How To Overcome Negative Thoughts
If you have ever struggled to overcome negative thoughts, let me share the good news - you’re in the right place. Here’s why.
This blog post is going to show you how you can overcome negative thoughts without using affirmations, meditation techniques, or trying to be “positive” - as these things have never led to lasting change (believe me, we’ve tried).
- Why You Need To Understand How Humans Operate First
- It’s What’s Below Ground That Creates What Is Above Ground
- How Humans Operate
- Where Do Negative Thoughts Come From?
- How To Change Negative Thoughts
- Solutions To Change Negative Thoughts
Why You Need To Understand How Humans Operate First
I want you to imagine yourself walking in nature when you stumble upon a beautiful apple tree. As you stand next to the trunk of the tree, you look up and admire the delicious red apples. How did those apples grow? Did it happen by luck or chance?
It’s What’s Below Ground That Creates What Is Above Ground
Of course not. The apples were produced from the roots. Another way of saying this is “the roots create the fruits,” coined by T. Harv Eker in his book Secrets Of The Millionaire Mind. This means that the roots are the cause and the fruit is the effect.
In nature, it’s what's below ground that creates what is above ground. The invisible creates what is visible. Your internal world, what you can’t see, creates your external world, what you can see.
Life is cause and effect. However, when we have a problem in our life we have been programmed to focus on the effect. When we feel stuck, confused, indecisive, or a lack of purpose in our personal and professional life, we tend to focus on the fruits - our work situation.
We try to switch jobs, careers, make more money, go back to school, start a business, or change business ideas in hopes that if we just change our external world that our internal world will change.
This was me. I hated my serving job so I quit. I tried to start 5 different businesses in hopes that I would find the thing that was going to bring me money, freedom and fulfillment.
After each one failed, I tried another. I did email marketing, tried flipping Airbnb properties, did a stock investing course, health coaching and a consulting business for adventure companies.
Finally, I looked at myself in the mirror and admitted that what I was doing wasn’t working. I still had no clarity, purpose or direction.
Then I came across the principle that it’s the roots that create the fruits. I felt that I had got struck by a lightning bolt, but instead of getting fried, I woke up.
To quote T. Harv Eker… “As humans we are a part of nature, not above it. Consequently, when we align with nature and work on our roots, our inner world, our life flows smoothly. When we don't, life gets rough.”
It’s time that we come back down and get in contact with reality. Humans are a part of nature. We are not separate from it. The same laws and principles that govern the wind, sand and stars are the same laws and principles that govern human beings.
If you really want to change the results you experience in life, you must change the roots - the invisible - your internal world.
Still don’t believe me?
You’re most likely reading this right now on your phone or computer, the thing you can see. How is that made possible? It’s made possible by the things you can’t see, namely WIFI and electricity. What is invisible is far more powerful than anything that is visible.
It is time that we get back to our true nature and align with the very laws in which we came from. Walk into any mountain forest on earth and admire the fragrance and color of the trees. You know without even questioning it that the soil is nutrient rich and the roots are strong.
We Live In A Cause & Effect World
I mentioned earlier that we live in a cause and effect world. This means that your relationships, work, money, and health are an effect.
Have you ever heard someone say that their job, boss, coworkers, business idea, or lack of money was a problem? Let me bring you a great truth: a job, other people, or lack of money is never a problem.
People don’t have work problems, they have personal problems that show up in their work.
Let me make this point clear because I understand what it was like to have an extremely difficult boss. I remember when I had negative thoughts about my boss. Eventually, I came to realize my boss wasn’t the problem.
The problem was my negative judgements, beliefs, and ways of thinking towards him.
Instead of judging my boss, I had to look at myself in the mirror and ask, “what does staying at this job working for him tell me about myself?”
Secondly, not everyone shared the same feelings I had towards him, therefore, who is the one that needed to change?
When you type a document on your computer and hit print, you get a physical copy of the document.
Imagine noticing an error or something you don’t like on the document, so you take a #2 pencil and try to erase it. That doesn’t work, so you buy one of those big erasers and try to remove it. That still doesn’t work, so you buy the best book specializing in erasing. Now you’ve got the best “external tools.” You apply the suggestions in the book and guess what?! It’s still there!
This is because the problem can only be solved in the program, the internal world.
How Humans Operate
So if the problem lies in the program, our internal world, what can we do? The first step here is to understand how humans operate.
