Does Meditation Get Rid of Negative Thoughts?

Does Meditation Get Rid of Negative Thoughts?

If you’ve started meditation with the goal of getting rid of negative thoughts, you are in for a rough time. 

Everyone has negative thoughts, some to a higher degree than others, but meditation allows you to become indifferent to those thoughts.

This can be a multi-year process, but once you manage to remain indifferent to what you label negative thoughts, you’ll be far ahead and operating at an advantage, compared to those who let their thoughts get the best of them. 

As basic as it sounds, thoughts are just thoughts. Negative ones are necessary to a degree, so we can have a balance between good and bad thoughts, which can be compared to having a life with ups and downs, which, many times, as much as we like to think we hate the challenge, it’s what ultimately helps us grow. 

You Can Learn a Lot From Negative Thoughts

The more you learn about yourself, the more you know what moves to take. It’s a bit like learning a programming language, but instead of a programming language, it’s the language of you. 

Negative thoughts are a test, and they will often manifest during a meditation as a way to have you stop. 

The mind isn’t used to meditation, but if you manage to push through by sitting with that thought for as long as it lasts, over time, that same thought gets weaker, as opposed to the thought weakening you and growing bigger than you.

Many times, negative thoughts are riddles with things about ourselves we haven’t come to terms with, which is often called shadow work. 

Negative thoughts are what allow you to learn more about the repressed part of yourself you’ve tried to keep away either consciously or subconsciously, but that, upon accepting, will be easier to let go of.

Simply embracing the thought is a major step of courage most aren’t willing to take, so each time you accept that a negative thought exists, without labeling it a negative or positive thought, you’re one step closer to mastering yourself. 

One of the core principles of meditation involves observation without dwelling on any particular thoughts, it’s what frees individuals from being agonized by their thoughts and being free. 

The concept of freedom is a bit broad because it’s hard to feel free if your thoughts are getting the best of your emotions. 

Detaching From Your Thoughts

While negative thoughts will always exist, you don’t have to identify with them. Which, in essence, would render these thoughts useless, despite their existence. 

They’re just there, floating like clouds without any effect on you. This is the first step towards mastering yourself and cultivating freedom. 

Those who have meditated for years have an easier time choosing what thoughts to identify with, but at the end of the day, you are not your thoughts. 

You don’t detach from negative thoughts by running away from them or trying to substitute them with a bunch of positive thoughts since if you resist these thoughts, they will just keep persisting. 

The alternative to not accepting these thoughts may only provide temporary relief, only for it to pile onto the unaddressed shadow that grows stronger and bigger by the day, the more we neglect to address it. 

Only for these thoughts to show up in the most inopportune moment when they couldn’t serve you less.  

It can almost be a bit like a pile of garbage stacking up and needless to say, the more it stacks up, the harder it is to remove. 

Who You Are vs. Who You Think You Are

Keep in mind that not all the thoughts you experience are yours. We learn from a mixture of our experiences and what we learn from others, and it all gets mixed up into this perceived identity we have about ourselves, and for that reason, many don’t know themselves. 

They’ve suppressed a substantial part that makes them who they are, all because they choose to attach to their thoughts or attribute a label to them. 

It’s the easy way out in the short term, but the hardest way out in the long term, since we end up becoming our own worst enemy. I personally feel that no one can inflict more psychological damage on me than I can. Similarly, no one can help you achieve more than yourself. 

Thoughts are a double-edged sword since they influence our behavior, that’s why, if you start by learning how to detach from your thoughts, you can map out a bunch of thoughts and choose which one serves you, while still remaining indifferent to negative ones that always will be there. 

There are people who live their full lives without addressing their shadows, but in the back of their minds, these thoughts still show up sooner or later, no matter how old you are

The sooner you start meditating, the sooner you pave the path towards a life where you have control over yourself and actually get to know who you really are. 

Internally, this puts you ahead of even those that are high achievers, and the path towards achieving those goals you’ve set out for yourself no longer gets cluttered by negative thoughts that would’ve been there along the way, such as doubt. 

Meditation strengthens your discipline, something which operates regardless of negative thoughts, self-doubt, or of the many undesirable roadblocks that hold people back. 

Can You Become Completely Indifferent To Negative Thoughts?

No one has the infallible key to happiness or everything in complete order. Even those who have meditated for years struggle with negative thoughts from time to time, but certainly not to the same degree as someone that neglects the value of self-mastery. 

Detaching from your thoughts is one of the quickest ways to move forward in anything else you do since thoughts influence a substantial amount of actions we make in our day-to-day life. 

By default, even if your focus isn’t to become indifferent to negative thoughts, it will happen as a by-product of not attaching labels to things, which, over time, becomes easier to apply to almost everything you do, assuming you are following the proper meditation that works for you. 

Final Thoughts

Meditation can take someone from overthinking every thought they get to becoming completely detached from these thoughts that are the source of agony, to begin with. 

Just focusing on your breathing is the easiest way to shift your attention from whatever thought you are having, to having your undivided attention with meditation. 

If you’re starting out, it’s very normal for either distracting or negative thoughts to show up, simply accept their existence and keep at it, and over time, you train that ability like a muscle. 

There are times when negative thoughts are necessary since sometimes they can stem from a serious concern we should address and it’s the mind’s urgent way to ask for help, in those cases, it makes no sense to ignore such negative thoughts. So it does help to differentiate purely detracting negative thoughts from reasonable ones that call for a legitimate cause for concern. 

It’s also worth noting that most negative thoughts emanate from either the past or the future. It’s rare to find negative thoughts in the present since we are most at peace when we master living in the present moment.