Negativity Bias – Reacting to Events - Colourstory Publishing
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Christine Sherborne

Location Gold Coast
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Negativity Bias – Reacting to Events


Negativity Bias – Reacting to Events

Have you noticed when you receive news or an event happens, you tend towards what could be wrong or go wrong? Even with happy news, negative thoughts can creep in and spoil a joyous moment. People are programmed to react to danger as a primordial response. This bias toward the negative is simply natural.

Our first instinct is self-preservation and begins within the deepest parts of our brains, it means that we have to work harder to overcome damaging reactions. This is especially true in our relationships, the bad sticks in our mind more than good actions we receive from partners. With our children, the adage that we need to give five to ten times more positive encouraging comments to overcome one put down remark is true. Also, bear in mind that one big good action isn’t as effective as several small affirmative boosts.

In any experience there’s an element of good, even if it’s learning a life lesson to benefit us in the future. The worst events can give us empathy toward other people suffering the same losses. Take time to examine the facts when something happens, good or bad. Not jumping to conclusions is helpful, giving ourselves time to whittle down to the basic facts can stop wrong ideas in their tracks. How often do you immediately choose any number of disasters that could happen, and ninety- nine per cent of them never do?

Take a moment to examine your thoughts. Give yourself chance to enjoy good moments before sabotaging them with problems that could arise. Write down in a journal good moments to reflect on later and to instill them in your mind. Taking an active role in remembering good times and things makes you grateful and will enable your bias to shift away from an automatic negative response.

Each day take time to ‘smell the roses’ to notice each word, action, smell or feeling that creates good feelings. Store up sayings that inspire you and bring them to mind when you begin to slide down the feeling bad path. Bring to mind funny events from your kids or friends that gave you a real belly laugh.

When you hear a negative comment, instead of taking it to heart, realize the remark says more about the person who gives it than you. Imagine a light shower of rain cleansing it from your brain. Send a good thought to the person who hurt you, they’re obviously in pain if they feel the need to lash out.

The negative bias can be overcome with these simple actions. Most importantly, take the time to notice and examine your feelings, then choose the better response. Live in the moment as much as you possibly can, letting past or future worries take care of themselves.

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