When you are enveloped in negativity you literally shut down half of your brain. Have you ever read stories or seen pictures or video footage of individuals who are in “shock” following some type of catastrophic accident? In most of those stories, pictures or videos, the individuals all looks like a zombies. They are uncommunicative, unresponsive and appear lost somewhere in space. Their very consciousness seems to be closed off to the world around them.
The reason is that, when you are faced with a life or death situation, the fight or flight process of the subconscious mind (limbic system and brain stem) takes over as the command and control center of the brain. The conscious part of your brain (neocortex and pre-frontal cortex), the intended command and control center of the brain, completely shuts down. Your visual cortex shuts down, so things your eyes are seeing are not processed by the occipital lobe. Your hearing shuts down and all you hear is noise. You entire awareness to the outside world goes into shut down mode. You become oblivious to everything around you. During life or death events, your thinking and focus is intentionally narrowed, so that you can focus on one thing – survival. When you are in such a negative state, literally half of your brain shuts down.
When you experience stress, a negative emotion, or other negative emotions like anger, disgust, sadness or depression, it’s as if you are putting yourself into shock. You shift into zombie mode, albeit on a lesser level. The conscious part of your brain becomes less in control and your focus and awareness are narrowed. As a result of this narrowed focus and awareness, you become oblivious to solutions and opportunities. Those who remain perpetually negative struggle financially, struggle keeping a job, struggle with relationships and have almost no chance of succeeding in life because they are unable to see solutions and opportunities that would help them solve their problems and create a happy life.
This is why it is critical to make positive thinking a daily habit. We are all faced with everyday situations that cause stress, anger, disappointment and sadness. The key to breaking out of this negative mental outlook is practicing positivity every day until it becomes a habit. The starting point is gratitude. Gratitude is the gateway to a positive mental outlook. Gratitude opens the door to positivity. It shifts your thinking from negative to positive. This has a cascading effect, opening up your mind and allowing you to see abundance in your life, rather than scarcity. Gratitude gets you started on the path to a positive mental outlook. When coupled with other positivity habits, such as meditation, daily positive affirmations, scripting your ideal life, visualizing that ideal life or pursuing your dreams and goals, negativity fades away, replaced by hope, enthusiasm, optimism, joy and contentment. There’s an abundance of science on this. It’s not new age thinking or theory. Dr. Barbara Frederickson, University of North Carolina, recently published the results of a study she conducted on this very topic. When you are able to adopt habits that shift your thinking from negative to positive, you expand your thinking. An abundance mindset takes hold and you are able to see solutions and opportunities that are all around you. You turn on your entire brain, which then goes to work helping you manufacture the life of your dreams by pushing and pulling you, though intuition and gut feelings, in certain directions that lead to a happy, successful and fulfilled life.