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Old 20-02-2008, 03:20 PM   #1
Mighty Midget
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Default Learning to think positive thoughts

First, this is a serious topic, so please don't spam or troll or anything like that. If you have a constructive reply, by all means post it but if you don't have anything constructive to say, please don't say anything at all and I'll ask the mods now to keep this topic tidy.

Ok, I have come to some sort of realization. I'm pretty much consumed by negativity. I'm at the point where the negative no longer is negative but "neutral" or even positive. It's as turned upside down and inside out as it can possibly be. It's definitely not what I want and I'm looking for ways to turn this back on the right track. In short I have to learn to be really positive and not just fake positivity as I have done far too often.
It's going to be a tough one. I looked up on the web ways of changing my thoughts into something more positive and constuctive, and (I'm not kidding you here) my head hurt from what I saw as a load of hooey and I was actually looking for excuses to not look at the sites. I mean, it is like I'm protecting my negativity in some way even though I should do the exact opposite. Ok, I found these 10 "rules" that are supposed to lead to more positive thinking. What startled me was I knew I have failed every one of them and when I read them I constantly looked for the negative side of it: "It's going to be a really good day", "Yeah? It's cloudy, probably gonna rain soon", "set a goal and complete it", "yeah? what for?" you get my drift?. I'm serious about this, it is that bad, it's no good at all and I need to do something about it. Problem is I have no idea what I can do as I honestly can't say I trust I'm able to be positive without darkening it with my negativity..

I'd appreciate any reply or discussion around this subject.
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Old 20-02-2008, 03:58 PM   #2
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It seems you have some irony, that could help, or it could help to lead you to depression... I'm serious. Maybe you should starting with using the irony in a more "happy way"

That's the first thing I thought while reading your post, I hope that could help... maybe later will come to me a useful idea to help you really...
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Old 20-02-2008, 04:14 PM   #3
Eagle of Fire
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Go see a psychiatrist. Seriously. That's what they are paid for.

If you see everything in such a dark way, you are probably in the first stage of a depression. Which can be either good or bad. Depression is one of the most common mental illness in today's world, and one of the most often overlooked. Second thing could be a burnout.

Anyhow, if you really want to get serious about solving this problem, seek professional help. Otherwise you might get over it, but it sure won't be a "serious" solution and might come back anytime.

If you think it's not a serious problem enough to see professional help, read books about people who succeeded in life and positive subjects. You can't switch the way you're thinking in a day or two, it will take time.
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Old 20-02-2008, 04:41 PM   #4
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Something I figured out in my young life is that I am best in the situations of highest tension that demand my greatest effort and concentration. The situations that leave the least opportunity for me to ponder, since my brain needs all my "thinking power" for concentrating.
It surpresses the "Oh no, what could possibly go wrong?"-thoughts.

Another thing for me is structurising. Working or acting step by step leaves less space for going astray(mentally, that is).

And you need people to talk or even discuss. They might tell you, that you are acting fine but other things form the problem in your situation.

And maybe EoF is right. See a mind-doc, who analyses the stuff togehter with you.
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Old 20-02-2008, 05:27 PM   #5
Mighty Midget
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Thank you guys. I really appreciate the feedback.

About a depression, this isn't a depression in it's early state. I have had it and (it seems to me now) been nursing it and protecting it for about 25 years now. I have seen pros but they pretty much gave me two thumbs down saying I'm too old to ever see any changes, that anyone my age with a long term depression will never get rid of it and that I can live the rest of my life on various pills. That is not an option. However, this odd doc I got in contact with recently has a different opinion and I'm currently waiting to hear from him about any therapy.

I just came back from one of my walks and while walking it struck me how similar my reaction to seeing those positive thinking sites were to my phobic reactions. I was, to put it simply, scared of challenging my negativity, like I have kind of grown to believe my negativity is helping me in any way. I know that is a lie but at the same time I still sort of believe negative thoughts are good for me in some obscure way. At the moment I have to repeat it to myself over and over again that negativity is a problem, not a solution, and as long as I have to keep doing that it's fairly obvious I'm not out of it yet.

