Turning negatives into positives.
I remember working in the country side, It was a mild-march morning, a Tuesday and I’d arrived at work for 8am. As I approached the long cobbled lane, I’d see a glimpse of the beautiful old building I worked in, the lushness’ of green country views and playful lambs. I felt grateful for mild march mornings, the never-ending views, working in an old historic building and the smell of flowers all around.
Week two. It was a mild March morning, a Tuesday, I arrived at work for 8 am, I drove up the same cobbled lane, I saw an old bleak building, dull flat views, I felt the cold breeze of a mild march morning, and the animals looked glum. I didn’t notice the flowers.
Same time. Same place. Same views. Different mind-set.
I’ve always been an analyser and an over thinker. Both a curse and a blessing. The positives that come with being an over thinker are; they tend to be creative people, problem solvers, and more thoughtful. I can relate to this, as I weigh up how others may feel a lot, I’ve also been told I’m insightful and intuitive in my work. But the not so great side of this, is struggling with unhelpful and negative thoughts, and over analysing the smallest of situations. I struggled with this for years.
As a teen I would apply for a new exciting job, spend hours researching the company, shopping for the perfect interview outfit. The night before I would become so anxious my brain would run riot with thoughts, which would usually conclude in, ‘’There was just no point in me going to that interview. ’’
Another example of over thinking, I would see an old work friend in the street, Rather than naturally saying hello. I’d think, should I say hello? Does she even like me? Do I smile or just ignore her, encase she doesn’t smile back at me? Over thinkers will relate. Simple tasks, become not so simple. I’m not sure when this changed, maybe my self esteem grew, maybe being around more positive people helped, or years of battling the negative thoughts, I finally won.
But these past couple of weeks, I’m post surgery and learning to walk again with (broken) leg and new alignment, negative thoughts have tried to creep back in. I don’t like playing the victim or complaining like a martyr, but we all know that when you’re in a place of pain and sadness, you can become immersed in your own world. I know life’s not all rainbows and butterflies, I’m not Mary Poppins, the world is full of negativity and injustice, I see most of it everyday in my work. But when my own unhealthy thought pattern, can weigh me down, both mentally and physically, and affects others round me. I know I need to do something to change my mind-set, ( before It grips tighter).
So, I thought I’d write a list of the re-occurring negative thoughts Iv been having this week, and try and give them a spin, a better way of looking at things. First Thought;
I can’t bear the idea of people having to care and do so many small things for me.
Try and enjoy being waited on – Your own chef, cleaner ? That would be bliss to many people.
It is so much time off work, I’ll go stir crazy, they may replace me. I’m going to lose my mind sitting here.
Finally the opportunity to investigate that business idea you’ve always wanted to explore. Time to get into that new series you always complained you had no time to start. Get productive.
What if it goes wrong, what if I cant walk again, what if I’m worse off from deciding on having this operation.
Don’t meet trouble half way- Keep focusing on how far you’ve come. You’re doing great.
I’m no where near as far as that girl, I can’t lift, I can’t bend, I cannot move, I can’t manage- I’m failing already.
Don’t compare, it is not a race, you’re doing your best. Keep going.
I can’t cope with this pain I can’t do it, it’s too hard learning to walk again, just cut this stupid leg off, I’ll never manage it.
Well you have no choice, so get on with it, pain doesn’t last forever . Don’t be ungrateful for your leg ( tough self-love)
You may feel a bit nuts at first writing down your own battling thoughts, but give it a go, surgery related or not. Trying to think more positive isn’t about pretending you’re never ever in pain, or that you’re never in a negative mood. Without the pain and the sadness, we would have nothing to compare the good times with. We need a balance. But trying to overcome unhelpful, negative thoughts, its about giving yourself a better chance of a good day.
It feels better to now be the girl who smiled at that old friend……
than be the girl who didn’t smile back x