12 Ways to Avoid Unhelpful Thinking Habits

12 Ways to Avoid Unhelpful Thinking Habits
Those annoying unhelpful thinking habits that we all have from time to time can be a real pain in the butt, and they never seem to be far away either.

They hide just around the corner and pop up when we least expect, reaching out and touching us on the shoulder, reminding us of impending doom or our feelings of inadequacy.

It’s good to remember that they are just thoughts. They’re created in that electric charged jelly-like thing that resides inside our skulls. They’re fleeting, transient and they’re not actually real. We only manifest them.

Nonetheless they can hold a powerful grip on us and our actions and they can be quite disconcerting.

What we must do is realise that we don’t have to surrender to them, or let them control us. We can take charge and rephrase them when they do arrive, it's the power of positive thinking.

Here’s a list of 12 common unhelpful thinking habits and a few positive pointers beneath each to make you think differently about them instead.

1. Mental Filter

When we notice only what the filter allows or wants us to see. We dismiss anything that doesn’t ‘fit’. It’s like looking through dark blinkers or gloomy specs, only catching the negative stuff, while anything more positive or realistic is simply disregarded.

Ask yourself: Am I only noticing the bad? Am I filtering out the positives? What would be more realistic? Or, can I simply be more optimistic?

2. Judgements

Making evaluations or judgements about events, ourselves, others or the world in general rather than describing what we actually see and have evidence for.

Think instead: I’m making an evaluation about the situation or person. It’s how I make sense of the world, but that doesn’t mean my judgements are always right or helpful. Is there another perspective?

3. Prediction

Believing we know what’s going to happen in the future. That’s one of my favourites, suddenly, we have magic powers and can predict all future outcomes. We clearly can’t!

Take pause: Am I thinking that I can predict the future? How likely is it that might really happen?

4. Emotional Reasoning

I feel bad so it must be bad. I feel anxious so I must be in danger, that sort of thing. It’s the natural fight or flight reflex we’ve inherited from our ancestors which was useful to them when they lived in a world of different dangers, like being prey to wild animals or at risk of attack from barbarians. In the modern world, this reflex can be quite unhelpful, not to mention exhausting.

Think: My feelings are just a reaction to my thoughts, and thoughts are just automatic brain reflexes.

5. Mind-reading

Another classic, it goes hand in hand with predicting the future. We are telepathic and can read everybody else’s minds; it’s another super power straight out of X-Men! It’s not the same as empathising with another human being as that is a useful skill, it’s assuming we know what others are thinking (usually something negative about us).

Rephrase: Am I assuming I know what others are thinking? What’s the evidence? These are my own thoughts, not theirs. Is there another, more balanced way of looking at it?

6. Mountains and Molehills

Why do we do it to ourselves? The world is going to end because I’m running late for a meeting, I fell out with my brother so he’s never going to speak to me again, or my child misbehaved again so now she’s going to turn out to be a criminal.

It’s basically exaggerating the risk of danger or the negatives. Minimising the odds of how things are most likely to turn out, or reducing the awareness of positives.

Take a fresh look: Am I exaggerating the bad stuff? How would someone else see it? What’s the bigger picture?

7. Compare and Despair

Seeing only the good and positive aspects in others and getting upset when comparing ourselves negatively against them. This is completely counterproductive! You’re unique and have your own gifts, comparing yourself to others is as pointless as comparing apples to bananas.

Step back: Am I doing that ‘compare and despair’ thing again? What would be a more balanced and helpful way of looking at it? What are my gifts and strengths?

8. Catastrophising

Imagining and believing that the worst possible thing will happen. It’s quite an unrealistic place to be, and very unhelpful. Always believing the worst is disempowering too.

Think instead: What’s most likely to happen? And if the worst does really happen, can I cope and accept the consequences?

9. Critical Self

Putting ourselves down, self-criticism or blaming ourselves for events or situations that are not totally our fault or responsibility.

More helpful: Would most people who really know me say that about me? Is this something I’m truly at fault or responsible for? If not, park it. It’s out of your control.

10. Black and White Thinking

Believing that something or someone can only be good or bad, right or wrong rather than anything in between (as us complex, contradictory humans are).

Remind yourself: Things aren’t either totally black or totally white, there are shades of grey. Where is this on the spectrum?

11. Shoulds and Musts

Thinking or saying ‘I should’ (or shouldn’t) and ‘I must’ puts pressure on ourselves and sets up unrealistic expectations.

Take another view: Am I putting more pressure on myself or setting up expectations of myself that are impossible? What would be more realistic?

