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Negative Thoughts Impact Your Health!

In the last blog post we talked about the ANTS (automatic negative thoughts that enter our brain.)  They are strong little creatures that can carry the heavy weight of a negative thought into our brain and totally disrupt our neurochemistry, causing unnecessary anxiety and stress.

For every thought you have, a surge of electrical currents from your brain release an unknown number of neurochemicals, responsible for the operation of your nervous system. Your body responds to each thought accordingly like a world-class conductor leading a famous orchestra, with everything working in unison from your heart, liver and lungs performing their role with precision.  What, where, how and the length of time we give attention to something in life, along with our repetitive thoughts forms our neurological wiring.  Concentrating on pain that exists within your body, sends electrical currents to your mind that continues producing the pain.   Repetitive thoughts create connections in the brain that quickly become iron clad. These thoughts move from conscious to unconscious ways of thinking and being. That is how we act on auto-pilot.

Imagine being on auto-pilot with negative thoughts circling all day.  You don’t even notice it is happening.  Life-long repetitive negative thoughts are significant contributors to stress and disease within the body. Stress causes us to live in ‘survival’ state which negatively changes our internal state and exhausts our body. In turn, generating adverse responses including: anger, depression, misery or confusion. When we are in this state, it can be likened to behaving like a bird trapped in a cage or a prisoner held captive, we fail to see the possibilities for our life. This is how people become ‘stuck’ for their consistent emotional state is highly addictive resultant of the production of neurochemicals.

Take a moment today to notice every negative thought that enters your brain.  Write it in a notebook.  Ask yourself where the negative thought or belief came from and why you continue to believe it.  What parts of your day are affected because you have believed the negative thought?  Common negative thoughts are:  no one likes me, I’m not good enough, nothing ever works out for me, there’s no point in trying because it will never work.  After you have written the negative thought down and how it is impacting your day, re-write the thought as a positive statement.  For example: 

*“No one likes me,” could be replaced with the statement, “I have a great family who supports me.” 

*The statement, “Nothing ever works out for me” could be replaced with the statement, “I made a mistake, but I am still good at what I am doing.”

Shifting your thoughts to a positive cycle will directly impact your mood, your actions and your health!  Why would you not want to be the best person you can possibly be?

Jerry Walker, MA, LCPC, NCC