If you want to stay happy, you need to stay away from negativity. Because it’s something that can make you sadder than you actually are.
Your thoughts define your reality, If you are optimistic you will see happiness all around you, or else you will stay broken inside your brain.
So it’s important to take care of what’s inside your head. In this guide, I will show you 15 ways that you can use to be happy and stay away from negativity.
1) Avoid Negative Thought Pattern
Our brain is quite smart, It creates patterns for the things that we do on daily basis.
For example, When are going to the office or school, You don’t need to think about what route you are going to follow. There is no need to explicitly tell your brain, Go this way.
The brain itself knows which way to go, Even when you are busy on the phone, You will be able to reach your destination, Without processing the route.
That’s because there is a thought pattern created for this action, You just recall this pattern, and then things happen themselves.
The same goes for negative thinking, and this is how you make a negative thought pattern,
- You go back to the past in your mind.
- You recall an event.
- Which gives you certain feelings. (positive/ negative)
- You repeat it.
Thinking about the past usually leads to negative thinking, It’s not your fault, Because it’s easy, Science has revealed thinking negative is easy as compared to thinking positive. It’s more like the default mode of the brain.
It means Bad is stronger than good.
For example, losing a job leaves a stronger impact than getting promoted.
So when you repeat negative thought patterns over and over, it becomes your habit and it feels more difficult to get out of this trap. And to stay away from the negativity you need to change your style of thinking, Which leads me to my 2nd point.
2) Don’t Try To Stop Thoughts
At this stage you might want to stop thinking, You may be thinking, “I need to stop every negative thought in my mind”, that’s where most people make blunders.
science confirms it, If you try to stop any thought, Your mind will focus more on it and it will make you stressed.
Here is the real-time experiment you can do on yourself,
- Don’t focus on the red color around you.
- If there is any red color, Just don’t even think about it for 1 minute.
You will find yourself thinking about the red color more and it will stand out from everything. Whatever the reason is we don’t want to go in deep, Just remember you can’t stop any thought.
So it means stopping negative thoughts is not a good idea if you want to stay away from negativity. And if it’s a bad idea then what’s a good idea?
3) Replace Your Thoughts
The best thing you can do is to replace your old thoughts with new ones. You need to shift the direction of your mind to something new and happy.
Let’s say if you had a terrible past, you lost someone that you love the most, and now you can’t live without them.
So in order to forget them, You have to shift your thinking to something new, For example, create goals, make a to-do list and follow them.
You need to have something to engage your mind with Because the thoughts in your mind never stop. You got to give it something useful to stay positive.
4) Practice Gratitude
Two psychologists, Dr. Robert A. Emmons of the University of California, Davis, and Dr. Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami, Carried out research about gratitude.
The research contained 2 groups, They asked the participants to write on some specific things.
The first group was told to write on things that they were happy about, While others wrote on things that they didn’t like.
After 10 weeks passed, They found that the members of the first group that practiced gratitude were happier. They visited physicians fewer times and were excited about their lives.
It’s because when they focused on the good side of their life, They forgot about the things that were not good.
If you keep a gratitude journal you too will become happier like them, You will realize that there are so many things to be happy for, And it will help you stay away from negativity.
5) Stop What-ifs And Should-Haves
There are thoughts going on in your mind that start with what-ifs and should-haves.
There is something you did in the past or didn’t do, and now you regret it.
- I should have kept quiet.
- I should not have behaved that way.
You need to forgive yourself for what happened, What’s gone is gone. The past does not serve you anymore, Go ahead focus on what life has to offer you.
And then there are other thoughts,
- What if they judge me?
- What if I don’t fit in?
You can’t control such things, And you don’t know if it’s going to happen or it’s just your imaginations.
So avoid these what-ifs and should-haves, Instead, focus more on how you can improve your life.
6) Avoid Negative People
Hang around with five negative people and you will be the next.
It’s true, there is scientific evidence that shows negative people can affect your brain badly.
Your friend and the people that you hang around with determine your future and your life. They affect your brain so much that you love to become one of them.
If you have friends that are ambitious and have big dreams, you will become ambitious too.
Because there is a kind of challenge between friends, When you find your friend being better than you, it hurts you badly, and that is why you want to change.
So if you hang around with people that are negative and are complainers, you will become a complainer too, Because they will shift your thinking to the negative side of life.