12. Memories

Current situations and events can trigger upsetting memories, leading us to believe that the danger is here and now rather than in the past, causing us distress in the present.

It’s better to realise: This is just a reminder of the past. That was then, this is now. Even though the memory makes me feel upset, it’s not actually happening again right now.

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How To Stop Negative Thinking (Video)

Watch this important video that will show you the hidden power of numerology in your life.
After watching the video, you will get the chance to download your very own customised numerology report.

5 Tips to Understanding Your Dreams

5 Tips to Understanding Your Dreams
Dreams can help you clarify your thoughts and emotions, help you solve problems and unlock your innermost thoughts and desires.

Many people are fascinated by dreams. I know I am so I wanted to find out more about them. I dream vividly most nights, I remember some of them come the morning but I know I’m forgetting lots of them too.

There are many different schools of thought as to what dreams’ purpose actually is. Scientists describe dreams as a mix of physiology, neurobiology, cognition and information processing.

On the other hand, some describe dreams as no more than a spontaneous, self-activation of the brain during sleep. So who is right?

What is Dream Interpretation?

If you’re a believer that dreams provide meaning and are not just random outcomes from a brain simply activating automatically during sleep, then dream interpretation is worth looking at.

  • Dream interpretation allows you to analyse and understand the hidden messages that your dreams are sending you.

  • Dream interpretation is all about taking the images and symbols you see in your dreams and finding meaning from them.

  • Some people see dreams as a version of precognition.

Different Types of Dreams

There are several types of dreams and ways of interpreting them, I have covered a few:

Lucid Dreams

Lucid dreaming is a state in which the dreamer is actually aware and conscious of the fact that he or she is dreaming. Most people have at least one experience in their life where they feel as if they are lucid dreaming.

Carl Jung and Jungian Dreaming

Carl Jung, a psychologist, initiated the concept of the collective unconscious. Jung saw dreams as more than just a personal message; he saw them as a universal message that might be communicated through archetypes or patterns of experience common to humanity.

Tibetan Dream Yoga

Tibetan Buddhism and Taoism see the world as no more than an illusion or a dream itself. They view the dream state as no more than another transitional state of illusion.

Five Ways to Carry Out Dream Interpretation

Do you find when you wake you can’t remember your dreams? It’s common to do this, sometimes the odd dream seems to stick and you remember it vividly for the rest of the day.

However we forget most of our dreams so I’ve put together some tips for not only remembering them but gaining some understanding about what they could mean:

  • Form a habit of recalling your dreams upon waking by keeping a dream journal. With practice, you will slowly train your brain to remember dreams easier.

  • Date your dream entries, and look for recurring patterns and symbols for greater understanding.

  • Tell yourself when you go to sleep that you will remember your dreams, and sooner or later, you will begin remembering them.

  • Use your dreams to solve problems by posing a question to yourself before going to sleep and asking your dreams to provide you an answer.

  • Use your dreams to heighten your creativity and imagination by using the symbols to help you create things. This might come in handy if you are an artist, a writer or even an engineer.

Dreams are often a gateway to those secrets held within, so cultivating an understanding will go a long way to discovering who you truly are deep down.

The Top 5 Most Common Dreams

What are the most common dreams? You’ll find they are consistent across humanity, here are the top 5:

1. The most common dream by far is the dream of being chased, which means that there is some issue you want to confront, but lack the confidence to do so.
2. The second most common dream is your teeth falling out, which might mean you are experiencing self-doubt.
3. The third most common dream is not being able to find the bathroom, which could mean that you are continually looking after the needs of others rather than yourself, ignoring your most basic needs.
4. Being naked in public comes next. Being naked might indicate that you feel vulnerable.
5. The fifth most popular dream is feeling unprepared for an exam, which could indicate you are judging yourself too much.

There are also dreams of flying and falling. Many people experience the dream of flying, which may mean you are freeing yourself from something that is holding you back. Flying can also be a sign that you feel in control or on top of a situation.

If you are falling, you may need to just relax and learn how to let go, or you may be experiencing bouts of insecurity.

Dreams Can Give Valuable Clues to Your Life

Dreams happen during REM or rapid eye movement sleep. In a typical night, you may dream for about two hours, broken up by the various stages of the sleep cycle.

Dreams may be the brain's way of consolidating memories using the sleep cycle to reorganise and review the day's events. Or they can provide deeper meaning to your life and your place in the world.

Recording your dreams upon waking can give you valuable clues to what your dreams are trying to tell you. In the end, dreams are a succession of images, ideas, emotions and sensations that occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep.

