Search Results for: affirmations

Affirmations That Work and Affirmations That Don’t Work


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I hate to tell you this but you’ve probably been led astray by most of the self-help experts out there regarding affirmations.

Affirmations only work if they are tied to a dream and a goal that is grounded in reality.

Let me give you an example.

Let’s say you are studying to become a Certified Public Accountant. If you follow the advice of the self-help experts, they will tell you to create the following affirmation:

“I am a CPA”

The experts say such an affirmation will serve to reprogram your subconscious mind into believing you are a CPA and, thus, your subconscious mind will push you to taking action that will lead to your becoming a CPA. It will somehow magically inspire and motivate you to become a CPA.

Unfortunately, that’s bad advice. It’s bad advice because that affirmation creates an internal conflict between your conscious mind, which is grounded in reality, and your subconscious mind, which is fed a vision of the future you.

Your conscious mind knows you are not a CPA, so it does not accept the programming.

As a result, your conscious mind will not accept that affirmation. OK then, what will it accept?

“I am studying 2 hours every day to become a CPA”

This affirmation works because it is tied to a dream and a goal that is grounded in reality. The dream is becoming a CPA and the goal is studying every day. That goal is achievable. It’s not unrealistic. Your conscious mind will accept this affirmation because it believes that it is possible for you to realize your dream of becoming a CPA, so long as you study for 2 hours every day.

This affirmation also serves as an accountability partner. If you say the affirmation every day, it serves as a reminder that you need to study in order to realize your dream.

With this affirmation, your conscious mind and subconscious mind now work as a team in order to make your dream a reality. There is no conflict between your two minds.

The Physiology Behind Success


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There are three parts of the brain:

  1. Brain Stem
  2. Limbic System
  3. Neocortex

All three parts of the brain are connected through a series of nerve fibers. The subconscious mind is found in the brain stem and limbic system.

The conscious mind is found in the neocortex.

Intuition, that little voice inside your head, is found in all three parts of the brain.

Brain Stem

The brain stem is the oldest part of the brain. It is sometimes referred to as the Reptilian Brain, the Reactive Brain or the Instinctive Brain. At one time, it was the first and only part of our brain.

The brain stem connects to our spinal cord which branches out to form our central nervous system.  It is primarily made up of the Medulla Oblongata and the Pons. The brain stem controls all of your autonomic processes such as breathing, heart rate, swallowing, and organ function. It prompts hunger, your sex drive and the fight or flight mechanism. There is no thinking involved with the brain stem. It exists to ensure your survival.

Limbic System

The limbic system is the second oldest part of the brain. It is sometimes referred to as the Emotional Brain. It is where all of our emotions reside and takes part in memory storage, both long-term and short-term. It includes the following components:

  • Amygdala – Memory and emotions.
  • Hypothalmus – Muscle vibrations and internal temperature. This is why you shiver when you are sick. The hypothalmus increases body temperature to kill bacteria. Muscle vibrations generate heat to kill bacteria. The hypothalmus also controls appetite and hormones.
  • Thalmus – Sits right next to the Basal Ganglia. Affects touch, pain, temperature and muscles.
  • Hippocampus – Where short-term memory is stored. During sleep, it will move short-term memory to long-term storage in the neocortex.
  • Olfactory Lobe – Triggers smell. This is why smell sometimes evokes emotions. They both are connected in the limbic system.
  • Recticular Activating System – Vets the sensory information you take in. Most unimportant sensory information is blocked out by the recticular activating system.
  • Cingulate Cortex – Creates Mirror Neurons that are critical to developing new skills and for survival. These mirror neurons program children to mirror the behavior and emotions of their parents, good or bad. It is sometimes called the Monkey See, Monkey Do process.
  • Basal Ganglia – This is where habits are stored. The basal ganglia acts like the hub of a wheel for neural pathways created in the neocortex. Habits are formed when you repeatedly use certain neural pathways. The brain will create a hub inside the basal ganglia and link to that often used neural path. The hub stays there forever. That is why habits are hard to break. It takes 18 to 254 days for the brain to create a hub in the basal ganglia and, thus form a habit.
  • Neocortex – This is the newest, most unusual part of the brain. It is found only in mammals. It is most of your brain. Fully 5/6ths of our brain mass is made up of the neocortex. It has the most neurons – 40 billion. It is sometimes referred to as the Thinking Brain, Higher Brain, Conscious Brain, Cerebrum or Cerebral Cortex. It is responsible for learning, long-term memory, thought creation and decision making. It is comprised of the four lobes: Parietal, Frontal, Temporal (vision) and Occipital (vision), the Amygdalae and the Corpus Callosum – a bundle of nerves that connects the two hemispheres of the neocortex.  It takes in and processes all sensory data.

