Dr. Sheri D. Pruitt answered:Negative thoughts will dampen your motivation when changing health habits, but they don't have to mean the end of your success. You can stop them before they take over. Here is a simple three-step strategy to manage negative thoughts:
1. Notice when you have negative thoughts. Negative thoughts usually follow a slip-up in maintaining a changed behavior -- you cheated on your diet or you missed your workout. Take a minute to write down what's going through your mind. What are your thoughts? Maybe you're thinking negatively: "I have no self-control" or "I'm not disciplined enough to do this."
2. Turn the thought into an action. Once you've caught the negative thought and written it down, repeat it out loud, but imagine that someone else is saying it to you. For example, imagine that someone said, "You have no self-control" or "You're just not disciplined enough." As silly as this may sound, you will be more likely to stick up for yourself by picturing someone else saying the words.
3. Defend yourself. Is it really true that you have no self-control? Chances are this negative thought isn't 100% accurate. Write down as many situations as you can think of that prove this negative thought is wrong. Think about the times when you have shown self-control. Also, think about other explanations for why you slipped up this time. The bottom line is to defend yourself against the negative thought.
This exercise won't keep you from having negative thoughts, and it won't prevent occasional slip-ups, but it can help keep negative thoughts from taking over and ruining your efforts. By catching negative thoughts as they come up, and defeating them, you will be more likely to stay motivated and stay on track.Find out more about this book: Living SMART: Five Essential Skills to Change Your Health Habits ForeverHelpful? 1 person found this helpfulNegative thoughts will dampen your motivation when changing health habits, but they don't have to mean the end of your success. You can stop them before they take over. Here is a simple three-step strategy to manage negative thoughts: 1.... More
Dr. Karyn Hall answered:
Our thoughts are like chimpanzees swinging from tree to tree, here, there, everywhere. Just because you have a thought doesn't mean it is true. You might want to try mindfulness. With mindfulness, you just notice the thought. You might label the thought, like "That's a thought." You don't hold onto it or examine it or judge it, you just let it flow on by like a wave. But you give no power to the thought. At times, all of us have thoughts that have nothing to do with reality. So you are mindful of the thought and accept that at times you will have thoughts that aren't helpful to you.
If you have a recurring thought that bothers you, then you might want to see if there is any evidence to support the thought. Is there evidence against the thought? If there is evidence to support the thought, or the thought might be justified, then consider if you want to make changes or not? Or do you want to accept the situation as it is for now? Acceptance means not judging yourself. If you don't want to make changes or it's not the right time, then use mindfulness and be aware of the thought as just a thought and not something you need to take action on.Helpful? 1 person found this helpfulOur thoughts are like chimpanzees swinging from tree to tree, here, there, everywhere. Just because you have a thought doesn't mean it is true. You might want to try mindfulness. With mindfulness, you just notice the thought. You might label the... More