They can last anywhere from a few seconds to as long as 20 minutes. Recording and seeking to understand your dreams can go a long way to helping you better understand yourself.

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How to Ascend To Your Higher Self

higher self
Searching for Your Higher Self?
Your higher self is the essence of you. It is the real you or your total soul consciousness. It completes you and is in possession of your soul contract. It is like having access to your own instruction manual or help centre.

When you access your higher self, you can get the answers you need. You are always connected to your higher self, and you might think of it as your voice of reason.

She has all of the answers to all of the dilemmas and problems you experience in life. The higher self has a plan he or she is working off of, and if you can connect with your higher self, you can catch a glimpse of this plan.

Your higher self watches over you continually.

However, because you have free will, you often veer from this plan. When you find yourself off-track on the course of your life, your higher self can help redirect you.

What Is Your Higher Self?

  • The higher self may have orchestrated your parents’ connection or even planned some of the struggles you have experienced in this life.

  • It is like your intuition or your inner GPS system.

  • It is always available for you to access, but you may forget to use it.

4 Ways You Can You Connect to Your Higher Self

In essence, you are already connected to your higher self; you just don’t realise it. There are a myriad of ways you can connect to it, here are the 4 best ways:

  1. Try listening with your senses. Listen for little voices of intuition or reason. Try visually connecting with your higher self by imagining what he or she looks like. You could even imagine what his or her touch would feel like.

  2. Journaling; this is a great way to get in touch with your higher self. Simply ask yourself a question in your mind or write the question down and ask your higher self for the answer. You may receive flashes of insight or be guided to start writing something.

  3. Meditating is a great way to get in touch with your higher self because meditation allows your mind to slow down enough so that you can make this connection.

  4. Visualise – Imagine yourself walking in a beautiful garden or other relaxing place having a conversation with your higher self.

What Can My Higher Self Help Me With?

Your higher self may take many forms. He or she may look like an older, wiser version of you or he or she may look completely different.

There is no right or wrong appearance. But your higher self can help you with just about ANYTHING!

Anytime you feel like you have gotten off track, your higher self can help steer you in the right direction.

You may feel strange at first communicating with your higher self, but once you establish this connection, it can feel like a lifeline.

It's Up To You

Your higher self wants you to be happy and to feel connected. Your higher self is intimately aware of the lessons and goals you have come here to learn, and he or she will ultimately push you toward them.

Your higher self holds all of your secrets and strengths; all you need to do to access these is to reach out in faith.

You can establish a connection with your higher self by stating something simple like, “Higher self, please establish a connection with me; I will be open to whatever way you choose to present yourself.”

Then just be quiet and listen. When you are open to the higher self’s guidance, miracles will begin to unfold in your life.

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Self Help Books You Can't Live Without

One of the most important dimensions of good personal growth is feeding your mind with positive educational material.

Here are four of the most power-packed self-help books I've ever read.

I recommend that you get a hold of all of them and make a lifetime commitment to reading and studying them.

I say this because every time you read each of these books, you'll discover a new piece of wisdom and notice a change in your character, actions and results.

"Success Principles" by Jack Canfield

the success principles jack canfield

"Success Principles" is like the Encyclopedia Britannica of personal development. Every dynamic of personal growth is covered in great detail within this book.

This makes it a perfect reference when you're looking for a detailed and in-depth explanation of success principles, from those spiritual in nature to those which are more down-to-earth and practical.

Reading this book straight through might not be as beneficial as using it as a reference tool.

However, if you're looking for something which covers it all in as much detail as possible, or if you're looking for fresh ideas to accelerate your personal growth, "Success Principles" is the perfect resource.

 2. "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

think and grow rich napoleon hill

"Think and Grow Rich" is the result of the most detailed and diverse study of successful people in history.

The author, Napoleon Hill, spent over a half a century studying people like Thomas Edison, Dale Carnegie, Henry Ford, JD Rockefeller and dozens of others.

"Think and Grow Rich" is also believed to be responsible for the making of more millionaires than any other book in history.

It covers 13 progressive principles which, if applied and practised consistently, can do more than help you to get what you really want. They can empower you to make lasting changes in your own character which will empower you to naturally attract success and keep it.

"Think and Grow Rich" (which was written in the 20's and sold over one million copies BEFORE the end of the Great Depression) is also available in a 20th-century version, which includes updated language and dozens of examples from entrepreneurs who have used the 13 principles successfully.

 3. "The 8th Habit" by Dr. Steven Covey

The 8th Habit by Dr. Steven Covey

"The 8th Habit," by the master leadership expert Dr. Steven Covey, is like "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" on steroids.

