We all have bad or negative thoughts at some time or another in our lives, but if bad thoughts are recurring and affecting you severely then you need to take action to control your focus. Constant worry, doubt or negativity can be caused from mental illness such as depression. It can also derive from side effects of a medication, diet or from being highly stressed. If your way of thinking is affecting how you act around others by changing your mood and behavior, then you need to evaluate the problem. Once you’re able to determine you have a problem, you should troubleshoot to find the best solution. When it comes to controlling a mental behavior you must keep in mind that what works best for some people may not work for you.
Distract yourself when you start to have bad thoughts by focusing on another activity. The bad thought may form when you’re lying in bed or not doing anything. Try watching a movie, playing a sport, reading a book or taking a walk.
Make sure that you get enough sleep each night. Tiredness can also be an underlying cause for your bad thoughts and it’s important that you relax yourself to a peaceful sleep each night.
Try keeping a journal or writing down your bad thoughts. You can do this by simply relaying what you’re thinking to written words or rant about what may be distressing you. This can be a therapeutic way to vent and free your mind of the bad thoughts you’re having.
Talk about your bad thoughts or problems with your spouse or a friend or family member. Make sure to show your seriousness and that you want to share some of the bad thoughts you’ve been having. If you’re able to share such thoughts with someone close it will help to relieve the bad thoughts. The other person will help you to see the brighter side of situations.
Consult a psychiatrist if the bad thoughts worsen and continue. Solutions after a one-on-one consultation could include medication, group therapy, hypnosis and individual counseling (see References).