Wealth Creation Programming

When a thought or action is coupled with any powerful emotion, the brain automatically creates a highly charged neural pathway which becomes permanent. These permanently stored emotionalized thoughts act like software programming in our neocortex.

When you repeat an emotionalized thought or action over and over again, the neural pathway created in the neocortex then creates what is the equivalent of a neural spoke (like a spoke on a wheel).

The neural pathway, by virtue of this neural spoke, is then linked to a newly formed neural hub (again, like the hub of a wheel) in the basal ganglia. This is how habits are formed.

Once formed, a habit stays with you forever or until you break the old neural spoke link by forming more powerful, alternate habits (i.e. it goes away only when you form new, similar, but more powerful habits).

The repeated emotionalized thoughts, which eventually become habits, reprograms your mind. They create the foundation of your belief system. If you create a belief that you will be poor or that you will never be rich, that programming sticks and will direct your behavior in such a way as to ensure you are forever poor or never rich.

Repeating a behavior over and over again will eventually become a habit. If that behavior is bad, such as watching T.V. for hours or overeating, it sticks and the effect is wasting valuable time or obesity that can lead to heart disease or diabetes or any number of detrimental health issues.

The good news is that your belief system can be reprogrammed through this same process. If you change your repetitive emotionalized thoughts you can reprogram your mind.

Similarly, by changing your emotionalized actions and repeating them over and over again they will eventually become habits which will alter your behavior.

Wealthy, successful people reprogram their minds for success by using a number of reprogramming tools and strategies:

  • Practiced Gratitude – Every day give thanks for any good things that have come into your life in the past or the present. Try to find at least one good thing that happened yesterday and give thanks for it. Practiced Gratitude is like software that reprograms your brain. Once this programming is accepted by the brain, through repetition, it becomes a daily habit and will actually create new permanent neural pathways inside your brain. These new neural pathways then go to work directing your behavior in such a way as to cause the creation of more things to be grateful for. It changes your behavior from bad behavior to success-oriented behavior in order to draw in more things to be grateful for. You become a success-seeking GPS.
  • Practiced Optimism – Practiced Optimism means not allowing any doubt thoughts even a second of life. It requires that you monitor your thoughts and when one flashes in your mind you stop yourself and replace the doubt thought with an optimistic thought. “I can’t” become “I will”. “Nothing ever goes my way” becomes “everything goes my way”.  When you Practice Optimism every day you are creating new neural pathways that will eventually become habits. Once they become habits, they then go to work directing your behavior in such a way as to create success. Much like the Practiced Gratitude Rich Habit, you become a success-seeking GPS.
  • The Future Letter – Write a letter to yourself from the future about how incredible your life is. Be lavish in your details about the home you live in, the car you drive, the ideal job you have etc. Read this letter every day for a month. After a month revise it and repeat the process of reading it every day. The future letter works by agitating the brain into altering your behavior in order to create the ideal life you persistently think about every day.
  • Visualization – Create a pictorial Vision Board of all of the things you hope to accomplish and have in life. Keep adding to it every so often. The brain thinks in pictures. The Vision Board is the perfect software to feed the brain. By viewing your Vision Board every day you are reprogramming your mind and creating new neural pathways. Once these pathways become habitual thinking, the brain will then go to work to alter your behavior in order to obtain those things that are on your Vision Board.
  • Daily Affirmations – Daily Affirmations are repeated daily software programming that agitate the brain by asserting something that is not currently true about yourself. Saying “I weigh 135 pounds” every day, when you clearly weigh 180 just pisses off the brain. If you keep repeating this affirmation the brain will eventually seek to alter your behavior in order to get down to 135 pounds. You may find yourself eating less, eating healthier, exercising more. Once the brain accepts the affirmation as reality it then forces you to change your behavior. You don’t have a choice. In order for affirmations to work they have to be tied to some goal. Goals are only goals if they are 100% achievable and require some action. Otherwise they’re wishes and the brain cannot make wishes come true. The brain isn’t magical. It doesn’t manifest things out of thin air. It’s an organic computer. Its real magic is in altering your behavior, by directing you to perform an action that will allow a goal to be realized.
  • Living in the Present – Have you ever been at a party or on vacation, on a golf course or in a bar and thought about nothing but work, family problems, financial problems, etc.? If you have, you’re not alone. Many people fall into this Poor Habit. When you allow worries to intrude in on what should be a Happiness Activity, you lose the Happiness Event forever. It’s just gone. Happiness Activities are the key to overall happiness. The more you have, the happier your life will be. It is critical, therefore, to make a habit of Living in the Present. When you find yourself worrying about something, while engaged in one of these Happiness Activities, you need to stop yourself and tell yourself “just enjoy the moment”.  If you make a habit out of this, eventually you will find yourself worrying less and you will also find yourself happier. Not worrying and Living in the Present gives your brain a breather. Living in the Present is good brain management and will allow you to employ all of the incredible powers of the brain. It relaxes your brain and you are able to think clearer when you have to.

