When we talk about ways to manage depression and anxiety, one of the things we often hear recommended is positive thinking. When we are feeling like things are absolutely hopeless, it’s very hard to make ourselves think happy thoughts. How do we change our thinking to be more positive? We have the power to change the course of our thoughts, and therefore our energy. We have more control over our moods than we think we do.
Start to pay more attention to your thoughts. Practice observing them. Become more conscious of the thoughts that are bringing you down, causing you anxiety and making you sad. As we dwell on these thoughts, they become our default thought patterns. They are often self-destructive in nature and can have a serious impact on our mental health.
Start to imagine what it would feel like to be free from those thoughts. Take the issues at hand and come up with positive counterparts to them. “I am depressed” could be transformed to “I am healing. I am working through challenges. I am getting stronger every day.”
“I am an addict” can be transformed to “I can create a new life for myself. I am strong. I choose what’s best for me.”
As you create these transformational, affirmative statements, put your energy behind the words while repeating them, and try to feel them as though they are real. You are creating new positive thought patterns, and as you continue to focus on them, they begin to replace the old, negative ones. You are reprogramming your subconscious mind to default to these patterns instead.
Over time, with practice, these thoughts become second nature. When we have moments of fear, anxiety or sadness, our minds become more resilient and respond with self-loving, self-affirming thoughts. We start to believe in ourselves more and mentally build ourselves up more often.
Positive thinking is often dismissed as being too simple to be effective, especially for serious depression. Working to transform our thoughts, by way of repeating affirmations, writing in a journal, creative writing, etc., is one part of the healing process. We can’t expect affirmations alone to completely heal our deep-rooted fears and traumas, but they are a powerful tool we can use to help ourselves. Healing is a lifelong process, and we can really help ourselves by working to have more control over the direction of our thoughts.
Treatment at Enlightened Solutions includes therapy, mentoring and recovery planning. Call (833) 801-LIVE for more information.