Reprogram Your Mind and Break the Cycle of Negative Thinking

“We are the sum total of our experiences. Those experiences – be they positive or negative – make us the person we are, at any given point in our lives.” ~ B.J. Neblett

“I can’t travel by bus, I feel nauseous,” explained our 13-year-old son, who cringed at the idea of travelling by bus for a short holiday. We so often restrain from doing things due to a bad experience or multiple experiences in the past or a belief. We place ourselves in an imaginary box of limitation, and its only purpose is to prevent us from either getting hurt or to stay comfortable, but we end up stagnating.

How many times has this happened to you that you have stopped yourself from a certain kind of experience because of an attached belief tied to a previous experience?

The stronger you feel an emotion like in the above case is fear of throwing up and discomfort, which triggers the corresponding thought which is “I cannot travel by bus and I feel uneasy on windy roads,” the more likely it registers in the subconscious mind. Over time, it becomes part of our BIOS, and turns into an automatic response. When such narratives are spoken, it evokes a certain emotion that conditions our brain and body into that belief. 

What your mind is doing is creating a fixed pattern of responding to a certain event or situation. If that event arises again, your response is usually the same. From the above example – our son used to get sick on winding roads, it happened to him 2–3 times in his younger days when he brought up, and since then every time he travels on a mountain or winding roads, he would say, “Oh, I am going to feel like puking again, I should eat less, etc.” 

I had to talk with him and make him realize that it doesn’t happen all the time. I asked him not to think about it, not to trigger those thoughts associated with a certain kind of experience, and convinced him that he will be okay. In case he feels a slight discomfort, he can close his eyes and avoid looking at the road. 

He did that a few times, and it worked. He didn’t feel nauseous and stopped telling and recollecting the same story of himself. It is easier to change a behavioural pattern at a younger age, because the brain is still receptive to change.   

This is just a small example from my daily life, this way each one of us have made ourselves believe or rather have conditioned to falsely protect ourselves from having a different experience. 

Living in a loop

Emotions are a record of the past, and if those emotions are driving the present, you’re living in the past. We get caught up in the repetition of thinking and feeling and feeling and thinking. Our body acts on the unconscious mind that is living in the past. The body loves the same suffering, loves the same pain, it loves the same unworthiness, 

We live much of our life in a repeating cycle of thoughts and feelings. 

As a child, I was brought up in a very insecure environment, there were always thoughts of not being good enough and worthy of love, coming from school and not-so conducive home environment. I felt victimized by the conditions in my life. 

Reprogram Your Mind And Break The Pattern Of Negative Thinking | Dr. Joe Dispenza | Master Your Life

I started to feel the way I was thinking (which was negative), leading to more feelings of insecurity. Any incident that didn’t go the way I expected, would just reaffirm the negative feelings of insecurity and unworthiness. Negative thinking can easily become habitual when it persists for a long period of time, it gets ingrained in our subconscious mind. 

Long term memories create highly emotional experiences. You feel chemically within the boundaries of that emotion, if we keep experiencing the same emotional reaction for a long time it becomes part of your personality. 

Joe Dispenza explained, “But what if you actually thought there was a possibility that you could get better, and you really become consciously aware of that thought? If you became aware of how you speak, if you paid more attention to how you act, and if you fully recognized the feeling of desperation that’s associated with how you think, act, and feel — then maybe you could start thinking that you actually can learn.”

Time for an intervention

To change this negative way of thinking is to become aware of our thought processes and patterns, and then choose to make a different choice. Through contemplation and self reflection, we can become aware of our unconscious script. When we keep doing it with attention and intention, it becomes the new voice in our head. It’s like the brain gets a new software program, and we become in control of our own brain. 

The moment we decide to make a different choice, things begin to change, albeit with discomfort, but that’s where the magic lies!

For me to overcome my childhood insecurity was a gradual and a long process – I started focusing on doing Yoga, Meditation, writing for Fractal Enlightenment (yes, I find that extremely healing), spending a lot of time in nature which was my safe space, and being mindful of my thoughts and developing self-compassion.

This way I gained confidence in my own self, and it’s still in the process. Sometimes, healing takes longer when the emotions are deep-rooted, but we have to take the first step.    

"RELAX AND TRUST. EXPECT IT THE SAME DAY" - Dr Joe Dispenza Best Meditational Speech

Here are 3 ways to rewrite your thoughts and change the old ways of thinking

Thoughtfully changing thoughts 

We know the power of our thoughts, it has the potential to change the chemical makeup of the brain. Negative self-talk leads to cognitive distortion. If we press the pause button and thoughtfully change our thoughts, then slowly things begin to change.   

Choose to think about high points of the day, remind ourselves daily of our successes, and how we have grown over the years, helps in changing the narrative. Talk to yourself like you would talk to your friend. 

Constructively edit memories

We often think memories are accurate records of our experiences, they are often distorted and biased. Memories change every time we reflect, we alter them. This can be disconcerting, but we can create beneficial stories for ourselves. 

Replacing it with positive memories, learning something, thinking of the good times, will help have less pain and anger. We can edit our memories to create a more supportive mental scrapbook.  

Deliberately choose forgiveness

It is another powerful way to take control of our brains. When someone hurts us we feel hurt, and our responses generally revolve around flight, fight and freeze. There is a cascade of stress chemicals that negatively impact our creativity and problem-solving. We hold on to that hurt and harbor a grudge. Our stress hormone, cortisol, can cause our brain to atrophy, making us vulnerable to more hurt. 

When we consciously develop forgiveness and compassion, we are shifting to a positive mindset, which helps our growth and emotional well-being.   

So thoughts create feelings, feelings create behaviour and behavior reinforces the same thoughts, it is an endless cycle that determines our life. 

Summing it up, Dispenza said, “It’s a simple formula: A new thought (I can learn) leads to a new choice (I make the time to learn), which endorses a new action (I sit with myself and make the effort to learn something), which will create a new experience (I share the information with my family and friends), which will lead to a new feeling (confidence or satisfaction).”

Positive thinking is a skill, and a habit we must cultivate to change our lives. 

Resources

How Your Thinking Affects Your Brain Chemistry
How our thoughts can affect our mental health

Please share, it really helps! :) <3

Bhavika
Bhavikahttps://fractalenlightenment.com/
Bhavika is a nature-lover, aspiring yogini, traveler and co-founder of Fractal Enlightenment, who strives to help fellow beings reconnect with nature and their true selves. Thank you for being part of this journey.

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