Tag: Power of Positivity

How to Talk Yourself Out of a “Bad Mood”


We’ve all experienced a “bad day.” Even people who always seem to be in a good mood have days where they have low energy and aren’t seeing the world in their usual positive light. There are a million reasons why we might have low spirits, but the common denominator is the kind of thoughts we are having prior to and during a period of negativity. What are your thoughts (aka self-talk) when you are in a “bad mood”? Perhaps this line of inner conversation sounds familiar:

Wow, what a crappy day. I feel terrible; I can’t seem to concentrate on anything. I’m never going to get anything done today. What a waste. Why can’t I snap out of this funk? There must be something wrong with me. Great, another thing I have to worry about. I don’t need this. Why can’t things go my way? Ouch, my neck really hurts. Why does this have to happen now? I should probably do some yoga or stretching. Ugh, I’m so tired. I should start eating better and working out more. Who am I kidding, it’ll never happen. It’s just too hard. I don’t have any discipline. Whoa, where has the time gone? I never have enough time! I just want to crawl back into bed. I wish this day would end.

Yikes! This self-talk would put anybody in a bad mood!

Often, the shift from a not-so-good mood to a good one is triggered by something great happening to us. And suddenly, we’re in high spirits! How did that happen? We interpreted the stimulus we experienced as positive and began having a different conversation in our heads. Our thoughts changed from being down on ourselves to telling us how awesome we are and that things are going our way. We feel more confident and happy, body pain fades or goes away completely, and we have so much more energy. We literally talked ourselves into a good mood!

As I tell my clients, sometimes the shift from negative thinking to positive thinking is as simple as changing the words you use:

Eliminate these words: Replace with these words:
should it would be better
have to I choose to
ought to I could
must what I prefer is
can’t I can
don’t I will
weak empowered
supposed to  

It works best if you write the positive words on post-it notes and place them everywhere…on the dash of the car, bathroom mirror, refrigerator, and so forth. Seeing the positive words will remind you to be aware of your self-talk, and adjust it if it’s not supporting you.

We have the power to change our state of mind in an instant by using positive self-talk to flip our perspective. How empowering to know we don’t have to wait for our external world to show us something positive…we can talk ourselves into a positive outlook!

For added support, here are some other posts that relate to positive thinking and lifting your spirits:

How to Shift Your Unconscious Beliefs and Create the Life You Want

Support Yourself Through Transitions by Changing Your Thoughts

Shifting Your Perspective to Relieve Stress, Anxiety, and Anger

Living in Abundance

When People are Negative, Shine a Positive Light

rays-of-light-1502867-1279x1705We all have to deal with many people in our day-to-day lives. Some people are a joy to interact with and some are….not as enjoyable.

Have you ever had the experience of getting a phone call from someone and cringing because you know you’re going to be trapped listening to an account of all the negativity in their life? Or you see a familiar person and think: Oh, brother. Here comes so-and-so. They’re always so negative, complaining about everything from the weather to politics. Now their negativity is going to put me in a bad mood. Then you play your usual role, listening to his or her complaints, nodding your head in silence or adding a complaint of your own just to say something. Afterwards, your energy is low and you’re blaming the person for bringing you down with negativity that you believe they forced on you.

What if…the person is not really the problem, but rather the problem is the story we are telling ourselves (and others) about the person? Our feelings toward negative people stem from our expectation of them doing something or acting in some way we don’t want them to. Perhaps the complaining is an attempt to connect. Think of a time when you’ve joined in on the Complain Game, or gossiped about or teased someone. What was your motivation for doing that? Did you want to connect with the other person or gain attention? Were you unable to think of anything else to say and this is what “people like them” talk about? Maybe s/he isn’t used to employing positivity for connection and is just doing what s/he knows how to do…complain.

What if you changed your story about negative people in your life? Find something positive about the person and develop that thought. Or just focus on how great you feel and all the things you are grateful for. If you know they have a topic that sets them off on a tirade or pity party, don’t bring it up. There are other ways to show politeness, care, or interest than by asking a person, who loves to complain about their bad back, how it’s feeling! Rather, start a conversation about something that makes them smile or gets them excited to talk about, like how well their child is doing in school or their upcoming vacation. It will be harder for them to be negative if you are inviting them to talk about happy subjects.

Everyone has the ability to be many things, just like you. So allow people that are often negative the chance to show their other (positive) sides. And remember, you don’t have to engage your emotions when a person acts in a way you see as negative. When we get frustrated, annoyed, or irritated by someone, that means we have placed an interpretation or judgment on them. Try being a scientist, detachedly observing the results of a test subject. You can just say to yourself, hmmm, that’s interesting.

You can choose whether to allow someone to “bring you down.” It may take some practice, but the more you reframe your perspective around “negative” people, the more you will realize you have the power to choose your experience of them. How wonderful is that?