on these positive aspects of your life.
The aim is to get you out of the habit of overlooking the positive, and shift your brain’s response to all the good stuff from Teflon to Velcro.
The moment you make this shift you will remember your purpose, look forward to new challenges and face life with renewed optimism.
Try it once a day for a week and see what happens…