Sometimes we lose control of our minds and as a result our mind will go down paths that sometimes are just plain wrong or unhealthy. We get myopically focused on our own internal problems, through our own lens and lose perspective. Everyone can develop obvious bad habits (aka smoking) but the really bad habits are much harder to notice. A few examples of horrible mental habits –
- Excessive rumination – spending a lot of time thinking about something negative, even though you do not want to .
- Allowing ourselves to think we cannot control impulses
- Over simplifying or generalizing an entire situation on one bad example – “everyone hates me.”
- Taking everything that happens very personally. “She said that because she thinks I am…”
- Taking a leap frog jump into predicting the inevitable future – you become Nostradamus – “well I guess I am not going to be successful now, might as well give up.”
- A close cousin to that is the huge sweeping negative thought – “I am just never going to get a job because I am too old”
Of course we have the other really common bad thinking. I will just eat this plate of chocolate chip cookies and TOMORROW I will start eating healthy. Funny, you might have been saying that for 10 years now.
The problem with this type of negative mental thought processes is that they not only control you, they become self evident to others around you. By acting this emotion out frequently, it starts to come out in your interaction with others and pretty soon they start TREATING you just like you think of yourself. As a consequence you have self fulfilled your own prophecy. People ultimately treat you the way you view yourself. Not all the time and not immediately, but eventually what others perceive of you and what you perceive of yourself will become reality.
So the trick is to catch when you are thinking this way and INTERRUPT yourself. Do something different at the first sign of this negative thought popping up. Take a walk or something, go outside, anything but thinking negatively. You may want to create an emergency procedure to get out of the mental process quick whenever it pops up again.