Changing Your Mood

Submitted By Dennis Marshall :

Negatively Predicting the Future

The last stage in any downward spiral is thinking that nothing will ever happen to change things and that the outcome is entirely bleak. In other words, “It’ll all go horribly wrong.”

Challenging Your Thoughts

Much of our negative thinking is superstitious. We imagine that looking on the dark side acts as a talisman against bad things happening.

An American psychologist called Seligman dispelled that notion for ever. He and his team studied hundreds of people, assessing their thinking styles through coffee-room chat, letters and telephone calls. He then looked them up after 25 years had passed. He discovered that the more positive thinkers were more successful in everything they undertook, had fewer nasty live events, were less likely to become depressed and lived longer than their more negative counterparts.

Standing Back and Assessing

The process of standing back to assess your life objectively reduces years of ‘rutty’ thinking and can move you on to the next stage of your career. This thinking style is especially good if you have a tendency to use old or wrong labels and are an over-generaliser. You can apply this approach to any situation, including post-relationship breakdown problems.

Answer these questions in terms of your relationship breakdown and see if it shifts your thinking into positive mode:

Reality Thinking:


What evidence is there to support your thoughts?
What evidence is there to contradict them?

Alternative Interpretations

How might someone else react in this situation?
How would you advise someone else in this situation?
What evidence is there now to support alternatives?


What is your goal in the problems situation?
Does the negative interpretation help or hinder you in achieving the goal?
If you believed in an alternative, what effect would that have?

Feeling better?

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