12 sec brain trick to always think positively
A brain trick to always think positively sounds very easy to be true… A positive mental attitude is essential for physical and emotional health. Positivity helps us deal with (and recover from) difficulties more easily. Unfortunately, being optimistic today can be quite difficult.
But the good news is that it only takes 12 seconds to trick your brain into being more positive.
How will you achieve this brain trick? Just keep reading.
First, let’s talk about negative thoughts.
They are normal. In fact, people are attracted to negativity. According to experts, our brains react more strongly to negative emotions and better keep the lessons learned from unpleasant experiences (compared to good ones).
Painful things are more easily captured in our brains. This bias of negativity kept people alive during the hunter-gatherer days, which was great for them. But for the 21st century? We could all use a little less negative thinking in our lives.
Our brain is an incredible organ.
It certainly pushes us into negative thoughts many times, but Dr. Hanson, who founded the Wellspring Institute for Neuroscience and Contemplative Wisdom and has written six books, including Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm and Confidence, says that Our brains need just 12 seconds to make new connections between neurons.
Neurons carry messages from one part of the brain to another and from the brain to other areas of the nervous system. The 86 billion neurons tell you how to act in certain situations and interpret information. Neurons associate pleasant experiences with positive emotions.
For example, if you conquer Mount Everest, then you feel happy and proud. Neurons will associate experience (conquering Mount Everest) with positivity (happiness, pride). If you regularly climb to the top of the mountains, your brain will continue to associate “climbing” with “joy”.
So if you want to trick your brain into thinking more positively, all you have to do is create new neural connections between an experience and an emotion. But how do you do that?
The 12-second brain trick to always think positively
When you are stressed, cortisol levels rise. Cortisol activates the emergency or combat response. This was ideal in the old days when people were hunters, but not suitable for the 21st century. Excess cortisol increases the chances of falling victim to depression or anxiety.
So if you are feeling sad, anxious, or frustrated, try using the 12-second rule to return to a more positive place.
To do this, take at least 12 seconds to trick your brain and think of a positive memory, image, or relationship. Think of all the reasons your brain describes this memory, image, or relationship as something good. Keep doing it whenever you feel anxious or in a negative environment.
Over time, your brain will be trained to look at the bright side instead of focusing on the negativity of the moment.
This does not mean that you are ignoring the bad things that are happening and need to be addressed. It means reconnecting your brain to lean towards positivity rather than negativity. This trick can build resilience in difficult situations, improve overall mood and even help fight depression.