thinking right in the “wrong” times

Thinking Right in the Wrong Times, how to think during hardships

In the previous post, I discussed How Thinking is a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy. In this post, I will talk about Thinking Right in the “Wrong” Times.

By “Wrong” times I mean difficult times. I mean the times we make wrong by saying or feeling that “this shouldn’t have happened” or “this is not right.” Time that FEELS wrong. Nothing is right or wrong in itself, we make it so by use of language. (Topic for another post, I guess)

Reminder

Before I continue, I just want to point out that it is completely okay to feel sad, angry, frustrated, and/or any other negative emotions under unusual circumstances. It is only human to feel these emotions. I, in fact, recently struggled with a difficult period because of which this piece took longer than expected to publish. In a way though, this experience did give me more perspective on the topic.

I am in no way suggesting we shouldn’t feel these emotions. In fact, I believe it is best to feel these emotions and let them flow instead of avoiding feeling them or bottling them up. Bottling feelings can later lead to unwanted outbursts of emotions and can also cause physical illness.

Thinking Right

As shared in Basic Nature of Thoughts, our thoughts influence how we feel and act. So it is extremely important to think right; to have the right mindset even during the most difficult of times. 

We all have tough times in our lives. We all go through hardships. How we deal with hardships, however, is what makes for the quality of our life.

“Pain is inevitable; Suffering is optional.”

Gautama Buddha

We can’t always control what happens in our life but we can choose how we perceive and respond to it.

Notice I used the words “choose” and “respond”. I stress this because we have the power to consciously pick the best response for any given situation — a response that inspires us, serves us — and not go with our default way of being and thinking. It is advantageous to have a hopeful outlook. A hopeful perception of the future makes for a happy present. 

In the long run the pessimist may be proven right, but the optimist has a better time on the trip.

Daniel L. Reardon

And that’s what matters right? Life is a journey, not a destination.

Quality of life depends not on what happens, but on how we view and deal with what happens.

Not take anything from anyone’s struggles. But I invite you to look at it like this:

What has happened, has happened and what’s happening is happening. Your worry and complaining about it won’t change it, no matter how much you don’t like it. Excessive worrying can, in fact, lead to anxiety and hinder chances of progress. I know this is easier said than done but it is what it is.

What can and will change things are your actions. It is only when you do something about the situation, will the situation change. You altering your perception, choosing a different point of view to look at things from is also an action, and oftentimes the first step to change.

“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” 

Wayne Dyer

We are used to thinking a certain way. It has taken years of conditioning to think as we think now, so it will take some time and work to alter our default thought patterns, but it can be done. I have done it and I continue to do so.

“If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten.”

Marc Ostrofsky

*Break The Pattern*

**Tip**

I read somewhere that our mind cannot entertain 2 different emotions or nature of thoughts at the same time. We can either feel happy OR sad, Grateful OR ungrateful; not both.

In any situation and especially during hardships, Gratitude is one of the easiest ways to lift yourself up and feel good.

No matter what our life-situation is, we can always find something to be grateful for.

“Let us all rise up and be thankful,
for if we didn’t learn a lot today, at least we learned a little,
and if we didn’t learn a little, at least we don’t get sick,
and if we got sick, at least we didn’t die;
so, let us all be thankful.”

Gautama Buddha 

If you practice gratitude, the quality of your life will improve dramatically. You will experience the state of happiness and fulfilment more often.

One book that helped me incorporate the practice of gratitude in all possible situations is “The Magic” by Rhonda Byrne. I highly recommend you read this book.

It is not joy that makes us grateful; it is gratitude that makes us joyful.” 

Brother David Steindl-Rast.

Conclusion

It is completely normal to feel emotions such as sadness, frustration, anger, etc. it is better to feel them than to bottle them up.

We all go through tough times; the quality of our life is dictated not by what happens but by how we perceive and respond to what happens.

Complaining and worrying about a situation won’t change the situation. The only way to change any situation is to do something about it.

Choosing to view a situation from a different perspective is also an action — often times the first step to change.


Now that I have covered 
The Basic Nature of Thoughts
How Thinking is a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy
– The importance of having the right mindset during difficult times,
In the next post, I will be sharing 5 Simple Ways to Think Consciously.

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Write to you soon. Until then, take care and be safe!

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