Wellness and Your Thoughts
Your thoughts, as previously discussed, play a significant role in how physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually fit you are. How many times have you sabotaged yourself simply because you talked yourself into believing that you were not good enough, strong enough, fit enough, or attractive enough? If you continually allow negativity to rule your thoughts, it will begin to rule your life.
Think about the last time you walked into the post office (or any customer service driven area) and there was a lengthy line. Your brain automatically and immediately begins to think negatively because of the last line you had to wait in for over an hour. It does not know the difference between this line and the last line.
Your automatic response kicks in and helps you bemoan your fate. You begin to think, Long lines are a way of life for me, or I can't ever go anywhere anymore without a line, or I've going to draw my first social security check standing in this line!
What is “thought magnification”?
Thought magnification is when you take a small situation and blow it up in your mind until it becomes an all-consuming event. For example, when someone pulls out in front of you while driving, your automatic thoughts may lead you to believe that this person did it on purpose, that he or she knows you and hates you and is trying to get back at you for something. This is how automatic thoughts can lead to situations such as road rage.
Before you know it, your automatic response and thoughts have ruined your day, ruined the moment, and ruined what could have been a pleasant conversation with the person in front of you. Your thoughts have caused unneeded and unhealthy stress.
It doesn't matter that the line moved quickly and that you only waited five minutes; what matters is that your automatic thought process took over the situation and made it negative. This is how powerful thoughts are to you and your mental and physical health.
If you find yourself seething and fuming about a negative situation because of your automatic thoughts, ask yourself the following questions:
Are you jumping to conclusions?
Is the situation really that dire?
Is it life threatening?
Are you being irrational?
Have you magnified the situation in your mind?
Is it really as bad as it seems?
In ten years, will anyone know the difference?