The study has suggested that the average person has 6200 thoughts per day, and out of them, 80% are negative.
However, most people don’t even know about this, or they don’t try to overcome this conditioning.
When a person tries hard to get rid of negative thoughts, he or she often ended up finding several techniques, including Meditation and Mindfulness.
In this article, We will discuss How Meditation can help overcome negative thoughts or feelings and what science is saying about Meditation when it comes to mental well-being.
According to some studies, there is no doubt that Meditation helps to get rid of negative thoughts and feelings. It makes you more self-aware, so you can judiciously differentiate between positive and negative and remove the negative ones. It will allow you to replace positive thoughts with negatives and improve your emotional health.
How Do We Keep Getting Caught In A Negative Thought Cycle?
First, you must understand how these negative thought patterns work. In order to get that, you should know that our minds can’t discriminate between good or bad nor positive or negative. Your mind does only one thing: repetition or contemplation of thoughts that you feed in. Then it orders your body to release particular hormones, which creates sensations and emotions in the body.
Maybe, because of negative impressions implanted by our parents, peers, or relatives in premature age, our brains became already conditioned to think negatively. Then these processes continue getting bigger utile we don’t try to break it down.
Thinking negative requires less amount of energy rather than finding new ideas or making new patterns of thoughts.
And due to a lack of self-awareness, we can’t catch up with this process and unwittingly permit this process to go wildly and let it ruin our life.
As I said before, Meditation can solve the problem of negative thinking. Here are some case studies from reputed institutes that are clearly suggesting positive outcomes.
How Meditation Benefits In Negative Thinking
Clinical trials were performed on 3515 participants to find the effect of mindfulness meditation on negative stress-related psychological problems.
The result shows that Meditation can help to reduce negative stress-related problems at a small to moderate level. They noticed mindfulness meditation helps to decline anxiety, depression, distress, and other mental problems.
For those who don’t know, Mindfulness is the quality of mind to be aware of what you are doing or what is happening around you. Wherein you focus on things, sensations, thoughts, and feelings without making any interpretation or judgments.
Another study on meditation meeting with Agency of healthcare research and quality (AHRQ) conducted a randomized trial on participants who are suffering from clinically diagnosed depressive disorders. The sufficient evidences suggest that meditation therapies may reduce symptoms of depression.
One interesting experiment was done on mindfulness meditation in which participants who exercised mindful breathing meditation and told to watch negative images were experienced less negative thoughts compare to the control group, but results didn’t differ in their proportions of positive thoughts.
That means Mindfulness meditation attenuates thoughts emphasizing negativity, but not those who are emphasizing positivity.
Many meditation techniques, especially Mindfulness, can increase self-awareness and self-efficacy, leading to better choices, thoughts, and emotions. For instance, when negative thoughts came to mind, you can instantly detect and redirect them in a constructive manner.
Also Read: Does Meditation Make You Emotionless?
Meditation Techniques To Control Negativity
Let’s find solutions to get rid of negative thinking,
Here I would like to share some mindfulness techniques and meditation methods. All share the same goal to keep our minds engaged in the present moment and not carried away in past moments or future imaginations.
Technique #1: Mindful breathing
Since we were born, we have been breathing like our mind breath is always on the rail, but we never pay attention sufficient to it. So here, let’s use the breath as a tool to hook the mind.
Mindful breathing is a simple yet effective technique to hinder the restlessness of mind and make it tranquil.
This method requires awareness towards cycles of breathing. Focus your attention on the process of inhalation and exhalation, sense the touch of air at nostril, notice the belly or chest movement expanding and contracting, notice the cold air come in nose and warm air out from the nose.
Practicing mindful breathing gives you peace and the habit of being present in the present moment. You can practice this technique anywhere during your busy routine. When you are bounded by negativity, 1-2 minutes of breathing practice can rejuvenate your mood and may boost positivity in you.
You can also spare 10-15 minutes a day for mindful breathing meditation, which will create a strong neural pattern in the brain that reminds you to stay on track when you are crowded in darkness.
Here are some steps to practice mindful breathing meditation
- Find a quiet or less distracting place
- Sit in a comfortable meditation posture or on the chair with the back straight and facing front
- Set a timer of 10-15 minutes or more
- Close your eyes
- Slowly take 5-6 deep breaths and then follow natural breathing
- Ground your attention on inhalation and exhalation
During this practice, If your mind drifts away with thoughts, don’t be frustrated. Kindly bring the mind back on track.
Technique #2: Walk mindfully
As like mindful breathing, you can also practice Mindfulness while walking.
During walking, we merely pay any attention to our body parts or their movements. Mindful walking suggests focusing your attention on the different body parts and observes their movements.
When you practice this technique, Draw your attention towards foot, leg, hands, thigh, knee, shoulder, etc., and notice their movements and sensations.
This simple tip can make you free from unwanted thoughts, at least for some instance or more. However, consistent practice may produce more beneficial outcomes.
Technique #3: Music listening
We all love to listen to music, and it often fills some kind of energy, joyfulness, and enthusiasm in us. Some music has healing power and ability to pull out negative thoughts.
When you are stressed out, anxious, depressed, or covered from negative thoughts and emotions, then listening to classical music, devotional music, or nature sound leads to calm, relaxed and positive states of mind.
