FACT: In 2005, the National Science Foundation estimated that our brains produce as many as 12,000 to 50,000 thoughts per day. Of those, 80% are negative and 95% are exactly the same repetitive thoughts as the day before!
What’s even more disturbing about this mental tyranny is that the vast majority of our repetitive thoughts is pure nonsense. We constantly drift into fiction and negativity, dwelling in the past or the future, obsessing about mistakes we might have made, battling guilt, planning ahead or worrying.
Mental stressors form out of our repetitive negative thoughts. The quality of our existence rests on the quality of our internal and external communication. Recent studies show that severe prolonged stress and chronic negative thinking can compromise the immune system. Left unheeded, these stressors may lead to depression, anxiety, panic or nervousness (especially in social settings), difficulty concentrating, irrational anger, restlessness, emotional problems/conditions, and physiological conditions (such as fatigue, weight gain, cardiovascular conditions, digestive disorders, etc.)
“If your self-talk is positive and accurate, you function well. If it’s negative, irrational or untrue, you experience stress, illness and emotional disturbance.”
By the same token, studies also reveal that having a positive life orientation (being satisfied with life, having zest for life, having plans for the future, feeling needed, seldom feeling lonely or depressed) predicts good survival prognosis independently of subjective health. Our thoughts, attitudes, perceptions and beliefs have a direct impact on our physical and mental health. An upbeat attitude can in itself mobilize and stimulate our body’s self-repair mechanisms.
Remember, negative thinking patterns have been shown to lead to adverse physical and mental health effects, while genuinely positive thoughts and attitudes have been found to contribute to physical health and emotional well-being.
Major Mental stressors may include:
- Limiting mental patterns and attitudes (self-criticism, self-judgment, pessimism, etc)
- Limiting emotional patterns (fear, anger, hurt, despair, etc)
These stressors may result from unresolved past hurts/traumas, pressures of work, school, family and other daily responsibilities, sudden negative change such as losing a job, divorce or illness, event such as a major accident, war, assault, or a natural disaster, as well as biochemical, emotional and spiritual stressors.
Once you identified your stressors, it’s time to de-stress to unleash your natural health… here are a few ideas on how to resolve your mental stressors and navigate your way back to natural health and optimal wellbeing:
- Embark on a self-discovery/self-growth journey (through coaching, therapy, workshops, seminars, self-help books/films, etc)
- Practice daily mindfulness meditation
- Incorporate affirmations and affirmative prayer into your daily routine
- Incorporate gratitude practice into your daily routine
- Resolve biochemical, emotional & spiritual stressors (since they may be impacting your mental state too)
To learn more mindfulness, affirmations, journaling, affirmative prayer and gratitude practices, please refer to GET EMPOWERED and My Wellbeing Compass Blog.
Learn more about the stressors in your life that are keeping you from attaining optimal wellbeing:Optimal