Counsellor Sarah Barr shares steps to take the next time someone's negativity affects how you feel.

By personalising other people’s negative thoughts or opinions we are allowing them to control how we feel.

Q. So how can we stop this?

A. By changing the way we think!

We don’t have any control over what other people do or say, but we can control how we feel.

Below are a few questions to ask yourself the next time someone makes you feel sad or annoyed.

1. Did they mean to make me angry or upset?

2.  Who’s problem is it? Does it really have anything to do with me or is it their own issue? and are they taking it out on me?

3. Does this person’s opinion reflect everyone else’s opinion?

You can decide if you will react or respond to this person.

By reacting you will probably be quite emotional and in turn use up quite a bit of energy by reacting to them.

By responding you will feel calmer and more in control. Responding can be harder. It may require a few deep breaths and time to think about what you’re going to say.

Ultimately YOU decide how much of this person’s behaviour is going to impact on how you feel.

Here are some techniques that may help:

1. Thought Stopping Technique.

Imagine a door.
Visualise the wall around the door, including any light switches, pictures etc.                                    Once a negative thought enters your mind, imagine putting it behind the door and slamming the door shut.
Imagine the sound of the door shutting close.

2. Process for Detachment.

You have the control to stop whatever it is you are thinking. To let go of any negative thoughts that are playing on your mind try asking yourself the following:

1. What has just happened?
2. How is it going to affect my mood?
3. Is it my responsibility?

If you make the decision to let the thought go and not allow it to ruin your day and control your mood, you are taking your control back.

3. Write Down How You Are Feeling

Writing down how you’re feeling is a great way to understand your feelings. It helps you understand and process what has just happened or has been said. Read it back and then rip it up!

I can be contacted via my Facebook page for further information or to book a free consultation.

Take Care ~ Sarah.