About any irony in the first post: There you go, I have read it again and I don't find any irony there. I have gotten so used to thinking and talking the way I do I don't even realize there was anythng in that post anyone would see as irony. To me it's just "the way it is" if you know what I mean. On using irony the positive way? Much of the same, really, and the fact that I just don't know what positivism is. If Mr. Positive came walking down the street with smileys all over and a huge sign saying "don't worry be happy" I wouldn't know. That is one of the great challenges to me, to learn what positivism means. To me it's just a word with no particular meaning other than it's something I believe I need.

On talking to people. Well, that's a challenge too. When you don't see how your sour or ironic remarks can possibly be seen as negative it's hard to avoid pissing people off. Another thing is I have just recently started the work of changing myself and I have never given this stuff much thought, rather I have ran away from it. Part of what I have to do now is to understand what I'm doing and why I am the way I am. As I said, it's a load of work when I'm almost phobic of looking into myself and running away from myself has become my "natural" reaction. Ok, I see the irony coming: You might have noticed I spent quite a huge amount of time on AB and AR. Before that I spent my time at the pubs. That has always been, I suppose, me running. Also, While running I have been faking a cheerful mood. I don't know, perhaps a bit how I wanted it to be and part what I wanted other to believe. Most probably both. To me, this topic is about talking to others while peeling myself to try to get a better idea of the way I act. I won't use smileys here like I have used in the sb, I need to stop pretending I'm laughing or smiling when I'm not. Talking to others won't do any good if I keep hiding.

I need structure. That I know, but it hasn't been in my thoughts for so long I will have to work on it just to feel at least a grain of structure. It's so long forgotten I don't even know how it will do me good and it's easy to forget about it and just go randomly through the day again. Seeing it mentioned helps a bit there so yeah thanks, that's a good advice.

Just for the record: I'm also visiting this online shrink forum where I have gotten a few words of gospel. I guess I'm at the point where I need to learn about myself for real.
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Old 20-02-2008, 06:51 PM   #6
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Holy $&@#! Oh no you don't! There can be only ONE miserable freak on AB, and that's ME, dude! So bugger off before I unleash my giant wave of whine on yer behind!:notrust:



:amused: j/k
Seriously now, I have some advices for you if you are willing to take it from a guy who is, too, being down under. I'm no shrink, but I know a thing or two about depression, and the world being against you n stuff.
First of all, it is a good thing that you at least realised, that your life is taken over by negativity. It's graet progress. The next thing, there are some question you gotta ask YOURSELF. First of all "Do I want to be negative/depressed all my life?", this is an important question. If you relise that, there is another way besides the way you go now, it will be great. You gotta gather all your strenght and face this question for real. IT will be hard, but you gotta "face your demons", so to speak. When you wholeheartedly decide, that you don't wanna be miserable anymore, you gotta take the first step. Next question "Why am I being miserable / What's the cause?". If you have at least a vague idea about what causing your depression, try to change that thing, leave it or at least try to look at it different, be it your family, life, work...etc. Believe me, the first step is the hardest, it will be hard, very hard. Every inch of your body denies change, but you gotta move forward. If you make the first step, it will all be much easier, and go on it's own. You still gotta work on it hard, but when its set in motion, it will all be better. I know, experience. Oh, and don't let ANYTHING stop you! Its YOUR life, and nobody know better what's good for you than yourself, if you really committed. Getting a phsicologist is good, but he can't do miracles, YOU have to change YOURSELF, and only YOU can do it. I've never been to a shrink in my life, but I think he'll say something like this himself.

Anyway, I don't wanna tell you what to do, it's your stuff, dude. But if you wanna talk about it, PM me, I'll be here.
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Old 20-02-2008, 07:21 PM   #7
Mighty Midget
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Ok, the opening of that post made me smile

ok, like I said, I'm just beginning to realize how much negativity has ruled my life. Up until today I didn't have a clear idea at all about my own negativity but during my walks today I was surprised how I could, with ease, label every thought I had as downright negative. I tried to keep the thought "look for something positive" but it went away before I got a chance to grab that thought. It's still too much what I see as normal.
One important thing you said was that I have to ask myself if I want it to stay this way. I don't. The thing is for now everything around this seems so new and I don't know how to go ahead and when I have lost the belief in myself it's hard to feel a wholeheartedly wish for change. I know I must change but it's hard to dare, if you see what I mean. I guess I need to get a lot more courage and faith before I can say without lying that I really, really want to change, still I kinda know that's what I have to wish for. I mean, for years I have actually told myself wishes are the fastest way to disappointments. I need to build up courage and faith, that's a fact, but I also need to get a feeling of what that actually means. I guess one will lead to another in some way, but I don't see how.