I want to introduce you to an extremely important formula that can have the power to change your personal and professional destiny. It determines how and why you experience the results you get in life. It looks like this…
T → F → A = R
Your thoughts (T) lead to your feelings (F), your feelings lead to your actions (A), and your actions lead to your results (R).
So the results that you experience in your personal and professional life are created first from your thoughts, which lead to your feelings, and then determine your actions.
Here’s how this works.
Let’s use an example of a guy who is working in an unfulfilling job and wants to do work that aligns with his life’s purpose.
However, he struggles with the thoughts that he’s not good enough. Because he has these thoughts, it makes him feel unconfident, and because he feels unconfident, he procrastinates on switching to something more meaningful. Therefore, the results that he experiences in his life is that he stays in his unfulfilling job and never reaches his full potential.
Here is the example broken down in the formula:
(T) Not Good Enough → (F) Unconfident → (A) Procrastinate = (R) Stay In Unfulfilling Job
Thoughts → Feelings → Actions = Results
But where do these thoughts come from?
Where Do Negative Thoughts Come From?
The answer is found in the programming, the information you received in the past.
Starting as a young child, sources of programming would include parents, siblings, friends, teachers, authority figures, culture, and namely, society.
Let’s use culture as an example around the topic of work. In the United States, you are groomed from a young age to go to school, get a college degree, find a “safe and secure job,” work forty plus hours and five days a week, show up on time, and retire around age sixty-five. If you don’t follow this trend, you’re considered a risk taker or a free spirit.
In my final semester of college, I had to do a student teaching placement to receive my college degree. I was completely miserable. As soon as I finished the last day, I made plans to move to New Zealand and left home six months later.
My grandfather wrote me a letter I’ll never forget, telling me that he “couldn’t believe the careless view I had on life.” My aunts and uncles said I was crazy. People thought I was going to be broke on the street. It was the best decision I ever made in my life.
In Costa Rica, where I’m living now, the beliefs and ways of thinking around work are completely different. The lifestyle here is “Pura Vida,” which translates to “pure life.” Just this morning out in the ocean, I ran into Topo, a guy who owns the local surf shop in town.
It was about 9:15 in the morning and I said, “hey Topo, don’t you open at nine?” He responded, “Man, you need to relax. Can’t you see the waves are pumping?”
Eating With Your Left Hand
Beliefs are not right or wrong, true or false. In India it is disrespectful to eat with your left hand, in America you wouldn’t think twice about it.
When we live life on an unconscious level, we become trapped, completely unaware that we are operating from our programming, not reality.
You never chose your beliefs, your language, morals or where you grew up. These were never a conscious choice. Think about that for a second. When you grew up, you were not given the opportunity to choose your beliefs. They were formed for you.
You were taught by your parents, your community and society how to act, think and what to believe. You don't even have a choice on what you learn in school, everything has been chosen for you.
You learn good behavior or bad behavior. Ideas were put into you that this is the right way and that is the wrong way. Don't do this, do that. And when you do the “right” things, you’ll be rewarded so you can “succeed.” When you do the “wrong” things, you’re punished for being a “failure” or not following the rules.
Do you see how people spend their entire waking life chasing someone’s version of success, all while having the deeply entrenched fear of failure?
Because we grow up with the fear of being punished or failing, we act in certain ways and pretend to be what we are not. We put on a mask so we can please others, our teachers, friends, and in the process, become someone we are not.
When you grow up as a child and want to go your own way, you get put into place. This is called the process of domestication, just like an animal. And through this process of domestication, we surrender our freewill and our individuality.
Eventually, we just become a copy of our parents beliefs, society's beliefs, and our friends beliefs. We have lost the ability to think for ourselves.
People wonder why they continue to self sabotage themselves. Here’s why: when someone wants to go a different route in life or walk their own path, they feel internal conflict such as guilt, shame, or selfishness. This is because they judge themselves according to a fictional belief system that was programmed into them.
So to really understand how humans operate, let’s upgrade the formula.
P → T → F → A = R
Your programming (P) leads to your thoughts (T), your thoughts lead to your feelings (F), your feelings lead to your actions (A), and your actions lead to your results (R).
If you truly want to discover your soul purpose, do incredibly fulfilling work that maximizes your authentic abilities, and reach your full potential, you have to change the program.
The goal now is to wake up and reclaim your power. Reclaim your individuality. Reclaim what makes you unique.
This is accomplished through one way only: reprogramming.
How To Change Negative Thoughts
For the reprogramming to be effective, there are four levels of change one must pass through.
