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Changing unhelpful patterns of thoughts

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Thoughts lead to behaviour

Thoughts are linked to behaviour. When we think positively, we tend to be more confident, smile more and radiate positivity. But when we are feeling low, we tend to withdraw.
How you think affects the way you feel as well. For example, think of an embarrassing moment and you probably find that you start to sense the feeling of embarrassment. The thought alone makes you embarrassed even when you are not doing anything embarrassing right now.

Negative thinking

Negative thoughts are a normal aspect of human behaviour. It is therefore, important for us to consciously change the way we think for the better. Some common styles of negative thinking include:
• All or nothing
• Overgeneralisation
• Labelling
• Discounting the positives
• Jumping to conclusions
• Catastrophising
• Emotional reasoning
• Absolute thinking
• Mental filter
• Personalisation
• Blaming

Changing your negative thoughts

You can learn how to change your thoughts and patterns of thinking. Realise that you are in control and responsible for your thoughts. Here are some tips:
• Record your negative thoughts using a journal
• Identify particular situations that trigger negative thinking
• Challenge the negative thought with truth and fact
• Replace the negative with positive thoughts
• Make the choice to stay positive as you face the situation

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