My mission is to share my unique research in order to help others realize their dreams and achieve their goals. If you find value in these articles, please share them with your inner circle and encourage them to Subscribe. Thank You!

You Cannot Succeed With a Negative Mindset


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When negative thoughts dominate your thinking, you shut down or stifle the amazing powers of your prefrontal cortex, your brain’s highly evolved and very powerful executive command and control center.

The prefrontal cortex is the most advanced part of the human brain. It’s incredible power is derived from it’s connection to other parts of the brain. The prefrontal cortex uses spindle neurons (neurons with a long axon and long dendrites) to connect to the limbic system and the brain stem.

Because of this master connection, the prefrontal cortex has access to the treasure trove of information that exists throughout the entire brain.

Negativity shuts down or interferes with this master, brain-wide connection.

When you are in a negative mindset, the amygdala, part of the limbic system, overpowers the prefrontal cortex.

Example: Sometimes car accident victims go into shock. When the police or emergency service personnel arrive at the scene they are trained in dealing with individuals who are in this state of shock. Those in a state of shock are unable to communicate with the outside world. This is because they are still under the complete control of the amygdala, which has effectively shut down the prefrontal cortex and taken control of the brain. It’s a survival mechanism, intended to  eliminate the need to ponder what to do in emergency situations. The amygdala takes the prefrontal cortex offline, and automates what you do in emergency situations. It is the seat of your fight or flight control system. It’s there for a reason – survival during life threatening emergencies.

Obviously shock is the extreme effects of the amygdala taking control of the brain and shutting down the prefrontal cortex. But, a negative mindset does the same thing, albeit, in a watered-down sense.

A negative mindset allows the amygdala to subordinate the prefrontal cortex, effectively cutting off or short circuiting prefrontal cortex access to other parts of the brain.

Negativity hands over control of your brain from the prefrontal cortex to the amygdala, thus muting or disabling your prefrontal cortex.

When your prefrontal cortex is disabled, you are operating without the most powerful, most evolved part of our brain.

Success is hard, even with your prefrontal cortex operating at full capacity. But success is impossible when your prefrontal cortex has been disabled by negativity.

This is why it is no coincidence that so many self-made millionaires are often described as having a very upbeat, optimistic, positive mental outlook.

Positivity unleashes the incredible powers of the prefrontal cortex, thus increasing your odds of success.

In order to put an end to negative thinking, you must make positivity a daily habit. Here’s how:

  1. Meditation
  2. Positive Affirmations
  3. Five-Year Future Journal
  4. Vision Board
  5. Gratitude List
  6. Love


  • Sit in a chair and get comfortable
  • Close eyes
  • Feel your eyes relax, then your whole head, then your neck, then your shoulders, then your chest, then your arms, then your waist, then your legs and then your feet
  • Take thirty deep breathes and see the numbers in your head. Let all thoughts drift by one after the other
  • Visualize your big dream coming true. Visualize all of your goals being realized. Visualize your ideal life, with your ideal home, ideal job, your income, your good health. See yourself happy and successful
  • Ask for help in overcoming any obstacles that are in your way
  • Open eyes and say “I am happy”

Positive Affirmations

Affirmations need to be in the present tense and represent a future state of being. For example: “I Am our company’s #1 salesman”.  Affirmations only work when they are tied to your goals or your dreams.

