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Positive Thinking/ mindfulness doesn't work for some?

(13 Posts)
Notagainmun Wed 02-Mar-16 12:46:40

Other people lying and letting you down, debt and stuck in job I hate but can't leave means that if I'd so hard go change my mind set. I just can't seem to get it. I read all the books, done the app exercises bug J am still a miserable old bag.

mcoy Wed 02-Mar-16 13:00:37

I think some people try to create a different reality rather than accepting the one they live

I don't think you can create a different reality until you have accepted the one you live

So no point saying to yourself you have a job you love if you have one you hate.

But you do have a job. So just start with accepting that you are employed, you have an income that helps towards paying off your debts

You can't magically change your circumstances through positive thinking or mindfulness. You can only make it feel a bit better by not resisting the reality of it

AliceScarlett Wed 02-Mar-16 13:20:37

Mindfulness isn't positive thinking.

Change what you can, accept what you can't.

No point trying to think positively about an unpleasant situation...

TheSinkingFeeling Wed 02-Mar-16 13:44:18

Of course. Different things work for different people. Mindfulness seems to be the new CBT: a cheapo fix-all cure; some people find it invaluable, for some it might not do a thing.
Don't beat yourself up about it; something else might help you.

TheSinkingFeeling Wed 02-Mar-16 13:46:21

And there's always SLS too

lavenderdoilly Wed 02-Mar-16 14:02:51

I was prescribed mindfulness for chronic pain by consultant because all they had to offer was more pain killers. Assumed it would be a waste of time and a load of bollocks. It taught me how to face horrible stuff not how to ignore it. I still need painkillers but not as much and not as often. It's not a miracle cure. It doesn't make stuff go away but it does help you face it with more strength.

There is a difference between the following positive statements about a less than perfect situation:-

I have a wonderful life
Things are a bit shit right now but I can cope with it

Google the Stockdale Paradox
"This is a very important lesson. You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end—which you can never afford to lose—with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be."

Jim Stockdale survived years of confinement and torture at the hands of the North Vietnamese.

In other words you have to be honest about the situation you are in but believe you will find a way through it. Trying to convince yourself the situation isn't bad doesn't work. So I think positive thinking works better in a framework of honesty about where you are now.

Having said that, no one therapy or solution works for one person and no one has failed if a particular approach doesn't work for them.

Would focussing on clearing your debt or similar help e.g. MSE Debt-Free Wannabe forum

PortobelloRoad Wed 02-Mar-16 15:03:46

Mindfulness and positive thinking are not remotely the same thing.

You need to focus on one at a time. Mindfulness is about being present and letting thoughts come and go without judging.

mcoy Wed 02-Mar-16 15:24:47

I didn't think OP was saying they were the same thing, rather that they don't seem to be finding success in the currently popular self help methods?

maggiethemagpie Wed 02-Mar-16 19:23:08

Paradoxically, acceptance is the first step to change. I spent a few years in my 20s doing all that positive affirmation crap and nothing changed I just felt worse. When I finally accepted myself/ my life I began to change and I/my life are now very very different from ten years ago.

CaptainCrunch Wed 02-Mar-16 19:40:29

Positive thinking is potentially as harmful as negative thinking. Successful CBT helped me think realistically.

PortobelloRoad Wed 02-Mar-16 20:07:25

Positive thinking done properly is/can be helpful. Many people are under the impression that to think positvely is just to rose tint everything and ignore your problems, it's not, it's much more about having an overall positive attitude and sunnier outlook whilst remaining in touch with the realities of the situation. About finding gratitude and silver linings and things and being "can do" rather than falling into a pit when you're overwhelmed.

You're right Captain that "rose tinted" positive thinking is just as bad as negative, especially concerning things like "well if I imagine I don't have cancer I won't have cancer anymore" and similar attitudes.

It's been misinterpreted and turned into something it's not supposed to be.

MrsJayy Wed 02-Mar-16 20:54:01

Mindfullness and positive thinking is a bit different accepting the things you cannot change realising your feelings and moving forward positive thinking is i have a shit job but least i have a job saying that if you are genuinely are unhappy it is difficult no see any positives.

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