Staying Emotionally Healthy
Learn how to have a healthier mindset that will lead to a healthier lifestyle

Carrying around emotional baggage? Here’s how to leave it behind  

by John Brandon / © 2019, Mansueto Ventures, LLC. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

For anyone carrying around emotional baggage, it’s possible that those negative thoughts are defining you as a person.

  There’s one secret to overcoming those thoughts and finding peace of mind.

  The question to ask is this: Is there anything or anyone that does not have safe passage in your mind? These are the thoughts that tend to revolve around negativity. Dwelling on negative thoughts is actually easier, according to science. You have to work harder to think about positive things.

  And that’s where the secret to overcoming baggage comes in. The trick is to start dwelling on completely different thoughts.


Here’s how that works:

  The bounce principle [is] the idea that you can bounce away negativity almost like a Ping-Pong ball you swat with a paddle. It works because of the well-known brain science involved. The more you think about how you were fired from a job, the more you’ll remember the details and recall them easily. You become a person who was fired from a job. It’s a process of thinking those thoughts, remembering those experiences and then becoming that person.

  Leaving the baggage behind means you short-circuit that process. You bounce the thoughts away and replace them with something completely different. Every time you start dwelling on the negative, switch to a positive topic.


Replacement therapy

  I used to have my own revolving door of negative thoughts. I’d dwell on the hurts and slights at work. [But], I learned how to resist the urge to let [all of] that define me.

  In my case, I decided to think about success with mentoring others and how my advice and counsel helped them. It’s amazing to discover [what] a constant flow of positive thoughts will build up. You start a new process: You think about what you did right, you recall those memories more easily and then you start changing. You become a person who is good at mentoring or resolving conflict.

  From there, you can grow and learn—and find freedom.


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