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Are your thoughts helpful or unhelpful?

What type of thoughts visit you and leave, which do you invite in to make themselves at home?

Positive thoughts can be unhelpful. Negative thoughts can be helpful.

Sometimes we can get tangled in a web of positive thinking, trying to fight with, challenge or push out negative thoughts. But both can be helpful or unhelpful.

Drinking a bottle of wine and having the positive thought ‘I’m a great driver I’ll be fine’ = not helpful. Same situation, negative thought... ‘I could hurt someone if I drive’ = helpful.

So rather than focus on positive or negative we can consider whether a thought is HELPFUL....

1. Does it take me closer to the kind of person I want to be?

2. Does it help me build the kind of relationships I want?

3. Does it connect me to what I truly value?

4. In the long run will it help me build a full, rich, meaningful life?

(These questions are from The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris, based on Acceptance Commitment Therapy).

If it’s helpful, listen to it. Pay attention. If not, don’t take it seriously, don’t pay much attention. Not every thought is worth your precious attention.

Yoga and meditation can help create space between observer and thought.

Woman sitting on a rock looking off to the right

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