10 Fixes for Unhealthy Thoughts

10 Fixes for Unhealthy Thoughts

Every morning, my automatic alarm clock fills the air with a terribly annoying sound. I stumble into the kitchen to turn on the automatic kettle as I listen to my automatic bible. Then I brush my teeth with my automatic toothbrush before grudgingly grabbing my work clothes from the automatic dryer. I walk outside, press my automatic remote control, and obtain instant access to my automatic car. At the office, I breeze through the automatic doors just in time to catch the automatic elevator to my automated workspace on the second floor.

After work, I drive back home in my automatic car. Make dinner with my automatic rice cooker. Do the dishes in my automatic dishwasher and load some laundry into my automatic washing machine. I fiddle with a few other things around the house and finally retire for the night…in my automatic bed.

I followed this regimen religiously with only a few variations from day to day. My guess is that your routine and mine bear many similarities.

Great Right? Wait Until You Hear the Rest…

One day, I noticed a serious glitch in the system—my mind. My thought patterns were changing.

In the process of automating everything, I seemed to have lost control over my thoughts. In a sense, my thoughts had become…well…automatic. I didn’t need to try to think bad things—they just seemed to gush into my subconscious. My mind was like a PC and my thoughts had become internet viruses. It was terrifying.

After weeks of frustration, I finally realized something. The more I could automate, the less I needed to observe. The less I needed to observe, the less I needed to think. The less I needed to think, the less control I had over my thoughts.

After all, why think through a problem when the answers are just a Google search away?

I did many things to regain control of my mind. If you consistently find yourself struggling with unhealthy thoughts, start with this list.

  1. When you listen to audiobooks or talk shows, argue with the speaker in your mind. Always exercise your freedom to think differently from everyone else.
  2. Do not accept every deep and insightful idea right away. Ruminate on it. Think about it from several different angles. Analyze it with intensity before accepting (or rejecting) it.
  3. Engage in serious conversations…even with strangers. The weather is tired of being talked about. Talk about world events, money, and social issues instead. Engage in serious conversation. Don’t be afraid of sounding intelligent.
  4. Ask yourself tough questions. Why are you working at that job? Why are you really dating that person? Are you truly fulfilled?
  5. Answer the tough questions you ask yourself. Thou art not a robot. Don’t go through life on someone else’s schedule.
  6. Think through your problems. Approach problems with creativity. Google searches shrink the size of your brain. Seriously they do.
  7. Think through other people’s problems. Be the go-to person when a problem needs to be solved. The more you think, the more you grow.
  8. When you have a brain fart, don’t just roll over and die. Force your brain to think deeply until you remember the information that is escaping your memory. Give yourself at least 5-10 minutes before you give up.
  9. Use the stairs occasionally. Wash a few clothes by hand. Do the dishes manually. Take the time to appreciate the moment and engage in some of the mundane aspects of life.
  10. Slow down…notice that you’re alive…and smile

Does this take some effort? Yes, it does.

Is this stuff difficult? No, it is not.

Don’t procrastinate. Don’t wait until tomorrow. Each day is a precious gift. Don’t let negativity ruin that gift. Post a comment below, print off this list and start today!

Photo by Bhumika.B

Kola Olaosebikan

Kola’s blog is all about living life like it’s the real deal. Be sure to go chirp at her on Twitter and fall in like with her on Facebook.

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34 Comments

  1. This is so true and the more time you spend doing ‘that’ the easier it becomes. But having been through a week of being down, fed up, angry, fustrated and hormonal i noticed a gentle rise and recognition of good things. I started adding them to my grattitude jar which had sadly been neglected. It’s surprising just how much good stuff comes when you start recognising it and being full of greatness for it. For example. My son had great feedback for his school work at parents evening, totally not what i was expecting. I had a great Stampin Up demo last week with a few of my lovely friends, also totally not what i was expecting, i made a lovely chilli con carne the other night, a lovely walk to and from school, with my son who normally complains about walking but didn’t so each and everyone i added to a piece of paper and popped into my jar, long may it continue :) Full of greatness

    Reply
    • that’s wonderful! and uber thumbs up to your son for a job well done. i have a gratitude jar as well. i try to add things to it as often as possible so I can read through everything on New Years eve : )

      Reply
      • This is so TRUE!! I have been through a roller-coaster of so many crisis…i did lose myself…but with the help of my two amazing friends, i am on safe ground again…but i still do have few terrifying moments of being dragged back…i’ll surely implement these points…Thank you!!

        Reply
  2. Very well presented. Will print.

    Reply
    • you’re very welcome Abhijit : )

      Reply
  3. Great Article. I have noticed this with myself and your line hit home ; why think through a problem when the answers are just a Google search away?

    Many great points to pull from here Kola. Much appreciated.

    Reply
    • you’re welcome, Marie. glad to be able to help

      Reply
  4. This post is amazing! It’s so important to realize who you are and live according to what makes you happy. Love it!!

    Reply
    • hey Katie. thanks for stopping by : ) glad you enjoyed it

      Reply
  5. a great sequence of points Kola. After reading above it seems that these are the points I was looking for (really; m not kidding). A lot of things to follow for daily life. People think to do certain work but leaves it to future (procrastination); and there they make a mistake by procrastinating things. This creates a huge mental pressure. Procrastination and Negativity; these should really be avoided.. @Kola: Thanx for the article.

    Reply
    • that’s amazing, Abhijit! really glad to hear it. let me know how things are going

      Reply
  6. thanks for this..seriously, thanks!

