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Ways to Reframe your Negative Thoughts: We all Have Them

So much of the way I work with my clients is based on how we view ourselves and how we view our experiences. Everyone experiences self-doubt and negative thoughts. These heavy ideas will only hold us back and keep us down. It is time to change!

The first basic principle is that events or situations do not have inherent meaning; rather, you assign them a meaning based on how you interpret the event. This can be very difficult to do, especially if you have experienced something traumatic. Changing the meaning of a trauma and taking the power away from the trauma is part of the healing process.

The second principle is that every thought has a hidden “frame” behind it. The frame is your underlying beliefs and assumptions that are implied by your thought.

The final principle is that there is a positive intention behind every negative thought. That inner voice of yours that expresses negativity is only doing so because it wants to help you in some way. That doesn’t make the thoughts right or acceptable of course, but it does mean that your inner voice is not an enemy to be resisted.

Follow the steps below to reframe your negative thoughts!

1. Catch yourself- We develop habits on putting ourselves down that we do not even realize our negative thoughts. Make a conscious effort to pay attention to your thoughts.

2. Challenge your negative thought- Where did I first hear that statement? Is that my voice or did someone else say that to me? What evidence makes that statement true? Key question: What evidence makes that statement false?

3. Reframe that thought- Reframing is a way of viewing and experiencing events, ideas, concepts and emotions to find positive alternatives. Use the evidence, from step 3, to make the statement false.

4. Prove your positive reframe!- Live that thought. Absorb and find all the evidence that proves your thought!

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