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  • Writer's pictureLaura

8 Thought Patterns That Cloud Your Judgement

Our thoughts impact our actions, and ultimately, our overall state of happiness. Our thought patterns influence our emotions and perspective of the world.

If you can identify your unhelpful thought patterns, you can correct them and develop new ways of managing yourself and the world.

Your thought patterns influence multiple aspects of your life and these include:

1. Making Assumptions

Good decisions require information. Too many of us jump to false conclusions because we don't have all the facts. Before you reach a negative conclusion about a situation or person, delay your judgment, gather all the available information and make an informed decision as opposed to an emotional one.

How many times have you made a decision too quickly and regretted it?

Give yourself the chance to be right.

2. Applying the Past to the Future

Other children might have ignored or teased you in school back then, but that has nothing to do with your ability to make friends today.

The past does not have to equal the future

We're too quick to believe we're experts regarding our own abilities, one failure isn't enough to prove anything.

Pharmaceutical companies aren't allowed to test a drug on just one person and then release it to the public. Many attempts are required to prove that results aren't due to random chance.

Would you believe that a flipped coin would only land on "heads" in the future after flipping it once or twice and getting that result?

Even if you lack natural skill in one area, you can always learn. You weren't born knowing how to walk or do algebra. You can learn to be a great public speaker, salesperson, or social butterfly, too.

3. Over-emphasis on the Positive or Negative

This is a naturally occurring trait and it is important to raise self-awareness and to strive to be accurate. For example, remember a time when you start dating an ex-partner. At first, you may have been too focused on their positive traits, however as the relationship began to fail, you then may have become too focused on the negative.

In fact, neither is accurate

4. Imbalanced Relevance

Do you give your failures too much attention? Do you give your successes too little? Have a balanced view.

Just because your boss ignored your morning greeting, doesn't mean you're about to be fired.

Give yourself the credit you deserve

5. Taking Things Personally

It can be very easy to take things personally, however people do and say things for many reasons that don't include you. They might be having a bad day or dealing with a personal issue. Your car breaking down doesn't mean the universe is out to get you.

Others have more on their mind than just you

6. Focusing on the Past

The past can provide lessons and it's important to use past experiences constructively. Some people focus on the missed opportunities and mistakes, and when used this way, the past creates feelings of regret.

Let go of the past and avoid allowing it to cloud your future

7. Focusing on the Future

Having goals and plans is great, however sometimes a person can use the future as a source of worry. Stay focused on today.

Today is the only time you can change your life

Allow the future to arrive - it will come soon enough.

8. Putting things off

Is it easier to book a dentist appointment in when you notice a slight ache, or to wait until you can no longer speak, eat or drink?

If you wait until you're forced to deal with things, your solutions will be less elegant and less convenient.

Do things on your time

Do you indulge in any of these negative thought patterns?

The great thing is, noticing your tendencies is the first step to changing them. When you catch yourself thinking in a way that clouds your judgement, replace your thought pattern with one that serves you well.

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