Since mankind first invented the concept of battle, there have been battle cries—great bellows and howls meant to embolden the hearts of fellow combatants and strike fear into the hearts of enemies. Thankfully, we have evolved beyond our warlike tribal days (more or less). Now our battles are mostly fought in our minds—against doubt, against depression, against all the things that trouble us every day. Now our battle cries to stop negative thoughts are more mantra than something we scream in the elevator on the way to the office or as we step into a conference room.
So what should we be yelling to ourselves to stop negative thoughts as we trudge off into battle? Glad you asked. Here’s a list!
“I am” Battle Cries
- I am valuable and worth loving. It’s as simple as that. You’re YOU, and you’re precious. Period.
- I am still breathing and still alive. Hey, as long as you’ve got breath in your lungs and your arms are moving, there’s hope for you. Just remember that.
- I am one-of-a-kind, so I don’t need to compare myself to others. You may have heard people say “you look like this person” or “you sound like that person.” But contrary to what they mean, there is only one you. Also, remember that each person on this planet is treading on a unique path and has a vastly different set of experiences, so it doesn’t really make sense to compare yourself to the person next to you.
- I am stronger and braver than I think I am. The number one person who often limits us is our own self. Let’s stop that. Don’t put yourself down. Repeat this encouragement to yourself. You’ll feel better and empowered to do what’s right, good and commendable.
- I am going to move forward despite of… Today may not be a good one, and yesterday could have been worse. But as long as you have this “here” moment, you can begin again.
“I Will” Battle Cries
- I will do my best today and not be afraid of tomorrow. Are you facing daunting challenges? Just take a deep breath and put one foot in front of the other. Face one problem at a time. You are fearless and are capable of being excellent today regardless of what tomorrow may bring.
- I will choose to be happy and not let others’ negativity ruin my day. You can be a shoulder to cry or a friendly ear to your friends. But at the end of the day, it’s your decision to be affected by what others say—good or bad.
- I will give the benefit of the doubt and refuse to judge people. Sometimes things are not what they seem. And people are more than their current situation. So choose to listen and understand instead of jumping to conclusions.
- I will be better today. As Mufasa said to Simba in “The Lion King”, “You are more than what you have become.” Make positive changes in your life today. Remember, each moment is a present (no pun intended!). Make the most of it.
- I will not let bad circumstances rob me of my joy today. Without a doubt, each day has its own ups and downs. The question is: Will you allow the ‘downs’ in your life bring you down? Your choice.
“Even Though” Battle Cries
- Even though people may misunderstand me, I know the truth about myself. People can talk smack about you left and right. But when all is said and done, what you believe and who you are when you’re alone will always eventually come out—for everyone to see. Your character will always show itself.
- Even though I may feel this way today, it’s not permanent. There is always a light at the end of the tunnel. You may not get there as fast as you want, but the fact is, you’ll get there. Negative feelings and experiences you may have today have an expiration date.
- Even though others hurt me, I choose to forgive and let go. This statement becomes more powerful when combined with action and awareness of the act of forgiving and letting go of the hurt.
- Even though life is often unkind, I can always choose to be kind. Be the rose among the thorns. Be the exception to the norm. Choose to be kind when others are not.
- Even though I can’t control a lot of things in life, I can control my responses. You may not prevent events that anger you, but you can definitely choose to fume in anger or not. You may not avoid all ‘stress-inducing’ people, but you can certainly opt to let yourself be bothered by them or not.
Self-Compassionate Battle Cries
- I can never please everyone. Good thing, I don’t have to! No matter what we do, there will always be a person or two who won’t like us just because. Don’t feel bad about that. You don’t need to bother pleasing people in the first place.
- I can’t control what other people think of me—but what they think doesn’t really matter. That’s it. By repeating this statement to yourself and genuinely believing it, you’ll feel lighter and freer.
- It’s okay to NOT be okay. I’m not saying you should wallow in self-pity or pain. It’s important to validate or honestly acknowledge to yourself that you’re not okay. Then move from there.
- I have friends who accept me for who I am, and I have a family who loves me. Do I need to say more?
- My past doesn’t define me. So as long as you’ve got a today and a tomorrow, remember that you can begin again. People can change. YOU can change. So why not start now?
The Bottom Line on How to Stop Negative Thoughts
Life is too short to remain trapped in a web of pesky negative thoughts. So gear up with these battle cries. It’s time to stand up, dust yourself off, and live a bold life.