Everyone has met someone like it. An individual who just exudes negative energy. Everything they say is either a complaint, a criticism or just downright demoralizing. You probably think to yourself, "What could it be that makes this person so miserable?" You probably just wish you could tell them to lighten up and stop being such an insufferable bore. But it seems that even on the brightest days this person can find the only cloud in the sky and dampen the sunshine.
But what if I told you that it's not just that one person who does such a bang on job of finding the negative in everything? What if I told you that EVERYONE does it just the same, some are just better at hiding it.
You likely do it whenever you encounter an obstacle or a problem in your life that causes you distress. Say you studied all night for a test in the morning, and when you get it back, you FAILED despite all your time spent reviewing the notes. You probably think "I can't believe I did so bad on this test. I'm so stupid" or "That test was way too hard! Now I'm gonna fail the whole course and I'll have to retake it, I won't graduate on time and my GPA is gonna tank-", and so on and so forth. It's normal to think this way, because most people do. We're programmed this way. But the whole time that you're thinking this way, all you're doing is fixating on the negative aspect of the situation. This fixation causes constant worry, anxiety, stress, sadness or anger, depending on what happened and your reaction to it, and this in turn causes you to feel worse than you already did. The problem with this negative mindset is that it forces you to ruminate on a bad situation and extend the period of feeling negative instead of searching for a lesson or a solution. The reason we feel pain, or anxiety, or stress is not because we have experienced a stressful situation or have something in the future we need to worry about. It's because we take a negative situation, or a possible future situation we might experience, and we replay these thoughts of what could go wrong in our head over and over and over until you feel the heat of worry burning a hole in the back of your skull.
The way you speak, both to others and yourself, controls the type of feelings you have and the energy you give off to others. Next time, if you fail a test or a paper, instead of criticizing yourself and wallowing in self pity about how woe is me, try instead reflecting on yourself, asking what it is you did wrong and how you can learn from it. Use the words that run through your head to find a solution to a problem, and learn something as a result of it, instead of repeating the negative feelings instead. All too often we find ourselves living either in the future, worried about what may happen, or in the past, sad or upset about what already has. But neither of these things are affecting you right now! The only thing that can affect you is the PRESENT moment, the one you are experiencing right now. If you try to stop and worry about it, it'll already be gone. All we can do is take the lessons we've learned from the past, and use them to become the best version of ourselves that we can be, so that we may be prepared for anything to come in the future.
So, stop using those words in your head to stress yourself out, and instead use them to help you, to reassure yourself, and to give yourself the best coaching you can on how to go out every single day, live in the moment and live to the best of your ability. YOU live for YOU, and no one knows you better than yourself. So use that knowledge, and give yourself the ability to consistently improve and do the best that you can, so that each moment you experience is the best one yet. Then, you will have nothing to fear.