The First Level Of Change: Awareness
To solve any problem, you must first know the problem exists.
The way this is done is by bringing clarity to the three different types of programming we experience.
The first type of programming is called verbal programming.
This is represented by what you heard growing up and throughout your life around the topic of work.
Did you ever hear things like…you’ve gotta grind, you can do what you love or make money, get a safe and secure job, you can’t have your cake and eat it too, you have to work hard to make money, the 9-5 grind, most businesses fail, entrepreneurship is risky…
Verbal programming is extremely powerful.
In one of our community calls in our 2.0 Transformation Program, one of the guys was feeling frustrated that every time he felt he was making growth towards his entrepreneurial dream, he would come crashing back down.
I asked him to tell me what his deepest desires were. He shared with me that his real motivator for getting his business off the ground was to become a leader, help others through his business, and ultimately to feel confident in who he was.
He said whenever he would start feeling confident, he would wind up self-sabotaging himself. I asked him to explain to me what he really believed confidence meant. He responded that he believed it was a form of cockiness and that real leaders aren’t cocky.
Upon further examination, it was uncovered that he grew up with his parents repeatedly telling him to “never show confidence, it’s just a way of bragging and being cocky.” Because of this, he formed the belief that confidence is a bad thing.
This corrupted programming remained in his subconscious mind for over thirty years! No wonder every time he started to feel confident and step into a true leader to help others, he self sabotaged. Remember, actions are determined by feelings.
By following our proven process to reprogram himself at the foundation, he went on to close his first ever $4,500 contract and then eventually line up $100,000 of work for the upcoming year.
The best part is, he’s doing the work he was meant to do, he’s happy, and his wife and kids get to see their dad become a true leader.
The second type of programming is called modeling.
Modeling is represented by what you saw - the habits, actions and relationships people had around the area of work.
Did you see…the majority of people in jobs they dislike, your parents working long, unfulfilling hours, statistics about businesses and start-ups failing, most people following the traditional college/9-5 route, and/or work as a source of stress?
This is important information because of the saying, “monkey see, monkey do.”
Modeling is one of the most important ways humans are influenced and learn. A powerful example of modeling is when you begin to hangout with a new friend group. Within a matter of weeks, your speech, dress, and taste in food has been completely altered as if by a stroke of magic!
To give a personal example, when I was growing up my father was an extremely hard worker. We come from an Italian immigrant background, where hard work was the way of life. He believed in hard work and putting in long hours.
We grew up in a lower class family which required my parents to put in a lot of hard work to put food on the table and give us an amazing childhood that I’ll forever be grateful for.
However, this point is not to be missed. As this form of programming remained in my subconscious mind without my awareness, I wound up grinding in everything that I did too.
Before Scott Rowley and I became business partners, he was my first life coach. In one of our sessions together, he said, “do you realize that everytime I ask you how your business is going, you respond ‘it’s a grind?’”
I had no clue. This is the power of a good coach. In two months working with Scott, I went from feeling completely stuck and burned out to replacing my serving income and loving life. The best part is, I stopped grinding.
The third type of programming is called specific incidents.
Specific incidents have a profound effect on our belief system because they are a memory with a strong emotional bond attached to it.
Is there a specific emotional incident in your journey that you can recall that has left a big impact on the way you view yourself and work?
Some examples from guys who we’ve worked with include…trying to start your own business and failing, getting fired from a job you cared about, creating a passion project and having someone you respect tell you “this is stupid,” watching your father try to become an entrepreneur and fail…the list goes on.
The important point here is to break the negative link between the event and the way you view yourself, life, and work.
For example, we worked with a guy who had an extremely unhealthy relationship with his father after a nasty divorce. They hadn’t spoken in two years due to the things he believed were true about him.
At the same time, he had a dream of helping others through career coaching, but he was constantly bogged down by negative thoughts and emotions.
When we uncovered how this specific incident was affecting him and began the process of reprogramming, he started to experience unbelievable shifts in his life.
Not only did he switch his professional life to something more meaningful, but he realized that what he believed about his father was not necessarily true and decided to call him to hear his side of the story.
He described this moment as “life changing.” Now he has completely rekindled the relationship with his father and recently told me that they speak every day and are planning a vacation together.
The Second Level Of Change: Understanding
Becoming aware of a problem is great, but if we don’t understand how something is affecting us then we don’t do anything to change it.
The only reason humans do anything to change is because the problem either gets so painful it forces them to change, or they foresee the potential pain and change ahead of time.