Five-Year Future Journal

This is an entry you write in your Journal, if you have one, that is five years into the future. It lists all of the major goals you accomplished over the past five years, the things you acquired during that period, the wealth you accumulated during this period etc. It paints a picture of your ideal life, five years from now.

Vision Board

Your Vision Board is a visual representation of all of the the things you desire in life. Each dream you desire is represented by a picture.

Gratitude List

Each day write down at least three things that happened yesterday, that you are grateful for. Gratitude is the gateway to positivity. It shifts your thinking from lacking to abundance by forcing you focus on what you have, not what you lack.


Love is the most powerful positive emotion. When you make a daily habit of utilizing this very powerful emotion, like a muscle, it strengthens your positive mental outlook. Express love as often and as frequently as possible. The more you “love” the more positive you become and the less negative you become.

My mission is to share my unique research in order to help others realize their dreams and achieve their goals. If you find value in these articles, please share them with your inner circle and encourage them to Subscribe. Thank You!

Habits That Make You Happy


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That feeling we call happiness is actually an elevation of primarily three neuro-chemicals – dopamine, seratonin and norepinephrine.

Dopamine naturally increases whenever we experience positive, good, upbeat events. Dopamine increases motivation, creative thinking, memory, problem solving and enthusiasm.

Serotonin naturally increases whenever we are around people we love or care about and experience love, compassion, friendship, etc. Serotonin is a natural mood stabilizer. it helps reduce depression, anxiety and chronic stress.

Norepinephrine naturally increases whenever you become excited about something. Norepinephrine increases arousal and alertness, promotes persistence, also enhances memory, and increases  your ability to focus.

The elevation occurs when these neuro-chemicals rise above a baseline. Each individual has their own happiness baseline. Leading experts on happiness have found that this happiness baseline is genetic, meaning hardwired into your DNA. Some people, therefore, experience happiness easier than others, depending on their happiness baseline.

But what if you could be happy most of the time? What if I told you that you could consistently elevate these happiness neuro-chemicals above your baseline and experience happiness more often?

The trick is to engage in daily habits which have the effect of increasing the daily production of dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine.

So, what habits boost these happiness neuro-chemicals?

  • Daily Aerobic Exercise – Aerobic exercise is a happiness activity because it contributes to an overall feeling of well being. Aerobic exercise releases endorphins (form of norepinephrine), natural painkillers that promote an increased sense of well-being and make us feel “happier”.
  • Daily Learning – Our brains are hardwired to learn. When we learn something the brain rewards you with specific neuro-chemicals, such as dopamine, serotonin and brain-derived neurotrophic factors, all of which make us feel happier.
  • Relationship-Building Activities – The latest science on happiness (Harvard University Longitudinal Study on Happiness) indicates that the more close relationships you have, the happier you are. Volunteering, networking, team sports activities, club participation, mentoring and groups you participate in will help increase the number of close relationships you have.
  • Practiced Positivity – Expressing gratitude daily, daily positive affirmations and reading something inspirational creates a positive mental outlook, which elevates serotonin.
  • Meditation – Mediation helps increase the production of serotonin, calming the mind and reducing stress.
  • Pursuing a Dream – Pursuing something meaningful or something you are passionate about is like hitting the trifecta – you elevate all three neuro-chemicals at once.
  • Pursuing Goals – Like pursuing a dream, the pursuit of goals triggers the release of the three primary happiness neuro-chemicals.
  • Spending Time With Family and Friends – Spending time with those you love or care about boosts serotonin and engaging in family or friend-related activities also boosts dopamine and norepinephrine.
  • Engaging in a Hobby – Finding something you love doing will increase dopamine and norepinephrine.

Three Cs To Avoid


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I’m not a big fan of affirmations but there is one affirmation I use every day and it’s this:

Never Criticize, Condemn or Complain

Each one of these Poor Habits drags you down, creating a negative mindset.

You want to avoid them like the plague.

They have the opposite effect of a magnet – pushing people away from you.

You want to be a magnet for people, not a deflector beam that pushes people away from you.

Those who constantly criticize, condemn and complain are negative, toxic people who must be avoided at all costs. They will drag you down with their negativity.

