When Negativity Takes You Down a Rabbit Hole

As much as you may (or may not) know about how positive thinking is much more productive than negative, there are times in life when self-doubt or an overall negative mindset sneaks in. It affects most people at one point or another, but it doesn’t have to bring you down.

Woman dealing with negativity in life

Recently, I found myself slipping away from my positive mindset and letting negativity show its ugliness in my life. I knew I needed to press my reset button. I needed to remind myself to get back to living with a healthy, positive mindset.

Going down a rabbit hole of negative thinking can be all-consuming and it doesn’t feel good. Thus, the inspiration for this post.

Whether you are first getting interested in learning how to adjust your mindset to attract good things into your life, or if you simply need a friendly reminder, you found this post for a reason.

Get ready to boost in your mindset and learn how to deal with negativity in life.

Mindset Matters

It’s easy to say that you should try to not let outside circumstances affect the way you feel, but sometimes it can be really hard.

For example, when you find out that your vehicle needs an expensive repair and there’s no money in your bank account, it’s difficult to feel happy. Or when you are frustrated with a relationship or job, it can be a real challenge to not let anger ruin your day.

You may not feel super happy, and you may be feeling angry or frustrated because of some situation in your life, but there is a way for you to feel joy even in rough times.

Nobody is happy all the time. Getting comfortable with the following steps will give you a toolset to help you deal with negativity in life. Use these steps to take intentional action to get back on the path of a happy, healthy mindset – regardless of outside circumstances. 

Overcome negativity message with peaceful beach background

4 Steps to Mindfully Overcome Negativity in Life

Let’s break it down into 4 simple steps that you can take every time you recognize you’re not doing yourself any favors with a less than positive mindset. You’ll know that you need to adjust your mindset when what you’re thinking does not feel good. Now, how to deal with negativity in your life…

1 – Be Aware and Bust Yourself

Be aware when you’re feeling stressed, self-doubt, or like a failure. Recognize that you need to find a way to feel better because you want to improve.

The faster you realize you’re going down the slippery slope of negativity, the faster you’ll be able to talk yourself out of it. Over time, feeling positive becomes a habit because after you practice enough, you’ll more quickly become aware of when your thoughts don’t feel good.

You have a desire to have a good life. Falling down is part of life. Give yourself a break, and then get up and dust yourself off.

Just bust those useless thoughts before they become ingrained in your mindset.

2 – Stop the Momentum – Hurry!

Now that you’re aware of less than optimal emotions, make a decision to stop useless, negative thoughts before they gain momentum. It’s sort of like hitting the reset button.

Thinking negatively about a bothersome situation isn’t going to get you anywhere; it’s certainly not going to make you feel better.

Here’s why it’s so important to change your thoughts before they gain momentum:

Your thoughts create emotions.

You take action based on your emotions.

Your actions give you results (good or bad).

Good thoughts create good emotions. Good emotions help you to take positive actions. Positive actions will give you desirable results.

When you catch yourself in a bundle of negativity or any emotion that doesn’t feel good, there are a few things you can do to help stop the emotion in its tracks or at least make little shifts toward a better emotional state.

How to Stop or At Least Shift Negativity

  1. Get up and move your body. Take a break with the intention to shift your energy; shake off the negativity and allow more positive thoughts to come into your mind. 

    Go for a walk to clear your head. Moving your body is of course good for your physical health, but it’s also really important for your emotional health. 

    Little shifts add up to major traction because you’re slowly moving yourself to a better frame of mind. Move your body, and then come back with a refreshed mindset.

  2. Take a deep breath. Really, take a few deep breaths right now and notice how you feel. You’ll feel just a little better, a little less stressed, and a little more in control. 

    A few deep breaths only take a minute but can make a huge emotional shift. Breathe in…… and release. You got this.

  3. Smile. This sounds crazy but it is not crazy at all. Just like taking a deep breath can give you immediate relief from stress, so can smiling. 

    Even a fake smile will positively impact your mindset. Find this hard to believe? Give it a try right now by smiling. In less than one minute your “research project” will be complete and you’ll be feeling a bit better.

RELATED READING: Why Smiling is Good For You.

The more you practice stopping negative thinking as soon as you become aware of it, the better you’ll become at nipping it in the bud. You’ll train your brain to think more positively and it’ll start to become your more natural way of thinking.

Get clear that you need to stop the negative thought, and you’re on your way to feeling better. 

“You cannot control anything except the way you feel.”


3 – Soothe Yourself into a Better Mindset

Now that you are aware of negative emotions and have stopped the negative talk, it’s time to clean up your mindset.

