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Erica Galindo
Celebrating Food, Faith and Family
Last edited on: September 14, 2015.

New research in neuroscience is showing that we’re all hard wired to register and remember negative events more quickly and deeply than positive ones.


Our brain has Velcro for the negative and Teflon for the positive.


That means that our thoughts are attracted to danger, fear or anything that might suggest we are under attack. The brain does this to keep us safe. But focusing on the negative may not actually keep us safe tomorrow — and it surely messes up today.


You hear a bang or strange noise and you startle and become alert. You hear a bird song and you may think, “Lovely,” and then the song and the thought are gone.


Positive experiences and thoughts slide out of the brain like Teflon.


Many lines of research show that when we use our intention and attention in sustained and focused ways, we can do much to overcome the brain’s negative bias.


In order to encourage those positive experiences to stick, we must focus on them.


10 Ways to Upscale your Thinking. Think of something lovely that has happened recently. An experience or conversation. Spend 30-40 seconds remembering and enjoying that experience in detail. It takes that long to convince your brain to pay attention and store that positive memory with as much attention as it stores the negative.


Don’t allow your brain to lure you into a funk about life’s downers.


A genuinely happy life doesn’t happen without deliberate effort.


I recommend keeping your brain trained on the upside of life.


Here are my Top Ten Uppers* for living a more positive life:


  1. Lift up – your family members and friends publically whenever you can.
  2. Cut up – Joke and laugh with your friends. Smiles and laughter are contagious.
  3. Mess up – on something you usually do well. It will make you more real and approachable. Take off the mask of perfection. You’re prettier without it.
  4. Ease up – with the constant helpful suggestions. Let others do it their way.
  5. Lighten up – on your expectations. We’re all imperfect. Join the club.
  6. Hush up – Stop hijacking the conversation with YOUR story. Listen without interrupting.
  7. Heat up – the bedroom. ‘Nuff said.
  8. Grow up – It’s really not all about you. Focus on someone else.
  9. Fess up – when you’ve done something wrong.
  10. Stand up – for what you believe in.
  11. Look up – God knows and He cares. Trust Him.


*OK. So I have eleven, not ten. Which one would YOU leave out?


Tell us in the comment section.


The moral of the story is that if we want happier lives, we can’t just let our mind do whatever it’s used to doing. We need to practice some kind of regular mental and emotional discipline to counter the brain’s negative bias.


OVER TO YOU: How do you switch your brain from the Train Wreck channel to the Peace and Beauty Channel? How does that work for you? Tell us in the Comments Section below.


CALL ME at (707) 473-8278 for a complimentary 45-minute conversation to see how we might get your brain moving on an upward trajectory.


P.S. PASS IT ON: Love this post? Then use the tweet it, like it on Facebook and send it to specific friends via email.


Until next time, this is Carolyn, your “What’s Next?” Coach!

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