    Reply
    • you’re welcome : ) #naijastandup! haha

      Reply
  7. I’m so glad a friend of mine shared this article. I definitely needed to read this today. Everything happens for a reason. This helped me realize that I have been having some of the problems that seem to pop every once in a while. And I can definitely follow a few of these steps to re-wire my brain. I also made sure to share this with a few friends and family.

    Reply
    • so glad to hear it, Alexandrea. tell your friend i said he/she is amazing for sharing : )

      Reply
  8. I’m never afraid of sounding intelligent – always of sounding stupid! I struggle to talk about serious issues with people outside of my family, as I always feel extremely right-wing or extremely left-wing, depending on to whom I’m talking.

    My problem seems to be excessive thinking – I always feel like I have a lot that I want to say, but not the intelligence to say it.

    Reply
    • you’re not alone in feeling that way, Becca. but let me tell you anybody that can run 20 miles is pretty amazing in my books : )

      Reply
  9. I agree to what you say..i always keep on trying to improve myself whether in professional,social or even in my own family…i look for things which makes life easier….you made my day….thankxx again :)

    Reply
  10. It’s so convenient to go through life in automatica because we don’t have to challenge/change ourselves. But does it work? Does it get us the results we really want?

    Reply
  11. Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.
    I used to feel like I couldn’t talk to people even my family and friends.
    I am currently on a spiritual journey of becoming my true self and gaining clarity.

    Now you just can’t shut me up. True people will listen to your words and respect you for who you are, If they don’t or put you down and mock you, then those peolpe don’t deserve to be in life anyway.

    Until just recently I was living my life the way partners and friends wanted me to.
    I want more out of life than sitting on a couch all day watching mind numbing soaps and bad news.

    I have “woken up” and realized that I need to change and be myself once again.
    I stumbled across “Eckhart tolle” and reading his material has made me understand myself and I can relate to his explanations. I have removed all negativity from my life and I feel so happy at last. I have just seperated from a toxic relationship and I now realize I don’t need another person to make me happy.

    The real me is back, my confidence and love for myself, other humans and the universe is back.

    I am so happy I found this blog, Great post, Thank you. :)

    Reply
    • i am also on a journey of self discovery. the patterns of pleasing and protecting/supporting are hard to release. I am more aware and mindful that it will take time. however still struggling on some days. I am currently reading Eckhart Tolle … A New Earth. It is helping. I too need to leave a toxic relationship but fear. is holding me back. What can I do to change this at a deep level. I feel like a yo-yo! KGJ

      Reply
  12. like it ..

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  13. You’re right, every day IS a precious gift and negativity can dull our senses to the joy that surrounds us. I have a gratitude journal rather than a jar. Same idea, though. And I’ve been taking gratitude walks with my dog. How many things can we find to use in a thank you? Countless things! Yay!

    Reply
  14. Definitely Kola. Automation makes our brains work less. Your post reminds me of Wall-E. A system where even getting up and wearing your clothes is automated and where you have nothing else to do, your become useless. It is the joy of doing it yourself that makes life so wonderful.

    Automation is not wrong. Partial automation can be good but still, raw hard work is one of the best things to do whether it’s cooking, solving a math problem or simply buying stuff from a real store offline.

    I’ve this observation too. Automation kills relationships. You don’t have to stay connected or share knowledge anymore. The brain isn’t working much.

    Reply
  15. Important stuff. The part about noticing you’re alive really resonates with me. I try to live presently every single day and enjoy writing and reading about the topic myself.
    Thanks for the post!
    Peter

    Reply
  16. it’s true…if we don’t stop and think at some point we will become androids walking in the streets :)

    Reply
  17. A really good and inspiring article, thanks for sharing your insights. Especially the part of asking yourself questions made me think that I don’t think about my opinion about things as much as I used to. Or maybe it’s also just being afraid to do not say “the right things” and others having a sceptical opinion of me.

    Reply
  18. I’m constantly trying to work out solutions to problems and exercise my ability to think. You’re right, it’s so easy for everyone to just “Google it” and not put forth the time and effort on our own. We are definitely spoiled with all our automatic convenience.

    I’ve been getting back to my roots lately, with the things my mother taught me. Like sowing buttons back on, and hemming clothes. Or eating food grown out of small garden or herb pot. It’s so much nicer, to work and try things for myself.

    Reply
  19. Very nice post. There are a lot of things that make our everyday lives more easier and we’re easily became comfortable in doing it. We still need challenges once in a while for us to be able to think and appreciate other things. Doing the same routine everyday does not give excitement and challenge in our lives and it makes us unproductive.

    Reply
  20. Hi… Simply loved your blog.. thank you…

    Reply
  21. Great inspiring article. Something that I always do to shift my negative thoughts, is I write in my gratitude journal. This really makes me stop focusing on the negative, and start focusing on how good I actually have it. There is always someone much worse off than me.

    Reply
  22. I loved reading this – Thanks for taking the time to put it together! Loved every bit of it and it made me smile too:). Great reminders. Thanks for sharing:)!

    Reply
  23. Enjoyed the list and the comments made by each person. I agree and shortly before reading this I decided to use my thought processes to solve some problems around my home that had been left to slide. I now have it worked out so that doing the wash/laundry is a pleasant chore! Have managed it so I am watering the veggie garden and lawn with the water from the machine. And rigged up clothes lines and hang out the wash listening to the birds and enjoying the fresh air and sun. Makes me feel good to be accomplishing some of my goals to be more “GREEN” and saving money sure does not hurt either!!

    Reply

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