Sometimes, do you feel like your life is more or less perfect, but you still don’t feel happy or satisfied, or even content? You have a good job, a happy family, and great friends, but it feels like something is always holding you back, and deep within yourself, you always experience this emotional and mental exhaustion, as if something is eating at your joy and peace of mind.
Knowing the answer to that might surprise you because it might not be what you are expecting. Sometimes you might consistently do something or think in a certain way that slowly eats away at your peace of mind and depletes your energy, without you even realizing it. Certain attitudes and patterns of negative thinking can be detrimental to your mental and emotional peace.
No matter how ‘perfect’ your life might be, the more you worry, and feed the negative thoughts in your mind, the more you will feel mentally and emotionally drained and unhappy. However, knowing these types of negative thinking might help you understand them better, and help you to put a permanent stop to them.
8 Types Of Negative Thinking That Can Destroy Your Peace Of Mind
1. The overwhelming need to control everything.
Life is unpredictable, and will always be unpredictable. No matter how scared you might be about the future, you will have to accept life for the way it is, and the more you try to resist it, the more unhappiness you will be bringing into your life. Trying to control every little thing is exhausting and useless because life will go on the way it’s supposed to, and not according to what you want all the time.
This constant need to control everything is only going to make you feel more frustrated, out of control, and anxious. Being organized and planning certain things out is a good thing, but trying to control every little thing in life, in the hopes that they will always work in your favor is not the right attitude to have. Sometimes, you need to let go of the reins and let life do its thing.
2. Having a hard time asking for help.
Are you one of those people who despite going through an extremely difficult time, refuses to ask for help from anyone? Because you have this notion, that if you ask for help, you will come across as weak and incapable? Well my friend, by doing this, you are just making things more difficult for yourself, by putting too much unnecessary pressure on your heart and mind.
Taking someone’s help, and trusting them to lighten the load on you is nothing to be ashamed of. Sometimes, some problems might be too overwhelming to handle by yourself, and it is during such times, you should openly and unapologetically ask for help because at the end of the day you are human and you have your limits. There’s really no point in killing yourself over a problem that can easily be solved by simply asking for help.
3. Holding on to the pain of the past.
“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift. That’s why they call it the present.” – Master Oogway
Master Oogway hit the nail right on the head with this saying, didn’t he? The past is gone, and there’s nothing you can do to change it; the more you try, the more unhappiness and pain you are going to get. Holding on to your past will never help you be happy, rather it will always stop you from experiencing the beautiful things in life. If you constantly keep living in the past, life will just pass you by and before you know it, you have missed out on some really great people, experiences, and relationships.
You cannot change the past. You cannot go back to the past and undo all the things you did. And most importantly, you can’t change what is going to happen, because time doesn’t work like that. Instead of obsessing about the past, focus on your present and future, because that’s what you have right now. You have the capacity to shape your present and your future the way you want, so for the sake of your peace of mind, let go of the past and choose happiness.
4. Feeling scared and anxious of the future.
Just like holding on to the past can destroy your peace of mind, constantly worrying about what might happen in the future will yield the same result. Worrying about something that has not even happened can not just ruin your peace of mind, it will also stop you from making the most of the present. When you spend a lot of time feeling anxious about the future, you are depleting yourself of your mental and emotional peace.
Focus on the now. Focus on the life you have now, instead of focusing on what might happen a few years later. And you should never feel scared of the future, rather you should be optimistic about it, and embrace it with open arms because life is full of surprises, and that’s the beauty of it. So, make the most of your present, and deal with your future when it comes, okay?
5. Not standing up for yourself.
One of the quickest ways of losing your peace of mind and your sense of self-worth is by being a people-pleaser. When you find it hard to say ‘no’ to people and refuse to take a stand for yourself, you are giving off the message that what you need is not important. The more you keep on doing this, the more your negative thinking aggravates. It gets to the point where you feel completely depleted, and find yourself in a dark place, mentally and emotionally.
Wanting to make others feel special and doing things for them is an admirable quality to have, but you should never do it at the expense of YOUR peace of mind. If you keep on saying ‘yes’ to everything and everyone, you are going to lose yourself, and your wants and needs will remain in the backseat. So, it’s okay to focus on yourself sometimes and if you don’t feel like doing something, it’s okay to not do it.
People who love you and care about you will never give you a hard time about it and the ones who will, are the ones you should remove from your life. If somebody does not care about your wellbeing, and only cares about their own needs (even at the expense of your mental health and happiness), they don’t deserve to have a place in your life.
6. Being pessimistic all the time.
A little bit of pessimism is fine now and then, but if you always see everything negatively and you always expect the worst to happen, you will end up being the most unhappy person in this whole, wide world. Moreover, too much pessimism is not good for your health too. If you keep on expecting that nothing good will ever happen, because tragedies and unfortunate events make life go round, then you will end up being a misanthrope.
The more negatively you think, the more negativity you manifest, and the more your confidence gets affected. Being scared and uncertain is okay, but what’s not okay is constantly fixating on the probability of things going wrong. If you want peace of mind and joy in your life, you need to be a bit optimistic and hopeful.
Related: 10 Ways To Stop Being Pessimistic
7. Grumbling and cribbing about every little thing.
Complaining all the time about every little thing is not a very attractive trait to have, and can drive everyone around you crazy. Constant grumbling and cribbing don’t just ruin your mental peace, it affects your energy too because this leads to you feeling emotionally drained. This habit is not just useless and detrimental for you, it also ends up annoying the people around you.
The more you feed this habit, the more it grows. The more you complain and crib, the more you find things to be unhappy about. This vicious cycle continues until this becomes the defining part of your personality, and happiness and contentment seem like impossible dreams. Being appreciative and grateful for what you have is the key to happiness and joy in life, not grumbling about every little inconvenience.
8. Feeling guilty for taking a break.
Hustling is the name of the game these days, and everywhere you look, people are sacrificing everything in their lives for hustle culture. Work is important, and building a career is even more important, but so is rest, relaxation, and taking a break. If you never take a break and keep on pushing yourself, then it’s just a matter of time, before you collapse, both physically and mentally. Burnout is not the way to be successful and happy in life, and feeling guilty for taking a break is not the right mindset to have.
It’s crucial that you take a break sometimes, and just do what makes you feel happy and relaxed. Disconnect from your work and spend time with your family and friends, because they are as important as your career. Go on a vacation, have a romantic dinner with your spouse, or grab a few beers with your mates, do whatever makes you feel alive and happy. Life isn’t always about earning money and working, it is also about good friends, happy relationships, and amazing experiences.
Related: The 7 Types of Rest You Need
Always remember that your peace of mind and happiness are in your hands, nobody else can do that for you. The more you work on your negative thought patterns, the happier you will be, because life is a beautiful thing, and if you don’t make the most of it, you will be left with regrets and disappointments. There is nothing greater than peace of mind, joy, and fulfillment!