3 Questions to Avoid Asking Yourself This Year

With all of the horrors and sadness in the world today, it’s easy to get sucked into the negativity and hopelessness. Once that happens, the reflections we have and the questions we ask ourselves spiral away from being helpful and into damaging territory.

Here are some questions to avoid asking ourselves this year—they are not productive and can cause us even more hardship. Try reflecting on questions that will lead you to better answers.

1) “What is looming ahead?”

This question can leave us in a perpetual state of anxiety. Of course it’s a good thing to be prepared and to set goals for ourselves. However, constantly worrying about what bad thing will happen next in our lives is no way to live. Instead, limit your future anxious thoughts by mindfully bringing yourself back to the present and focusing on what good actions you can take now.

2) “Where did I go wrong?”

Not only can ruminating on what might happen be problematic, but living in the past can hurt us, too. Looking back on past events with a critical eye can lead to some really helpful insights regarding how to handle situations better the next time around. We just have to be careful to not fall into the trap of allowing the past to paralyze our future actions. Instead of asking “where did I go wrong?” try asking “what can I learn from what happened?” That simple shift in language changes the answer from something filled with doom to something filled with reflection and plans for the future.

3) “Why am I such a ___?”

When confronted with intense emotions about our traits or behaviors, sometimes we tend to assign labels to ourselves: I forgot about that meeting—again (Why am I such an idiot?). I didn’t thank that person for holding the door for me (Why am I such a rude jackass?). I haven’t been to the gym in 2 weeks (Why am I such a lazy good-for-nothing?).

None of these exaggerations are helpful, because they are just that: exaggerations. Many people tend to do this when reflecting on themselves, but do not react the same way when a loved one says the same about themselves. Isn’t that curious? A friend says “I’m such a moron” and our first instinct is usually to say “No you’re not!”.

It would be great if we could apply the same sensitivity to ourselves—and even prevent ourselves from making such snap judgments in the first place. Instead of asking this question of yourself, state the facts (“I forgot a meeting. That doesn’t make me an idiot.”), reflect on how to make improvements for the future, and move on.

Related Stories:

Photo credit: Thinkstock

49 comments

Marie W
Marie W3 months ago

thanks for sharing

SEND
heather g
heather g9 months ago

A little bit over-the-top

SEND
Sonia M
Sonia M9 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

SEND
Muff-Anne Y

Thanks.

SEND
Teresa A
Teresa Antela9 months ago

Easier to say than to practice...

SEND
Cathy B
Cathy B9 months ago

Thank you for sharing.

SEND
Ruth S
Ruth S9 months ago

Thanks.

SEND
Winn A
Winn Adams9 months ago

noted

SEND
Winn A
Winn Adams9 months ago

Thanks

SEND
Camilla V
Camilla Vaga9 months ago

noted

SEND