Do you find yourself thinking about, mulling over, contemplating, and focusing on all of the negativity in your life?
Do you find yourself feeling defeated and despondent, or like the future is bleak?
Do you often remember only the negative events of your past?
When communicating with others, do you only mention your problems or medical issues?
Do people seem to shy away from you or avoid spending time with you? Leaving you feeling alone and ignored?
If you answered yes to any of these questions above, you more than likely have a pessimistic mindset. You see the worse in every situation that you find yourself in, you often have major disagreements with others over minor issues, and you cannot see any positive in your future. You are what others would consider a toxic person. I know that is a harsh statement that will bring me a lot of backlash. Yet, I feel strongly that it needs to be said.
The truth is that this is not entirely your fault. You have had so many negative emotions to events that have happened to you, that you can no longer react appropriately to any given situation or person. You think and act with an emotional mindset.
An emotional mindset is not entirely a bad thing. It helps you connect with others, offers you the gift of compassion and empathy, and gives you a sense of belonging when people come to you for advice. The problem arises when your emotional mindset draws on the negative emotions rather than the positive.
In order to understand, we must first define what a mindset is. Dictionary.com defines Mindset as an attitude, disposition, or mood. An intention or inclination. Therefore, a pessimistic mindset is one that causes you to involuntarily respond in a negative light.
Here is the deal-i-o with a pessimistic mindset…
You are creating the very situations that you hate. Now, I know that no one likes to be told when they are doing something wrong. Yet in order to change one must realize how they are in part responsible. You must be willing to take ownership of your mindset just as if you would take ownership of a new car, house, or any other item you might purchase. Your mindset is a creation of you and will determine not only how you respond to others but how they respond to you.
Being pessimistic causes you physical and emotional stress which your body cannot handle on a regular basis. WebMD has a great article on what stress does to your body. I strongly recommend reading this article. This stress will raise your blood pressure which in turn will cause lots of other medical, emotional, and cognitive conditions to arise. The tension surrounding you becomes so thick that you can cut it with a knife. The effects of a pessimistic mindset so closely relate to those of stress, that they could actually be considered one in the same.
Long-term, the pessimistic mindset is not a sustainable way of life. The great thing about mindset is that with awareness, it can be changed and molded into something different, new and positive. It will take a lot of hard work, effort, and practice, but it can be done. You just have to decide that you want and need this change.
Marsha M. Linehan wrote a book titled: DBT Skill Training Handouts and Worksheets. Originally published in 2014, this book is a great resource to utilize in your journey to creating a new positive mindset. It will offer tangible worksheets and activities that you can do in an effort to improve your way of thinking and break out of that negative mind. It sells on Amazon for right around $30. And NO, I am not getting paid to plug this book. I am recommending it because I have bought the book myself and used it to break out of my old pessimistic mindset. I know from experience that it really works if you truly desire to change your life and will put the time, effort and care into doing the activities.
Once you begin to change your own mindset into a more positive one, more and more people will notice. They will start to support your efforts and show you the compassion you always desired out of them. Others will start to spend more time with you and most important seek you out because they actually ENJOY spending that time with you. Your overall outlook on life will become more joyful in turn causing you to adore, relish, and even savor those happy positive times.
Your focus will stop being on the negative events. You will be able to appropriately respond to life and everything within it including people. You will find that you smile a lot more, laugh a lot more, and gain a lot more overall pleasure from life. This is what you always wanted out of life, isn’t it?
What is the one thing that holds you back from changing your mindset? The answer is YOU! That feeling of fear of change. Of having to make a commitment to something new. The denial that you are causing these negative emotions and events yourself and refusing ownership. The thought that it is everyone else’s fault you feel this way.
No, you did not cause all negative events that have happened to you. But you DID and still DO have the power to control how you respond/ed to them. This is the KEY factor in determining if you will be successful at changing your mindset or not. Take back that control, stop blaming everyone or everything else and actually do something to help yourself. Stop thinking that others can or should step up to help you and do something to help yourself. This is not a statement of blame, it is a statement of concern and compassion. A statement with a strong desire to see you succeed and become the person you always wanted to be.
YOU GOT THIS!