How to Skip Negative Thinking
After a stressful week, I decided to calm down with some exercise, music, and sunshine. I listened to my iPod as I took a lovely walk around the park. Songs kept popping up on my playlist that I was not in the mood to hear just then.
“It’s a cruel summer . . .” by Bananarama. No!
“I could be your kryptonite . . .” by Bridgit Mendler. No!
“Bought out the bar just to feel like I’m a star . . .” by Hot Chelle Rae. No!
I didn’t want to listen to the lyrics of these songs. There was nothing particularly wrong with the lyrics, and at any other time I would completely enjoy them. It was just that on that day, in that moment, I wanted to hear something that spoke to my soul and brought my mood up a notch.
What do you do when you come across a song you don’t like? You skip it. No big deal. You just push the button with those two little triangles on it and you’re off to the next song. You spend very little time lingering over a song you don’t enjoy. When you get to the next song, you make a quick decision about whether or not you want to continue listening.
“Your sweet moonbeam, the smell of you in every single dream I dream . . .” by Train. Getting closer.
“Dance, don’t hold the wall . . .” by Justin Timberlake. Yes! That will work!
That was easy… yet not everything is as easy. It doesn’t feel quite as easy to fast forward when you’ve had a conflict with someone or when you’ve messed up a great opportunity. In those situations, your mind hits the replay button over and over again and you relive every horrible moment repeatedly.
Imagine if there was a way to quickly skip over your negative thoughts just as easily as it is to skip over an undesirable song. Well, there is – successful people quickly skip over thoughts that don’t serve them. They move on to slightly better thoughts that propel them right into the heart of their ideal relationships, interactions, positions, and careers.
The skill of selective skipping can be developed, and it can serve you well. Once you learn how to stop dwelling on certain thoughts, your wallowing in the muck is short-lived. You fast forward right past thoughts like:
“What did I do wrong?”
“If I could just say the right thing . . .”
“I don’t deserve that.”
When you enhance your skill of selective skipping, you make a split second decision about whether or not you like a certain thought and then land on one that you enjoy replaying.
If you continue to say “yes” to thoughts that are meant to be skipped, you have little or no space left for the good stuff. The sooner you skip over things that don’t work for you, the faster you can arrive where you want to be. You must be willing to let go of the things you do not want in order to welcome the things you do want with greater ease and speed.
If you want to develop the ability to fast forward to the good stuff, fill out this assessment and begin working with a Frame of Mind Coach.