Negative thoughts can drain your energy and make it hard to make the effort to change things. They can also snowball.

For example, if you think “I'm not going to get an interview because I'm not qualified enough” you might start feeling negative about yourself and then it’s easy to think “I won't bother at all”.

You can turn this around and think more positively e.g. “I'm not sure I'm qualified enough but I'm going to apply anyway - even if I don't get an interview I'll get some good experience at doing a job application.” This can make you feel more in control and more optimistic.

Activity 

Take a look at these negative statements and how they can be re-worded to make them positive

  • I’ve never done this type of job before > I have relevant skills that I can talk about
  • I can’t do it > I will try to do my best
  • Why do bad things always happen to me > How can I turn this into something good?
  • Why do I always make mistakes > I learn from my mistakes and get better
  • I am rubbish at maths > I can struggle with maths but I am better at other subjects, and that’s okay

Can you think of any other examples that you’ve thought about recently where you could change your mindset?

Top tips to quieten that negative inner voice 

  • Take a long, slow breath in and out to calm yourself if your negative thoughts are spiralling
  • Remember no-one is perfect! Allow yourself tomake mistakes and move on
  • Talk to someone about how you’re feeling whoyou know has a positive outlook, or who is a good listener and will help you work through your feelings
  • Smile! Even if you don’t feel like smiling, faking one can help you feel a little better

Looking after yourself mentally, physically and emotionally 

  • Eat regularly and try to include fruit and vegetables in your diet if you can
  • Unplug from your phone, laptop or social media for a while to give yourself a mental break
  • Find something to make you laugh
  • Have a 10-20 minute nap
  • Do something nice for someone else – it’ll make you both feel more positive
  • Do some exercise, even a short walk around the block can give you more energy and help to clear your head if your thoughts are buzzing
  • Listen to a favourite song, watch a favourite programme, read a favourite magazine