This might surprise you (especially coming from me), but positive thinking is not the ideal way of thinking. The ideal – which is not easy to reach and takes a lot of effort – is peaceful thinking. Said differently, your ultimate goal should be to have a quiet mind, not a positive one. Who wants to be positive all the time?
Having said that, positive is certainly better than negative. Here’s how I would classify the different types of thinking, from worse to best:
1) Victim mentality.
2) Negative thinking.
3) Positive thinking.
4) Peaceful thinking.
So how does one reach peaceful thinking? The first step (like most endeavours) is awareness; being aware that you’re not where you want to be. Too many aren’t even at this stage.
The second is to make a conscious decision to make a change in the way you think. Then take action.
And here’s the action you should take: work on being present in the current moment. Most of us are either re-living the past, or planning the future. We are almost never in the present moment. To grow spiritually, improve your consciousness and attain a peaceful mind, you must break this pattern and be mindful of the present moment.
This is literally called “mindfulness,” defined as “a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations…”
I work very hard on being mindful, but I’d guess I’m still living 70% of the time in the future. I’m always planning, but I’m getting better at being more present.
The best way you can improve your mindfulness is by meditating. I cannot tell you how powerful meditation is. It’s the tool for focusing on the present moment. By the way, by “meditation” I also mean prayer. Just make sure you’re not rushing through your daily prayers, but praying purposefully and mindfully.
Let me add that like all new big endeavours, this takes time and effort, especially if you’re used to a victim or negative thought pattern. Therefore I would recommend you get help.
You can do this in two ways. First, by finding a spiritual guru or coach. Why go through such a difficult journey on your own, right? The other option is to re-programme your thinking by reading, listening to and watching spiritual material. Here are 5 resources to help you get started:
It’s worth mentioning that you’ll never really “reach” your destination. Even the most enlightened souls have to continually
work on their mindfulness, and they never stop meditating.
You might be asking Why the hell should I bother with all this? Well, you don’t. If you’re truly happy and content, and completely satisfied in the kind of world you live in, then don’t do any of what I’ve just mentioned. But if you’re not quite happy with your life at the moment, and would love to reach a peaceful mind, give this a try, what have you got to lose?
Thanks for taking the time to read this and talk to you soon.