How To Reframe Your Negative Thoughts
Like everyone on this planet, you want to be as happy as possible, as much of the time as possible. But like most people, you probably don’t have happiness as your primary priority. Or maybe you think you do, but in reality, you find yourself consistently sabotaging yourself by slipping into sadness, despair, regret and other unproductive negative thoughts.
Without happiness as a priority, its very easy to slip into negativity, and suffer much more than you need to in this life. That’s why, if you want to learn how to level up the quality of your life, it’s so crucial that you embrace the pursuit happiness as your primary priority, and not just as a concept that sounds nice.
Once you truly embrace the pursuit of happiness, you’ll have the right mindset for being able to recognize and reframe negativity. And the right mindset is crucial because you have thousands if not tens of thousands of negative thoughts a day.
You need to wake up every day to do battle with demons. The demons of doubt, despair and depression. There’s no other way. It’s spiritual warfare and you have to be ready to wake up and win every day.
The good thing is with the right mindset, and the right reframes, you can start feeling better instantly.
And even better, anyone can use this technology. Because it’s not “objective reality” dependent. Reframing negativity isn’t dependent on your income, or your IQ or your looks or anything besides you WILL to make it work. With the right will and application of your creativity, you can make a massive difference in the quality of your life starting today.
How To Reframe Negative Thoughts
The first thing you need to focus on is your awareness. In other words, being mindful of negative thoughts. If happiness if your primary priority, you need to take awareness of negativity very seriously, like gun to your head seriously.
You need to stay aware because you’re going to have thousands of negative thoughts a day, at least. It’s just a matter of catching them, recognizing you’re unhappy, and asking the right questions.
Asking The Right Questions
The right questions are all variations of:
- Why am I unhappy?
- What do I have to do to feel better?
You are the questions you ask yourself, so it’s very important you know how to ask the right questions.
Once you ask the right questions, you prime yourself for the right reframe.
The right reframe is the best reframe of your negative thoughts at the time. You might not be able to get to happy, but you can always get out of doubt, despair and depression – even if its just to neutral.
Reframing, or state management, is the most important skill there is.
And in practice, is much more effective then any type of therapy. Because therapy deals with the past, yet the past no longer exists. The present is all that’s real, and state management is control of the present.
The past is not the way forward, the present and the future is. Staying stuck in the past is why you suffer.
It’s like with physical pain, it doesn’t matter how bad that pain is, from fever to cancer, once the pain is gone, it’s gone, you can’t remember physical pain if you tried. Mental pain however, can be relived, rehashed and remembered ad infinitum. And many types of therapies encourage this!
Compare the mind to the body:
Therapy is like taking a physical scar or injury that’s causing you pain, and picking at it, and opening it up, and digging into it, thereby amplifying the pain so you can remember the pain and somehow “process it”.
Reframing, is taking the same physical scar or injury that’s causing you pain, and taking the right medicine, or doing the right stretches to remove the pain and feel good, in the present moment.
The game changing revelation comes when you recognize that you choose how you feel.
YOU CHOOSE HOW YOU FEEL AT ALL TIMES
YOU CHOOSE HOW YOU FEEL AT ALL TIMES
YOU CHOOSE HOW YOU FEEL AT ALL TIMES
Negative thoughts only have the power to hurt you if you let them.
It doesn’t matter how bad the thought is or what happened to you, you always have control over how you feel.
You have the choice to choose positive or negative and when you’re being negative you are actually CHOOSING to be.
Types of Reframes
There are two types of reframes you need to master.
- Unproductive negative thoughts, which are negative thoughts that serve no purpose.
- Negative thoughts that need action. These types of negative thoughts are not necessarily your enemy. Instead they’re either alerting you to mindset shifts you need to make, or behaviors you need to change.
Reframing Unproductive Negative Thoughts
For low level negative thoughts, the best reframe is often just ignoring it. Thoughts like you’re a loser, or you’re tired and should stop working – you just talk to them like an annoying guy at the bar. No or I’m a busy or fuck off.
2) Focus Change
Changing focus is an excellent way to reframe negativity. The best focus change is going back to work. When I catch myself in negative thoughts during the day, my go to reframe is just going back to my mission. Within minutes I’ll have forgotten about the thought completely. A great way to signal focus change is to label the thought as unproductive and move on.
Reframing Negative Thoughts That Need Action
1) Positive Reframe
For thoughts that need a mindset shift, your best move is a positive reframe. When I used to work in sales, I hated every minute of it, from my bosses to dealing with rude clients to cold calling to coworkers. That was until I reframed every action, and every cold call as a step towards making more money. And putting that money into savings. And using that savings to fund my businesses and my permanent escape from wage slavery.
When I made this mindset shift, not only was I able to excel but I turned a major negative into a positive. Eventually I was able to make my escape and I even ended up being able to monetize that knowledge through writing a book on how to sell.
One important thing to remember when doing positive reframing is reality testing your reframes. Some guys who teach NLP based pickup teach men to imagine themselves as Superman, or 10 feet tall when approaching women. This is not a useful frame, because your subconscious mind will never buy into it.
Other guys teach the frame of approaching women with the intention of making them feel desired. This is a good thing, and being able to express your intent honestly is a good thing, but going o for 2000 in approaches is a problem. Yet I’ve seen some guys on pickup boards talk about being happy to have expressed intent and make 2000 women feel desired.This is not a productive reframe.
When you approach a woman, your end game should be to get that woman and focus on results that will get you there. In those types of situations you need to look into doing things to increase your sexual market value, as well making major behavioral changes.
Lastly, it’s a good to sit down and think of your most persistent negative patterns. Be it about sickness, or fear of dying, or low self esteem and look at creating positive reframe stacks. Ones that you can go back to time and time again when those major negative feedback loops rear they’re ugly heads, which they will.
2) Behavioral Change:
The behavioral change is the best reframe for a negative thought about things you need to change in your life. Be it addictions, or negative people, or lifestyle choices, or a job you hate. These types of negative thoughts are your friends, and should be listened to and acted on. The bulk of your progress in personal development will come from listening to these types of thoughts and applying solutions.
When it comes to negative behaviors, one thing you might find useful is sitting down and listing your 10 worst recurring problems. From a job you don’t like, to a toxic relationship to whatever your 10 biggest problems are and figuring out action-based solutions. I’ve done this myself and it was a massive step forward. In fact I took it to the extreme created a system, using the Wunderlist task management app to solve those problems through setting my mission, goals, routines and projects. You can see exactly how to do that in my book How To Get Organized.
So the above sounds pretty simple right?
That’s because reframing is simple.
It’s also easy.
You’ve probably already reframed a negative thought in the course of reading this article.
What’s not easy is consistency – or doing it every single day forever.
Reframing 300, 400 or even 4000 thoughts a day forever. No matter what happens.
Yet that’s exactly what you have to do, because that’s life.
The secret to success in anything is vigilance, vigilance, vigilance.
It’s one thing to just read the content here and just passively absorb it.
It’s another thing to start applying it every day – that’s where vigilance is key.
Reframing thoughts is both an art and a science.
It’s an art in the sense of applying your creativity to create positive reframes and behavioral changes. Those reframes and solutions might not come right away. Some large problems might take years to solve, but with enough focus and enough creativity, the answers do come. And the more you practice the art of positivity, the better you get at it.
The science comes from following the method and being vigilant as a motherfucker. I can’t stress how important vigilance is. Most people never grow because they’re not vigilant about they’re personal development. They do it for a few hours or a few days and then start to slack.
In summary it comes down to:
- Consistent awareness
- Asking the right questions
- Using the right reframes
- Being vigiliant as hell
- Following the gameplan
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