I never cease to be amazed about the power of thought, this simple technique can take you from a spiral of negativity and unleash tremendous desires to take action.
It would be nice to say that I only have thoughts of supreme positivity and my business is always steaming ahead irrespective of external conditions or internal challenges but that's not the case.
The phrase “analysis paralysis” comes to mind. It's the time when you think too hard, get bogged down in why things won't work to a point where you are sitting there thinking “I really don't know what to do next”. It happens every now and then and I'm not ashamed to admit it.....because recognition of the situation is the start of the cure.
In a recent conversation with my coach I particularly wanted to work a way out of this cycle and he suggested the following approach. It worked for me so try and follow it through yourself and see how it works for you.
First my coach asked me to bring one of these negative thoughts to the front of my mind and think about it for 10 seconds.
Second he asked me to think about that same thought but preface the thought with “I'm having the thought that..............”. The interesting thing was that immediately my negativity appear to be more distant, in a place where I could work on it rather than be in it.
My coach's third suggestion was to continue with the thought and this time preface it with “I notice that I'm having the thought that..........”. This time my thought was even more removed from me not only making it something I could work on but more to the point, so distant that it almost started to feel trivial, something that I could dismiss and move on.
Have you tried to follow the process above with one of your own thoughts? How powerful is that? This is certainly something that I'm going to take away and get good use from.
Simply by addressing the thought from a different angle, my mind can view it in a completely different way and to finish off this point about the power of thought my coach asked me to think about my thought from two more angles that you might like to try:-
Sing your thought to the tune of “Happy Birthday to you”. How does that make your negative thought appear? For me, I could visualize this negative thought in a much happier and jovial place. When I tried this technique out on Louise (owner of this website) she remarked that her thought seemed more ridiculous.
The final technique that my coach used to demonstrate the power of thought was to ask me for my favorite sport and then within that sport, for my favorite commentator. (You can also use your favorite cartoon character if sport is not your thing). Now ask yourself “what would your commentator / cartoon character say about the negative thought that you are having?”
For me the answer was to stop messing about and get on with it!
This is such a simple technique that quickly uses the power of thought (your own thought) to take you from a position of negativity and stagnation to one of positivity where you have the desire to take action. It really has worked well for me and I now use it frequently. Of course, as I said at the top, the challenge is to recognise when you are in that spiral of negativity and that has to come from yourself.
Written by Blackburn business mentoring and coaching provider, Paul Yates