Why Am I So Negative?

By Jim Squire MDiv RP |

  You’re not alone if you feel that your brain tends to focus on the negative more, in fact everyone struggles with this to some degree. Research has shown that our brain responds more frequently to stimuli it deems negative and that it has a greater sensitivity to anything negative.  There is a theory referred to as negative evolutionary bias which states those that have a brain that focuses more on the negative tended to survive longer and therefore had a greater opportunity to procreate and pass on their genes. I often explain it to clients that one of the brain’s job is to help you avoid pain, danger and of course anything life threatening. Which makes perfect sense if I don’t notice a rainbow it wont change my life much however not noticing something harmful could.

  This negative bias also has a huge influence on our relationships research has shown unless there over five times more positive interactions in the relationship we will view the relationship negatively. Now that we know the brain has the negative bias what can be do about it? Well there is an amazing thing called neuroplasticity which means the brain can be rewired with the right effort. Research has shown that focusing on more positive aspects of our lives including what we are grateful each day for will shift the brain to a more positive state in 45-60 days. The key is to be intentional each day with these exercises and in time our brain naturally becomes more balanced and we tend to see the positive aspects of life more easily.