6 Simple Ways to STOP Negative Thoughts and to Start Positive Thinking as a Mom
How to be a positive mom and start positive thinking.
“I think I can, I think I can, I think I can”
We all know the story of The Little Engine who Could.
He thought he could, and he did!
Something I’ve come to realize even more lately is the real power of making little changes in our thoughts. I think most of us have been told for MOST of our lives something to the effect of “positive thinking yields positive results”.
Some common phrases associated with this statement are:
“You know if you change your attitude, things would be different”
“You just need to change the way you look at it”
“You have to fake it until you make it”
“You have to believe you can in order for it to happen”
This was not something I usually wanted to hear. I did not believe that such a small thing, like changing a few thoughts a day would make that big of a difference in what happened, or my overall happiness.
I’d usually think some form of the following:
How could I will my mind to do that!?
That takes time and energy and does NOT provide immediate results.
My thoughts can NOT affect or change my circumstance or situation. This is just the way life is!
One day I decided to try and give positive thinking a try. At first it was half-hearted, but the more I did it, the more I realized it could work.
As I have continued to implement positive thinking in my life by changing my negative thoughts, the more I have noticed changes in my mood, my happiness, and my overall mom life!
AND the biggest change I have noticed is my ability to think positively on a daily basis. It has especially helped me with my anxiety with my kiddos, and the day to day grind that motherhood can sometimes be.
It has started to become more natural for me. I’ve also had the greater ability to replace my negative thoughts with a positive one.
BUT I was only able to do this when I decided that it COULD work and that it WOULD work for me.
“You really do have to believe you can do it in order for it to happen” 😉
So, if you haven’t already, just try it. Try to make little changes EVERYDAY in just 3 thoughts, and, I promise, you will see a difference in your life.
How to Replace Negative Thoughts and Start Positive Thinking
1. Every time you have a negative thought, replace it with positive thinking to counteract it.
For example, when I think “Today is going to be such a hard day because I have this, this, and this. It’s just the same ole stuff,” I instead think “Today is going to be a great day, I have a great family, enough money to pay my bills, and healthy kiddos!”
It’s small, but that little thought can change my whole outlook on the day. Sometimes I have to repeat it 3 or 4 times, but it still works.
How can I see the good in this?
Is what I’m thinking really true?
Am I making this into a bigger deal than it actually is?
What would you tell your best friend if she had those thoughts?
Is this going to matter in 1 day from now, 1 year from now, or 5 years from now?
Answer those questions when you’re trying to change your negative thought, and it’ll help you come up with a positive one.
Note: You might ask yourself, as I have, “it’s annoying having to convince myself all day that it’s a good day.” This is true, but you have to understand the underlining meaning to this. The more you believe its going to be a good day, chances are you will make it that way!
You are also training your mind to start thinking “it’s going to be a great day” before you even think “it’s going to be a bad day!”
2. Don’t Finish the negative thought. Don’t let it linger.
Don’t allow yourself to daydream about a negative thought.
Don’t even entertain it.
Don’t start your downward spiral of despair.
When you start to have a negative thought, stop it, and replace it. It is literally impossible to think about two things at once so just pick the positive!
Don’t entertain it into that pit. Stop, and think, “I am not a bad mom, I am a learning and growing mom, and while I can improve, I do a lot of things right!” And then list all the things you do right!
A lot of my anxiety stems from thinking I’m a bad mom. It’s learning to control those horrible thoughts lessens my anxiety.
3. Don’t Waste Time.
Don’t be idol.
Don’t waste hours where you can sit around picking apart your life and degrading yourself.
Keep yourself busy by working towards a goal, engage in life and with other people. Don’t set up an environment for the negative thoughts to enter. Start a hobby or goal today!
If you’re a SAHM, a lot of times it’s hard because you might have some “thinking” time while breastfeeding, or kids are napping. You’re alone and you can think.
Sometimes that’s good and sometimes it’s the perfect time to feed negative thoughts. Get in the habit of planning that time. Maybe read a good book while breastfeeding, or use nap time to work on your hobby or chat with a friend.
Don’t let your thoughts run wild.
4. Feed your happy thoughts.
If you have a happy thought, feed it.
Sometimes I’ll leave the house and think, “my hair looks good”. Then I feed that thought with “my hair does look good, I’m going to have a good hair day, and I feel good about myself”.
Or sometimes I think “I have good kids, they listened today” (unfortunately this thought happens less than I’d like). I could feed that thought with “I’m a good mother, I am enough for my kids.”
Learn to recognize the good thoughts you are having and exaggerate them. It may seem silly at first but you will love yourself for it.
Other things I like to do is while I’m having a happy moment, I tell myself “I’m happy, and life is good!” Your brain remembers this for the next time and tells you you’re happy! The key is repetition!
5. Repetition, Practice and Give yourself time.
Don’t get discouraged if this doesn’t happen right away.
Be patient with yourself; it takes practice and time.
You are retraining your brain to think more positive and to focus more on the positive.
The more you do it, the more natural it will be for your brain. BUT do it everyday.
Feed your positive thoughts and replace your negative thoughts, everyday! It’s repetition that will make it into a habit and a natural way for your brain to think!
6. Pray for help.
You know I had to add prayer.
It’s a game changer.
Pray for help, even if you feel you don’t deserve helping! Pray specifically for ways you be positive and think positive.
Ask God to give you positive thoughts and “mojo” throughout the day.
I said 6 ways, but lets make it 7. (but I’m not going to change this title).
Being grateful can go a long way. Just by writing down something you’re grateful for everyday can change your whole perspective.
Try just writing down 3 things you’re grateful for everyday. It helps to get in the habit of counting your blessings. A grateful journal would be a great way to keep a log daily.
8. Love Yourself
Okay, I’m going to add another one. You’re just going to get all kinds of bonus information, haha.
Start loving yourself. Love you, for you.
A great way to do this is by writing down 3 affirmations about yourself everyday. I write mine on the mirror. What do you like about yourself today? or Who do you want to be today?
Every day is a new day, full of new possibilities. Who do you want to be? An example would be:
- I am strong
- I am bold
- I am myself
Maybe these are weakness you see in yourself that you can improve on, or maybe something you want to become. You have to believe those things in yourself before you can start becoming them. It’s easy to think down on yourself, so consciously start thinking happy thoughts about yourself.
Things to Remember about Positive Thinking
Start looking in the mirror and telling yourself, “you’re awesome”. Don’t think it’s weird.
At first you will feel like you’re brain washing yourself, but then you will start to believe it and start to live it!
One of the things that held me back is thinking that it was dumb, or feeling dumb doing it. You have to let that go, and when you do, you will see changes.
It’s easy to throw a pity party because you think you don’t have a solution to your life or your unhappiness, but don’t let yourself! You have to remember that you WILL NOT feel better once the pity party is over. (Not that I don’t have my good share of pity parties)
You just feel regret, guilt, and more sadness.
Take control of your thoughts, one thought at a time, TODAY. And you will see changes in your life. Your future self will thank you.
Change your Thoughts, Change your Life!
You could start implementing this today with my Make Today Happy Goal Sheets. I use these to create positivity in my life. They are so simple, but they work. They have helped me with my confidence, and my overall outlook on life and my goals in life.