The first example of this is a cigarette smoker who develops lung cancer and is faced with the reality that if he doesn’t stop smoking, he will soon die.
In that instant, he stops smoking.
The next example is how life insurance is sold. Although perfectly healthy, the husband buys life insurance because of the future pain he could bring upon his family in the event that if he dies, he would leave his wife and kids empty handed.
For a human to change anything, we need to understand the consequences.
The Third Level Of Change: Separation
This is arguably the most important level of change.
Here is a groundbreaking truth: your thoughts are not you.
The only reason we suffer over negative thoughts is because we identify with them. For example, you experience a thought that you don’t like. Then, you identify with it and label it as “negative.”
This identification happens entirely by choice. We know this because a different person experiencing the same thought would not care.
Ponder the power of this statement before continuing to read.
Thoughts are neither positive or negative, only human beings label them as such. Thus, we suffer.
When we identify specific thoughts as negative, this creates the desire in human beings to cultivate “positive” thoughts. Unbeknownst to the positive thinking movement, the desire to cultivate positive thoughts only increases the power of negative thoughts.
Trying to be positive or create positive thoughts keeps people on the hamster wheel of mental and emotional imbalance.
Please understand this before you move on…
If you want to change your thoughts, you don’t change them directly. Rather, you change your relationship to them so that you can live from true choice in the present moment rather than being run by programming from your past.
The Fourth Level Of Change: Reprogramming
The only thoughts that stay within your subconscious mind are the thoughts that have been emotionalized.
Meaning, the reason you continue to experience negative thoughts is because you attach a negative emotion to them, so consequently, they stay within your subconscious mind.
Rather than trying to fight how our subconscious mind works, the way to change our thoughts is to work with our subconscious mind.
The mind should be a servant, not a master.
If you want your mind to serve you, you need to know how it works. This process is something we call “reprogramming.”
If you want to reprogram your mind on a deep and powerful level, I invite you to head on over to our free mini-course where I’ll walk you through the process of reprogramming your subconscious mind to achieve lasting results.
The reprogramming process is broken down into 3 steps…
1. Identify Your Natural Operating State (NOS)
Your Natural Operating State is having a clear sense of who you are and what your true calling is.
It’s knowing what your key skills, strengths, and passions are and how you’re leveraging them to get paid to do what you love.
Men who are successful at getting paid to do what they love and live a life of uncompromising freedom are playing their own game - they are authentic to the core.
What does authenticity really mean?
It means being crystal clear on what makes you unique. Rather than allowing negative thoughts to confuse us on who we are, we simply need to follow proven principles that help us understand who we are at the core.
2. Define A Massively Transformative Vision (MTV)
Now that we understand who we are and what makes us unique, we define something called a Massively Transformative Vision.
This unique process will give you the clarity, direction, and confidence to know what the end goal is and why you’re working towards it.
The mind needs to have a mission. This is the nature of how the mind works. When you think about negative thoughts, you get negative thoughts.
This is because what you focus on expands.
If you want to create new, supportive thoughts that help you evolve to the next level of your life, you need to give the mind what it needs - a mission. In our case, a Massively Transformative Vision.
3. Create Your Path To Prosperity
The last piece of the reprogramming process is called the Path To Prosperity.
We break down your Massively Transformative Vision into a simple-to-follow plan of action that allows you to build serious momentum and stack wins - which we call #newsummits.
You know you’re moving toward your dreams because you’re seeing them become a reality.
Here’s why this is critically important…
In order for your subconscious mind to believe something as true, it needs proof.
This is the importance of creating a plan of action that turns your vision into a reality. As you begin to start getting small wins, you can confirm these wins in reality. Thus, your subconscious mind realizes that your vision is becoming a reality. Small wins are proof and will continue to serve you more supportive thoughts, emotions, and actions.
This is why affirmations remain largely ineffective. You are trying to confirm something that is not real…and your mind knows it! Even worse, you know it (I was there too).
This reprogramming process is what we teach in our men’s 2.0 Transformation Program, and we’ve seen it yield powerful results over and over again.
Solutions To Change Negative Thoughts
We hope you found tremendous benefit in this article. If you want to learn how the reprogramming process works so you can change your negative thoughts, discover your purpose, and get paid to do what you love…
We’ve got two solutions for you below.
2. Book Your Free 1:1 Clarity Call - want a proven methodology, an epic community of high-performing adventurous men, and expert mentorship to help you discover your purpose and get paid to do what you love? Book your free 1:1 clarity call right now to learn more.