Plus, because they are constantly offending others, if you are associated with these toxic people, you too will be labeled as toxic and that will negatively affect your ability to build relationships with others.

Toxic people spread their negativity like a virus throughout their social network. And they are very easy to identify because they – Criticize, Condemn and Complain.

Rich Habits Poor Habits Episode 51 | Rich Habits Part 3

The gulf between Rich Habits and Poverty Habits is staggering.

If you’re well off already, chances are you already adhere to most of these Rich Habits.

Integrating the ones you’ve neglected will push you further.

But be assured: If you’re doing fine now without minding these principles, it’ll catch up to you.

Some of the differences between rich and poor are obvious, while others are a little more surprising.

Here are the most important Rich Habits you can take up to reach and maintain your wealth potential.

1. Avoid toxic people


We are only as successful as the people we spend the most time with.

Of wealthy, successful people, 86 percent associate with other successful people.

But 96 percent of those struggling financially stick with others struggling financially.1

If you want to end your financial struggles, you need to evaluate each of your relationships and determine if they are a Rich Relationship (with someone who can help you up) or a Poverty Relationship (with someone holding you back).

Start spending more and more time on your Rich Relationships and less on your Poverty Relationships.

Rich Relationships can help you find a better job, refer new business to you or open doors of opportunity.

2. Don’t give up

Those who are successful in life have three things in common: focus, persistence and patience.

They simply do not quit chasing their big goals.

Those who struggle financially stop short.

3. Set aside the self-limiting beliefs holding you back light bulb idea leader think smart clever failure motivate thought

If you’re hurting financially, you’ve probably told yourself some of these untruths before: Poor people can’t become rich. Rich people have good luck and poor people have bad luck. I’m not smart. I can’t do anything right. I fail at everything I try.

Each one of these self-limiting beliefs alters your behavior in a negative way.

Almost four out of five wealthy people attribute their success in life to their beliefs.

Change your negative beliefs into positive affirmations by reading lessons from the greats of personal development, like Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie and Jim Rohn.

4. Get a mentor

Among the wealthy, 93 percent who had a mentor attributed their success to that person.

Mentors regularly and actively participate in your growth by teaching you what to do and what not to do.

Finding such a teacher is one of the best and least painful ways to become rich.

If you know your goals, find someone who has already achieved them.

You’ll be amazed by how many people want to lend a helping hand.

5. Eliminate “bad luck” from your vocabulary

Those struggling financially in life have a way of creating bad luck for themselves.umbrella-1588167_1920

It’s a byproduct of their habits.

Poverty Habits, repeated over and over are like snowflakes on a mountainside.

In time, these snowflakes build up until the inevitable avalanche—a preventable medical problem, a lost job, a failed marriage, a broken business relationship or a bankruptcy.

Conversely, successful people create their own unique type of good luck.

Their positive habits lead to opportunities such as promotions, bonuses, new business and good health.

6. Know your main purpose

It’s the last Rich Habit, but it might be the most important. chess-game-leader-investment-strategy-win-success-negotiate-300x235

Those people who pursue a dream or a main purpose in life are by far the wealthiest and happiest among us.

Because they love what they do for a living, they are happy to devote more hours each day driving toward their purpose.

Odds are, if you are not making sufficient income at your job, it is because you are doing something you do not particularly like.

When you can earn a sufficient income doing something you enjoy, you have found your main purpose.

Believe it or not, finding this purpose is easy.

Here’s the process:

  1. Make a list of everything you can remember that made you happy. success risk wealth
  2. Highlight those items on your list that involve a skill, and identify that skill.
  3. Rank the top 10 highlighted items in the order of joy they bring to you. Whatever makes you happiest of all gets 10 big points.
  4. Now rank the top 10 highlighted items in terms of their income potential. The most lucrative skill of all is worth 10 points.
  5. Total the two ranked columns. The highest score represents a potential main purpose in your life. Presto!

As you can see, the differences between rich and poor are simple—sometimes intuitive—but not insignificant.

Aim to take up all 16 of these habits, and you’re almost guaranteed to become better off.







Motivational Habits


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Self-made millionaires are self-motivated.

