Recently life had been getting me down a little bit from the emotional realisation that in a few short weeks I shall be out of formal education and in the big wide world to the stress of the final exams I will hopefully ever have to take it has been a tumultuous few weeks. However today on a little wander I had to go and treat myself to a cheeky coffee I decided something. There’s only so much that we can change. I am a great believer in fate and I happen to believe that everything happens for a reason but something today changed ever so slightly for me. After struggling with my mood and various other issues over the past few months I’ve decided to make a concerted effort to be more positive. CBT or cognitive behaviour therapy is all about changing the way you think about certain situations which could and several books that use the teachings of the founders of this philosophy have been helping me recently. My personal motto now thanks to a book I read to try and help me to sleep better is that “Thoughts aren’t facts.” This really struck me as such an obvious but helpful phrase to remember in times of stress and anxiety. Before a recent exam that I was particularly worried about I kept repeated it over and over to myself to quash the feeling that I was going to fail. Surprisingly it worked! I walked out of the exam feeling like I had given it my best shot.
Positive thinking may sound like a naff idea to many; in fact all of this self-help stuff has always riled my more cynical side but using these kinds of ideas in your everyday life can help you for the better. As a modern languages student I think that you need quite a lot of positive thinking particularly when you live abroad because every day you can find yourself in situations where your confidence is knocked from the man on the till in the supermarket replying to you in English as soon as you open your mouth to the daily culture shock one encounters when you realise folks on the continent can’t queue. I’ve decided not to let these little knocks to my confidence stop me from feeling happy about myself and to make the most of the short time I have left being a student.