By listening music, you can also sing and dance. This will shift your attention from negative to positive. There are some meditation methods that allow dance with the music. These are called “Active meditations.”
Technique #4: Practice Yoga
Yoga is a series of performing different postures alliance with breath in and out. It’s very good practice to get the mind busy in a constructive way.
In yoga, you slowly make movements and change the positions that force your mind to pay attention to practice without roaming somewhere in the world.
Practicing yoga gives many physical and mental benefits such as improving energy level, heart health, physical strength, physical flexibility, mental balance, good mood, quality sleep, etc.
Technique #5: Observe negative thoughts
Observe your thoughts without making any reactions towards them is the profound practice of mindfulness.
You must understand, negative thought or positive thought both are just an impulse of different of energies in mind, but we don’t want to accept the negative one, that’s our problem. This disregard or aversion promotes more embrace to negativity to us.
When negative thoughts come to mind, we embrace and contemplate them and constantly thinking about what we don’t want, so this results in stress, anxiety, and depression for us.
Mindfulness has a very profound solution in regard to this. It emphasizes on observation of thoughts without making any likes or dislikes, judgments, or interpretations. You just need to be witness of thought without making any conflict.
For instance, when thought of resentment arises in your mind, first you have to accept this, then observe your thought, soon, you will find it’s gone. This is the power of awareness which means when you become aware or vigilant, illusions or negativity can’t stay any longer.
When you actually apply this technique, it would be very helpful in difficult situations in your life.
Technique #6: Use self-affirmations
Autosuggestions or self-affirmations is a scientifically proven technique to hijack your subconscious mind. When you consciously repeat one type of thought, it gradually becomes the dominating thought in your mind then shapes your destiny.
You can use this method to transplant negative thoughts into positive thoughts. Rather than focusing on the dark side, you should concentrate on the positive aspects of life, with the help of autosuggestion, you can easily do that.
Our minds can’t discriminate between good or bad, positive or negative. It works only on which that you have fed in. So, be vigilant when you came in contact with negative things, persons, thoughts, or feelings. Don’t let them drain your positive energy or influence your mind.
In order to rewire your brain structure, you should practice positive self-affirmations with enough faith in your ability.
You can do this in a meditation pose with your eyes closed. Create a daily routine, spare a few minutes of the same time for practice.
The following example of autosuggestion will help you for reference.
- DAY BY DAY, IN EVERY WAY, I AM GETTING BETTER BETTER AND BETTER
- I BELIEVE IN MYSELF
- I AM DOING MY BEST TO IMPROVE MYSELF
- I CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY AND TO LOVE MYSELF
- I AM INFINITE, AND MY POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS,
- I WILL NOT WORRY ABOUT THINGS I CANNOT CONTROL
- MY POSITIVE THOUGHTS BECOME MY REALITY
- I AM WORTHY TO ACHIEVE WHAT I WANT
- I AM BRAVE, BOLD, AND BEAUTIFUL
- I AM BECOMING MORE CONFIDENT EVERYDAY
However, you can also make a personal list of autosuggestion according to your limitations, fears, and beliefs, which you want to change. Create a list of them, remember them, and repeat them twice daily.
Technique #7: Count heartbeat
Heartbeat is always available with you as a breath, but most of us never pay any attention to this life-giving process.
You may ask, I can’t even notice my heartbeats, so how can I meditate on them? For those who can’t feel their heartbeats, they should cover their ears with the help of earplugs or hands-free or headphones.
After doing so, you could be able to listen to them. Now try to count them 1-50 with your eyes closed. This mindfulness technique requires concentration and it will alleviate the negative thoughts.
After some practice, your attention would be easily drawn towards your heartbeats, when you are at a quiet place or have nothing to do your attention will automatically go toward it.
Technique #8: Practice Guided Meditation
There are many meditation apps, Youtube videos, and other stuff on the internet that can help you meditate.
By the way, Guided Meditation is a series of instructions in the form of recorded video, audio, or from a trainer to guide you during Meditation. It’s a simple and effective way to reduce stress and negative emotions.
However, there are different types of guided Meditation for different problems, and each of them would involve some kinds of imagination, affirmations, or body scanning technique.
For instance, guided Meditation for positivity would involve positive self-talking (as listed above) and visualization of positive situations and incidences that you want to attract in life.
It’s a good way for beginners to overcome negative thoughts and emotions through Meditation.
These were 8 techniques of Meditation, and if you consistently practice them, I’m sure, they will help you to get rid of negative situations.
In general, Meditation is the most beneficial practice, especially for psychological problems. This is the reason, why Meditation is always an interesting topic for researchers and medical scientists.
They have unfolded many truths in the field of meditation and mindfulness, but still, there plenty of uncovered secrets and mysteries buried within.
If you are suffering from negative thoughts and feeling, then, I suggest, don’t pay any attention to them. Instead, instantly redirect those thoughts and feelings in a constructive way like doing exercises, yoga, object focusing, Meditation, listening to music, or any things as described in the above techniques.
Remember, do not give any reactions to them. Responding to them is like igniting more fire which could damage us.
Think in this manner, Negative thought and positive thought both are different sides of the same coin. They are simultaneously changing, and one does not stay permanently. They are impermanent in nature, come and go like day and night.
Understanding this law of impermanence will develop balance and resilience in life.