Choose thoughts that feel good. All the actions in the world won’t help if your mindset is negative. Make small mindset shifts until you feel better.

It’s nearly impossible to jump from angry to happy, so aim for smaller jumps. Go from angry to frustrated, because frustrated feels better than angry.

Get to a point where you’re feeling hopeful. Hope feels a lot better than anger or frustration. It’s not yet happy, but you’ll be well on your way if you can become hopeful. It’s all about baby steps.

Do your best to soothe yourself so you can get to a point where you can feel better. Remind yourself that you’ve been in this place before (I’ve felt like this before) and things turned around and I felt happy again.

Find the thoughts that help you feel better, and words that bring ease into your mind. Here are some general thoughts that can help you soothe yourself:

  • I am doing my best and always learning new things.
  • I am getting better and better all the time.
  • I have a desire for good things and I’m figuring it out.
  • I’m pretty good at a lot of things, and I can do this.
  • I love following my joy.

Recognize you have a desire to have a good life and feel good. You want the feeling of desire and excitement flowing and growing. Find a way to talk about the current situation that feels better. It might not feel great, but leads to feeling hopeful – and then you can inch your way up to feeling satisfied.

Find a blessing in each change you experience, and spend time appreciating each little blessing.

4 – Feel positive emotion. Who doesn’t want to feel good?

It’s from that feel-good place that you can use it like a spring board into better times. When you feel good and enthusiastic, you show up ready to bring good things to every situation.

Positive thinking is the catalyst to taking intentional, inspired action.

The more you think positively about things, the more likely you are to move toward the goal. Have an open mind to opportunity, and be open to seeing how new, better things will come into your  life.

Make it a priority to recognize when you feel good, and keep it going! Let positivity gain momentum and spread to other parts of your life such as family, work, relationships, etc.

Hanging out with like-minded, positive people will help you keep your positive mojo going. Positivity and negativity both are contagious, so pick your friends wisely. But since negative people cannot be completely avoided, always remember that YOU get to decide how you react.

Be proactive. When you feel good, keep the positive vibes going so you can be joyful even when times are difficult.

RELATED READING: DIY Inspirational Home Decor.

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Friendly Reminders to Stay Positively Focused
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You Got This! Deal with Negativity Effectively.

Continue to stay focused on the above four steps and you’ll find yourself taking baby steps toward a more stable positive mindset.

Trust that everything is happening exactly like it should be. Things will unfold at the perfect time.

Believe in yourself and kick self-doubt out of your journey as soon as you recognize it. Anything is possible! Follow your joy and enjoy your journey. 

Please feel free to drop me a comment to let me know your thoughts on rabbit holes of negativity!

Recommended Books
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15 Replies to “When Negativity Takes You Down a Rabbit Hole”

  1. Wow very good article! I have never taken this approach to my negativity. Isn’t it crazy how so many of us succumb to negativity and go down the rabbit hole, even if we constantly tell ourselves it only makes matters worse.

    1. It’s easy to get sucked in, for sure! Having a positive mindset feels so much better that it’s worth the hard work to overcome negativity. Thanks for your input!

  2. Being aware is so important to change. So many people blindly stumble around complaining that everything goes wrong and either blaming it on their bad luck or in other people. And they keep perpetuating that cycle because they don’t stop to examine the own thought process.

  3. Great article & tips on how to change a negative mindset – and they work too! 😊 I’m lucky that I’m an optimistic person but when I do get bouts of negativity it’s great to know how to try and reverse that feeling. Thank you 😊

  4. I think we need to acknowledge that something bad has happened and be okay with not feeling sad or angry. That being said, once we admit our feelings then we can go about making sure the negative feelings does not overtake our lives. I like listening to music when I am down and work on a project. Getting something done makes me feel more in control of my environment and my feelings.

  5. I am crazily the opposite of negative and for me, negativity on the part of others is pretty upsetting. I don’t get sucked in, I get pissed off!

    1. That’s awesome that you don’t accept negativity! You’ve done your work and I bet the payoff is sweet.

  6. This is a really good article … thank you ! I’ve only just found your website through Pinterest . I’m usually a very cheerful and optimistic person but sometimes … and usually this is when somebody who means a lot to me upsets me ! … I just start the spiral into negativity and totally overreact ! I have screenshot your article for next time this happens … thank you so much ! Julia

    1. Congratulations on recognizing you were in a spiral of negativity! Being able to recognize those feelings makes you better able to recognize them and shift to better thoughts faster next time. Thank you for sharing you experience. We are all in this together!

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