Overall, I'm a very positive person paying particular attention to re-focus my thoughts when they do stray knowing the value that keeping positive thoughts plays on one's overall mental outlook, physical condition and outward ability to attract other like-minded, positive people.
However, like everyone, I slip into episodes of negativity, where I notice (or more likely those around me notice) a higher degree of grumpiness.
As we age, I find this happens to a greater extent the older we get.
Perhaps it is that we dream less and "give-in" to the way things are more at an older age or just have that sense that things haven't gone our way thus far and time may be running out – not really sure – but it certainly is a trend I have noticed to a greater degree as people age.
Suppose that's why they call it "Grumpy Ol Man Syndrome"
The truth is becoming grumpier is a direct sign that things are not right inside your mind.
Behavior comes from thoughts, thoughts come from beliefs and so being grumpy tends to mean that we are letting limiting beliefs cloud more and more of our thinking leading to increased negative self-talk and thoughts which reduce our happiness and tolerance leading to "grumpy" behavior.
While those around you are certainly impacted, hurt most by this negative thinking is you, your body and your mind.
So What To Do About Being Grumpy All Of The Time?
As with any other habit, in order to change we need to:
- Disrupt the old habit
- Replace it with a new, more positive habit
Here are two highly effective ways that you can overcome your negative thinking and become less grumpy – and they begin to work instantly.
Easily the most powerful mechanism for disrupting existing bad habits, especially when they are deeply embedded in our beliefs and thought patterns is meditation. When I speak about meditation I refer to ANY technique that allows you to interrupt your thoughts, put them off to the side (not stop them as that is impossible) and just give your mind an opening where it can rest.
My favorite technique is to listen to repetitive ocean or nature sounds – the sounds are soothing to me and the repetition is key to habituating the mind such that it overrides all other thought and allows you a freedom of having "no thoughts" allowing you to erase beliefs and judgement that is getting in your way today.
Meditation allows you to more objectively see your life and its relation to the world without clouding it with beliefs or pre-conceived notions that force you to act or react in a certain way.
When I am in a state of meditation thoughts fly by underneath me seeming to not really belong to me so that I can take a "judgement-free", more objective view of those situations allowing for new perspectives as well as lower levels of stress and frustration.
Your techniques of meditation may involve guided meditation, complete silence, focus on your own breathing or any other method that allows you to quickly enter that place where you feel completely free to let go and allow yourself to fall into a state of focused non-concentration.
When it comes to having a technique that allows you to replace your negative thoughts with positive ones, taking time twice daily (recommended is when you first wake up and before you go to bed each night) to reflect vividly on the things you can be grateful for in your life.
It may be the people you are most fond of, your own character traits you are proud of, a specific accomplishment in school or at work, a simple set of gestures that helped or changed someone else's life or simply nature itself in all of its wonder and beauty.
Have a list of 4-5 things you are most grateful for in your life and review it, putting yourself into those situations so you can actually FEEL the warmth and positive energy associated with being grateful.
What practicing gratitude does for you is replaces those negative thoughts (most of which are completely fabricated) with highly emotional and powerful thoughts of being grateful.
Grumpiness may seem like a natural part of aging or as something that just "happens" to people at certain points of their lives – but grumpiness is a sign of negative thinking, unhappiness and often leads to no good.
Nip it in the bud by replacing the negative beliefs and thoughts that lead to your grumpy behavior with new-found calmness, peace, happiness and gratitude.