Raise your hand ✋ if you replay arguments or stressful events over and over in your head. #TellTheTruth
For example, you get into a disagreement with your partner and then several days later, while in the shower or driving or even grocery shopping, you start thinking to yourself, “Who the hell do they think they are?” Or, “I should’ve said…” Or even, “Next time this comes up, I’m going to…”
Or maybe you see something disturbing on the news and you can’t get it out of your head. You keep thinking the worst, like, “What if that happens to me? Why is this world so crazy? I feel helpless.”
Or, if a coworker rubs you wrong or discredits your hard work, as you’re falling asleep at night you relive every moment of the interaction over and over again.
If we aren’t careful and don’t pay attention to what we’re dwelling on, we can live in an alternate universe (in our mind) that has us on the defense, on edge, and ready for battle. When in reality, we should be enjoying the present moment like a warm shower, or jamming to some tunes in the car, or spending quality time with loved ones. Hopping into the present moment is a powerful mindfulness exercise that will help retrain your brain, increase awareness, and help you focus better.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone. We all do this!
But that’s not all… If you truly want to be happier, not only should you stop replaying the bad, you should start reliving the good.
“Stop replaying the bad and start reliving the good.”
I’m telling you, you can radically improve your quality of life by doing this. This mindset shift is exactly how I rebuilt and redefined my life after my husband was killed. All I could see was pain, anger, injustice, fear, etc… At first, I was consumed with replaying how he died, but then it went beyond that – I would replay EVERY SINGLE bad thing in my day. When I finally took responsibility for my healing, one of the first things to change was my mindset. I made a firm decision to stop replaying all of the bad moments in my day and start reliving the good.
It could be the feeling of accomplishment when I finished a project for work, or laughing and playing with my kiddo, or spending time with a friend. I would pick something good from every day and visualize every detail. If it was a rough day, I would visualize good things to come to generate more hope and anticipation.
Basically, I trained my brain to savor the good.
I could feel the growth, the healing, the shift happening, and people around me were noticing this change, too. I no longer felt beat up, like a victim, or mad at the world. Instead, I was enthusiastic, happy and had a renewed peace of mind.
Here’s my point, if you keep staring at the bad all you’re going to see is bad. But if you flex your superpower, the power of choice, and shift your focus to see the good all around you then you’re entire world will change.
It takes practice and patience, but the reward of more happiness is totally worth it!