Stop Negative Thinking Spiral

Stop Negative Thinking Spiral

Posted by Jan Lawrence

A short film about thoughts and an example of the way in which negative thoughts can spiral.

Negative thoughts tend to be more likely

  • when we are going through stressful periods
  • at times when we are more preoccupied with things
  • when we are not looking after ourselves as well as usual

But why do our negative thoughts seem to spiral?
How do they manage to get worse on their own?

Circle of thoughts, feelings, physical reactions, behaviours

“I can’t cope”
“I don’t want to do this”
“I am no good at this”

Leading to “I feel worried, anxious, nervous”

Leading to Symptoms developing e.g. stomach cramps, dizzy, sweating, tense

Leading to “Erm I didn’t enjoy that, I don’t think I’ll bother next time”

The spiral can lead to…

“I am NOT doing that again!!”


With practice you can break the spiral by breaking the connections between thoughts, feelings, physical sensations and behaviour.

Breaking the spiral is achieved through

  • challenging negative thoughts
  • finding ways to relax the body
  • gradually changing behaviour

More on types of negative thoughts and ways to challenge them coming soon.