There's one thing I don't quite understand from what you're saying. I get the impression you say the cause for the depression is something outside of me. Like I said, I'm beginning to understand the causes are not outside of me, but inside of me. The causes are the way I coped with or failed to cope with things around me, so the answer will be in me and the way I see everything, myself included. The cause of the depression is my own thoughts and feelings around what happened and they make me behave in ways that only locks me in the depression. To unlock it, I guess I will have to change my entire world view. I can look out to understand a bit of myself but the main thing is that I will have to change. There is a saying that goes "if I'm right and the world is wrong, then I'm wrong and the world is right". That holds more truth and is much more relevant to me, I feel, than I have ever really realized.
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Old 20-02-2008, 07:32 PM   #8
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Ehy there Knut, I'm sorry to hear this, really.
I'm quite sure that my words written in this poor English won't help you much, but you never know.

Like Playbahnosh said you have to change yourself, and only you can do it.
You are strong enough to pass this bad moment, but I don't think you have realized it yet, you are a good person MM...

I think love could help you a lot...really, or maybe God, or a real friend.
I could go ahead for hours, but you are the only one that can do the first step.
Good luck dude.
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Old 20-02-2008, 07:52 PM   #9
Mighty Midget
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Hey Dave, thanks. Your English is far better than my ideas.

About "this moment". Well, I'm sorry, but it isn't really "this moment". Truth is you can take all those LOL smileys I tossed around in the sb and know I was never laughing out loud, more pretending to myself and you guys.

I don't know really, about friends. I keep wasting friendship, getting semi-friendly with the wrong crowd (not any of you guys ) and I'm sick of it. Like in the post above, it takes a lot more courage and faith from me to dare getting friendly with people and love is right out for as long as this continues. The risk of losing friends and loved ones is a bit too great when I know I'm still in the middle of it. I lost very good friends over the years, people who went out of their way to be there, but I suppose their frustration over my eternal negativity, lack of progress and me always looking out for answers chased them off if I didn't went all the way and went apeshit.

About God. I've prayed from time to time, but truth is I lost faith in the mere possibility of a God at a pretty early age. I think perhaps for some, God will be what they call a sensation of coming out of a rut. For the record, I'm an agnostic nowadays I just prefer to see the God myself instead of having anyone telling me there is one.

Anyway, thanks. I still look for the feeling I have made the first step. There's a lot of negativity in the way so I don't really expect me to feel it until I have made several more.
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Old 20-02-2008, 08:44 PM   #10
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MM. I don't know if this has any relation to your situation but I would like to tell you a story.

Almost exactly a year ago I had to resuscitate my son from a nearly fatal drug overdose because he just could no longer deal with his depression. As soon as he was released from the hospital I began working with him on ways that he can improve his life. Things like going back to school or finding a better job etc. He has become very negative and doesn't have the confidence in himself to make the changes that could be the difference. Every positive thing that I try to help him accomplish he always has an excuse for why it won't work or why he can't do it. I'm not sure if the depression has created the self image or if the self image has created the depression. He is terrified of failure and lacks confidence to the point that he has become anti-social. Anyway, what I have learned with him so far is that step one is FAR more difficult than step two. Step two is more difficult than step three and so on. I'm sure that if he could find the strength to make life changes that breed success he would find that success creates good feelings which create more success and so on. The important thing has been to make the initial steps small enough that he will succeed and big enough that he will feel good about them.

Another thing. My son worries and feels bad about the burden he is creating for us, his family. I want to smack the crap out of him every time he says that (not literally). If he could only understand the unconditional love that a parent has for their kids he would probably start to respond better to what I am trying to do. Sometimes I don't know what to do but i do know that I will never give up. I can only hope and pray that I can make a difference.

MM, use the people that want to help you. Don't be ashamed and don't hide from those that want to help. Don't try to bite off too much at one time and create situations in which you have the confidence that you will succeed. You are not alone.

EDIT: Another thing. Understand that there are chemicals in the brain that affect our moods. Depression is a physiological condition. Behavior modification alone isn't always enough. Don't rule out medication as a possible temporary aid in getting your life turned around.
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