They create daily routines, or habits, that help them stay positive and motivated. Below are examples of some of the Motivational Habits that self-made millionaires use to stay motivated:

  • Write a script of your ideal, perfect life.
  • Read your ideal, perfect life script.
  • Re-write your ideal, perfect life script.
  • Create a Vison Board of the things that exist in your ideal, future life.
  • Look at your Vision Board and daydream.
  • Express gratitude for three things that happened yesterday. Gratitude gets you in the right farm of mind. It is the gateway to a positive mental outlook.
  • Read something inspirational. This could be a book, blog or article.
  • Surround yourself with upbeat, enthusiastic people. They will keep you infected with an upbeat attitude.
  • Create positive affirmations and review them periodically.
  • Engage in some activity, like exercise, which makes you feel good about yourself.
  • Engage in some fun activity.
  • Create a list of goals you would like to accomplish in life.
  • Review your list of life goals.
  • Create a Victory Log.
  • Review you Victory Log.
  • Listen to uplifting music.
  • Listen to uplifting podcasts.
  • Watch an uplifting TEDx talk.
  • Reward yourself – prior to engaging in a task, specify a post-task reward. This could be a treat, dinner with friends, a beer, etc.
  • Meditate.

Self-made millionaires create motivational routines that help them stay in the right frame of mind so they can engage in activities which help them move forward in life. Motivational Habits are your personal triggers which help keep you motivated.

A Father’s Day Letter to His Children on Living Happy, Successful Lives

Dear Kids:

It’s Father’s Day. Usually I’m the one getting the cards and letters from you guys but I thought I’d turn the tables & send each of you a letter instead, as my days of parenting are coming to an end. All of you are fast becoming adults. I want you to know I loved every minute being your dad. Each of you has given your mom and I so much joy, happiness and laughter. I would gladly do it all over again but time marches on. How we spend that time determines if we have happy, successful lives or unhappy, poor lives and that is why I am writing this letter to each of you. I want each of you to have happy, successful lives. But happiness and success just don’t happen. You need to create happiness and success by doing specific things. Here’s a list of some of those things that will help put you on the track towards happiness and success: [Read more…]

Confidence is Overrated


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I cringe every time I read an article about confidence. The majority of the time, these articles offer strategies that will help you build confidence which will help you succeed in life. Such strategies run the gamut from positive affirmations, role playing in a mirror, associating with other confident people, adopting confident body language, creating victory lists, and on and on. Just type in confidence in Google and the first 20 hits you’ll see will be articles on how to boost confidence.

What I learned from my five-year study of the wealthy, particularly the self-made millionaires, is that confidence comes and goes even for the rich and successful. It’s like the high tides and the low tides rolling in and out of the ocean. One day you’re riding high with confidence and the next day your filled with nothing but doubts. It doesn’t matter if you have $100 in the bank or $100 million. Confidence is never a permanent thing.

You gain confidence when your actions and decisions succeed in moving you closer to realizing your dreams and your goals. You lose confidence when your actions and decisions keep you stuck or force you backwards, further away from your dreams and goals.

On any given day, Elon Musk is brimming with confidence when one of his SpaceX rockets reaches space or wallowing in misery and self doubt when one blows up.

Confidence is not a driver for success. Rather, it is the byproduct of it. You gain confidence when you succeed and you lose confidence when you fail.

If you lack confidence, welcome to the club. Confidence is not something you can will into existence by staring at a mirror and repeating positive affirmations. Confidence does not create success. Success creates confidence.


The Negative Thinking Poor Habit


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Negative thinking is a Poor Habit.

When you make negative thinking a habit, negative things eventually will materialize in your life.

The brain, specifically the subconscious (Brain Stem and Limbic System), goes to work behind the scenes to bring about that which you are constantly thinking about.

It does this through intuition. Intuition is the way the conscious brain (Neo-Cortex) communicates to you what the subconscious wants you to do. If your thoughts are negative, the intuition you will receive will be destructive. It will nudge you to do something that will bring about the negative things you are constantly thinking about. When you are in a negative place, intuition can be destructive.

This is why it is so important to be aware of our thinking and stop all negative thoughts in their tracts. This is also why it is so important to consciously put positive thoughts in our minds through the use of daily affirmations and visualization techniques. The conscious mind cannot hold onto two thoughts at the same time. so, the key to getting rid of negative thoughts is to think about something positive. This pushes the negative thought out of the mind and prevents the subconscious from doing any damage.