How To Get Rid Of Negative Thought Patterns


Habits and thought patterns (including prejudice and preconceptions) are really handy and give you a sense of safety. A false safety though because they are harmful to us and to others.

Unfortunately negative thought patterns are very common and mass media, focusing on bad news and gossip, play an important role in forming them.

“Not Me”

A particular form of negative thought patterns is thinking badly of oneself. This can originate from a number of causes, such as poor self-esteem, trying to adjust to social conventions, making oneself interesting to others, and so on. It is therefore important to identify the cause of your negative thought patterns as soon as possible and release it.

Recipes For Failure

The following are “recipes” to ensure failure:

  • “It cannot work!
  • “I told you it would end up badly”
  • “I’m afraid that….”
  • “It serves him/her right”
  • “This is illogical”
  • “This is the right way to do it”
  • “It’s a waste of time”
  • “This is not my field”
  • “Everybody knows that”
  • “Today is a bad day”
  • “It will always be like that”
  • “People don’t change”
  • “I’m sure he/she will say no”
  • “Today he/she is in a bad mood”
  • “If you really loved me…”

If you decide you will “never think something again”, you will certainly go on thinking about it continuously.

Ignore Negative Thoughts

A key strategy, however,  is paying no attention to those thoughts or being humorous about them. What you need to pay attention to is the quality of your thoughts: whenever a negative thought crosses your mind (your own thought or somebody else’s thought) simply acknowledge it is there and “tell” it that you don’t need it and release it with love. Yes, with love: don’t feel guilty because you let that thought cross your mind. Getting rid of your negative thought patterns is a process that takes time. So be patient as you go by, and “pat” yourself whenever you spot a new “weed” in your mind.

Learning To “Unlearn”

Remember that we learn to think since the early days of our life and you can always “unlearn” what you have learnt and that is harmful to you. It happens with many other things such as manual skills, things you have studied at school, foreign languages: if you don’t practice them, you forget about them, you “unlearn” them. The same applies to our thoughts: if you don’t indulge in the company of negative thoughts, if you let them go, you will forget to think about them.

Replacing Negative Thought Patterns

The #1 way of getting rid of negative thoughts is to replace them with new, positive thoughts. Whenever you realize you are thinking negatively, try to rephrase your thought and create a positive image.

Here are some examples:

  • If you think you will not be able to complete a task on time, you can think. “I haven’t got much time, so I need to plan my time immediately”
  • If you are planning a trip and somebody says:”I’m sure it will rain”, you may reply: “You never know. Weather forecasts are wrong sometimes. However, we could make an alternative plan in case it does rain”.
  • And if you have or you plan to have your home-based business and somebody tells you: “You will never be successful”, you can ask exactly why you shouldn’t. Don’t start an argument trying to convince the other person: simply listen to what the other person says and see whether you have not taken into account his/her reasons and maybe adjust your business plan/strategy accordingly. You could also work out alternative plans/strategies and test them to see which one is more successful.

You are the only one who controls your thoughts: you can choose the ones that make you feel well and live the life you want.

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To your prosperous thoughts

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7 thoughts on “How To Get Rid Of Negative Thought Patterns”

  1. Hey Paola
    I am working with some people right now that are real “negative nelly’s”. This post is packed full of valuable info, I think I’ll forward them over to your site for a read!
    I agree with you about making a conscious decision to NOT think about something, it is far better to make the conscious decision to just think positive about it. It takes far more energy to be negative about a situation than it is to be positive about it!
    cheers ~ Nat

    • You know Nat, one day I had a very eye-opening experience and realized the I was my own enemy! It was only me who was preventing myself from attaining what I really wanted in my life. And I was doing that because of my negative thoughts. Now I’m paying very close attention to the words I use in my thought, the words I speak to people and whenever I realize that I’m being negative, I take a step back and consciously rephrase my thought or sentence.
      And you know what?….My life is changing!


  2. Hi Paola! Thank you for sharing a very valuable lesson to all of us! Sometimes it can be hard to be positive around so many negative people, but your right, when you control your own thoughts it makes it much better for us! 🙂

  3. I’m proud to say that I can solve a problem no matter how hard it is. However, as I grew older, I find it very difficult to handle the real life situation I have right now. That’s why there are so many negative thoughts that bother me most of the time. I think the most important thing that I must do is to believe in myself, to be confident ! Also, to consider that these problems will help me improve myself to be a better person.

  4. If people really understood how violent (damaging) negative thoughts are to themselves and to others they would be vigilant about doing the work required to replace that kind of thinking.

    I appreciate that you said negative thinking takes time to overcome because it’s not as easy as I hear some people claim, and the ego is good at strategizing and self-protection.

    The key is to be compassionate with yourself, and with others, and to keep up the good work! I like your suggestion of adding humor into the mix. Laughter is always the best medicine and like my father used to say, “If you can’t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?”

    • I does take time to change anything you want to change. It takes time because you need to learn a different habit and old, deeply rooted habits need to be gradually removed, otherwise they settle in again.
      It is also so important to not take things too seriously: if you see the funny side of something is like seeing the glass half full!
      Thanks Connie for your comment!


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