They will make you forget about what good things you have.
On the other side, happy people will remind you that you don’t lack anything, Your life is just perfect.
7) Be Present In The Moment
To stay away from negativity just remain in the present moment. Mostly there is nothing bad going on in the present moment.
The reason you are facing negativity is thinking so much about an event, Either that’s passed or yet to come, just don’t look back.
You dwell on the issue for so long, That you start to feel as if it’s happening right now.
To remain in the present moment, Simply do this exercise.
- Close your eyes.
- Take a deep breath.
- Focus on it.
This way you are shifting focus to the current moment, The moment that you are living in.
When you focus on the current moment, You realize that there is nothing bad going on, Everything is just fine and perfect.
8) Avoid News
Three bombs exploded, fifty people were killed, hundreds were injured, That’s what you hear in the news.
Did you ever think watching news channels can have an excruciating effect on you, BBC Says, “The news is accidentally warping our perception of reality – and not necessarily for the better.”
There is always something bad going on when you watch the news, that’s because the more negativity they spread the more views they gain.
There is a term in phycology Negative-Bias, Which means we register negative things in our mind rapidly.
As I mentioned earlier, Bad is stronger than good, And that’s what these news channels are doing, They are trying to put negativity in your mind.
Listening to negative talks day in and day out changes your perception of the world.
When I watch a news channel, I feel like there is nothing good happening in the whole world, Situation is worst, Everyone is in a problem, but in fact, the reality is different.
Well, there are bad things going on, But if you focus on the good, You will find that there are so many things that make you happy, That you can celebrate.
So if you want to stay away from negativity and live a happy life, Then stop watching these news channels, There is nothing good in them.
9) View The Big Picture
When you look at a big picture, I mean when you zoom it out and see your whole life in one picture, You will forget about the negative things happening right now.
The problem is that our view of life is situational.
If anything bad happens, let’s say someone made fun of you, You will feel like it’s happening with you the whole life.
The negative thoughts will start popping up, “No one likes me”, “I am not worthy”, and then you dwell on it. One incident defines your whole life.
It’s not just you, It’s happening with everybody, and that is why you need to broaden your view of life, If it remains situational you are in problem.
So when you look at the big picture, You will realize that it’s just a bad moment, it’s not how you live your life, It’s just a temporary feeling that will go away with time.
10) Keep A Specific Routine
Keeping a specific routine will make your health better, and you will see better stress levels.
When you don’t have a specific routine,
- You focus more on your problems.
- Which leads you to negative thinking.
- These negative thoughts increase stress.
If there is no structure in your day, you will think more of stressful situations, that’s becuase you don’t have something good to engage your mind with.
Dr. RACHEL GOLDMAN says, “When people don’t have a routine or structure to their day it can cause increased stress and anxiety, as well as overwhelming feelings, lack of concentration, and focus”.
In contrast, When you live with a particular routine You will concentrate on your tasks and things that you should be doing.
Having your tasks completed will give you a sense of control, it will make you happier.
So the bottom line is, To stay away from negativity, You need to focus on things that matter to you, That is worth spending time on, Which you can do by creating a to-do list.
11) Make Less Use Of Social Media
Social Media and depression are correlated, The more you use social media chances are the more you will be depressed.
Social media the heart of negativity, Because nothing you see on social media is real, Which makes you think that your life sucks.
The biggest reason social media makes you unhappy is the comparison, You are constantly comparing yourself to others.
Social media leads to social comparison – Wikipedia
You are only exposed to the happy moments of people, It makes you feel like everyone in this world is happy. Only you are the person with troubles and difficulties.
Maybe your neighbor got a new car, house, or a high-paying job, When they post it on Facebook and you see it, You will be jealous of them.
You will feel like you are missing something, things that you have are not enough.
Social media is destroying your inner peace, Stay away from social media, Stay away from negativity.
If you are having hard time-fighting negativity, just remember that it’s temporary feelings, It will go away, Time will heal it.
And surely when you try to remain positive, Eventually you will be able to overcome all sorts of negativity.
If you are facing negativity way too much, Then it’s time to bring some changes in your life. And clear your mind from unwanted negative thoughts.
Look around your friends, Are they the ones who spread negativity? Is it social media? or you dwell too much on past incidents?
Remove everything that brings negative thoughts to your mind, and live a purposeful and happy life.