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Negative Thinking: The Evil Behind Stress and Burnout

Aug 5, 2008
According to recent research, the average person has a different thought approximately every two to three minutes. Today's work executives suffer especially frequent headaches at the end of their work days. The main culprit in this rash of executive stress and burnout in today's world is negative thinking. Typical work executives spend so much time thinking and subconsciously listening to each of their separate thoughts that the negative mental banter that is allowed to filter into their conscious minds becomes detrimental to their well-being.

Such negative thinking is triggered by seemingly harmless acts like:
* A brief conversation with your boss

* A comment that was overheard

* An e-mail that you read
The human brain triggers negative thinking through comparing our abilities and qualities against co-workers and friends. We also tend to criticize our own decisions and bad judgement and look down upon others for their own shortcomings.

It is this kind of negative thinking that will surely cause stress and burnout over time. So, what can be done to counteract these thoughts?

Just Do It
You've heard the famous slogan "Just do it." It reiterates the fact that once you have stopped long enough to take the time to think about your actions, that internal mechanism that triggers negative thinking has been turned on.

Executives and others in the work force must teach themselves to think like an athlete and turn off that internal second guessing switch. The extra time taken to give your attention to that brief negative thought is all that is needed to give your competitors their winning edge.

The result is a lost game or a blown deal that floods your mind and body with stress that surely will lead to burnout in a very short time. Go with your instincts and ignore the critical voice that causes that moment of hesitation.

How many times have you sat through a meeting with the boss only to take nothing but negative feedback away from the experience? Is the main problem often due to the lack of support from our superiors, resulting in an unhappy and unhealthy work environment?

What about overhearing or being involved in a conversation with co-workers that is basically a complaint session and self pity party? The bottom line is that morale in the work place suffers from the spread of negative thinking. The result is stress and eventual burnout. Negative thinking begins within each of our own minds, so it is there that we must begin to seek the solution.

In many cases, the true culprit behind the feelings of dissatisfaction and self doubt lies in our own style of negative thinking. Many of us tend to pick up on the negative comments and attitudes of others and exclude almost everything else, including all of the positive and uplifting points that have been made.

Take Action
Office life involves enough stress without each of us allowing our own thoughts to creep in and make things worse. Avoid that negative thinking and turn your office stress and burnout into a more positive experience for both you and your co-workers. Remember each day to ask yourself, what do you think?

Once you have become aware of your negative thinking style, you must take charge of your thoughts and keep them in check. Otherwise, you will slowly sink into a pool of doubt and low self esteem that you will surely drown in.

The true key to success on the job lies in developing and maintaining a positive mental attitude. Don't leave your thoughts and decisions to chance. Stop your negative thinking and start making positive and healthy decisions that will aim you in the right direction.
About the Author
Liz Labrum, Master NLP and hypnosis practitioner, teaches business owners and executives how to turnaround stress.
Visit www.think-rightnow.com and complete the free assessment Are you suffering from Burn Out?
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