Covey provides the most clear-cut and compelling reasons why leadership in the information age will require a completely different approach than that of the industrial age.

If you're in search of the most complete solution for affecting personal change, making a positive influence on others and fulfilling your life's purpose as a leader, "The 8th Habit" is second to none.

While "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" is a great read as well, you can get all of the benefits of the seven habits and so much more by purchasing "The 8th Habit" and making a lifetime commitment to devouring the materials in it.

 4. "The 4-hour Workweek" by Timothy Ferris

The 4-hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris

"The 4-hour Workweek" is the perfect companion to "The 8th Habit" and could easily be considered the manifesto for the entrepreneur of the information age.

Upon first hearing it, it might be tempting to think that the title is "unrealistic."

However, Tim shares his personal story for how he accomplished his own 4-hour work week and creates a step-by-step explanation of how you can do the same thing.

The new and revised version provides a comprehensive and detailed guide for making the escape from the rat race of the "real world" into a life of adventure and fulfilment.

TIP: If you only read four books for the rest of your life, make it these four. Again, it's important to read them more than once, and that you continue to use them to make positive changes in your personal growth.

Why You Should Create Positive Affirmations

Why You Should Create Positive Affirmations
Positive affirmations are short, effective statements set in the present tense that reflect the state of mind or condition you wish to obtain. When said with confidence, they can help you achieve goals and overcome obstacles.

An affirmation works to reprogram your mind, helping you believe that you have already achieved your goal before you actually achieve it.

Affirmations can be very powerful because the subconscious mind does not differentiate between reality and imagination.

They help you replace self-defeating thoughts that can run through your mind if you allow them to.

Your Inner Critic

A lot of the time our thoughts are our own worst enemy. Affirmations work on the principle that you are whatever you continually think about.

So, if you are continually repeating in your mind that you aren’t good enough, or strong enough, or handsome enough...whatever basically. Your mind will eventually believe it and this will feed out into the state of your life.

Subconscious Thoughts

Subconscious thoughts happen automatically without us thinking much about them. Our brains are very clever little things, filtering out what it thinks we need or don’t need and then embedding memories deep down for easy access later.

The thing is they can sometimes be deeply unhelpful for us, programming us to think and act in certain ways by default.

Positive affirmations help us break with these habitual ways of thought and create new, more helpful and empowering ones instead.

Put simply, affirmations help you control your subconscious thoughts.

What Are Positive Affirmations?

  • They are short, but powerful statements.
  • When you say them, think them or repeat them in your mind, the thoughts become your new reality.
  • Even though they are conscious thoughts, they help reshape your unconscious mind - for the better!

Change Your Thoughts: Change Your Life

Affirmations can be used to help improve any area of life. They can help you succeed in business, in your personal life and even help you achieve better health. Affirmations can even be used to improve your wealth consciousness.

Your mind is very powerful. So if you constantly worry about say, that you will never have enough money, then those are the thoughts you put out into the universe and they will bounce back into your day to day reality.

Furthermore, The Law of Attraction states that like attracts like, so in order to change your life, you must begin by changing your thoughts.

If you are focused on what you don't want, then that is what you eventually keep drawing to you.If you are focused on what you do want, then you can begin moving toward a better life.

Here are some examples to help get you going…

Affirmations for Wealth

Affirmations for wealth and prosperity can be as simple as:
  • I am a success in everything I do.
  • I am a money magnet.
  • Money comes to me easily.
  • Everything I touch turns to gold.
  • I am prosperity.
  • I have all the money I need to live a prosperous life.

Affirmations for Good Health

Typical affirmations for health include:
  • I am getting better and better each and every day.
  • I am healthy and whole.
  • Good health is my divine right.
  • I enjoy perfect health.
  • My body is healing.

Affirmations for Confidence

Affirmations for confidence include:
  • Confidence comes easily for me.
  • I am confident and self-assured.
  • I deserve the best because I am the best.
  • I am beautiful and charming.
  • I have much to offer the world.
  • I am remarkable.

Affirmations Help Manifest Positive Change

Affirmations help you move toward the life you want to achieve. They can help you overcome limiting beliefs and unhelpful ways of thinking.

Your subconscious mind holds onto everything you have ever seen or experienced, so those hurtful statements said to you as a child can hold you back in life.

When you use affirming statements, you can redirect your energy and redirect the course of your life.

Positive affirmations are a way of focusing your energy on the helpful and positive instead of the dis-empowering and negative.

By repeating them in your mind or aloud several times a day, you begin to believe positive things are possible so you will act accordingly.

Finally, positive affirmations help change your energy, your focus and crucially: your life.

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