Breathe in. Breathe out. Look around. People are leading happy lives. While their good fortune plays on your mind, your own life seems crippled with never-ending problems. You are getting in and out of bad relationships, hurt over and over again, emotionally drained, and physically tired.
At work, your situation is no different. You have been procrastinating tasks endlessly for weeks, resulting in poor productivity and low morale. With each passing day, stress seems to be reaching alarming levels. And to cope with this, you pick up bad habits. Clearly, you are no stranger to repetitive, negative patterns.
You are not alone. Many amongst us are stuck in negative patterns we can’t seem to get out of. We wonder ‘Why me?’, and wallow in the misery of being victims of the situation. What we probably fail to do is notice the repetitive nature of certain patterns. So what is the root cause of these repeated patterns? How do they impact us, and how can we break this negative loop to lead a happy and stress-free life?
According to research, there are at least 10 common negative thinking patterns, and these patterns take shape very early in life. In fact, prenatal impressions play a significant role in repetitive patterns. Counsellor Amita Mani explains, “Right from conception in the mother’s womb, some patterns of thought, emotion, and behaviour get impressed on our psyche. These lead to the manifestation of repeated patterns because that’s what we think or have programmed ourselves to believe. These are self-defeating mental blocks.” However, the negative patterns can also become a part of the script in the first seven years of an individual’s life, she points out.
When we are young, we don’t understand why these patterns repeat, let alone give a thought as to how they might already be imprinted in our minds. We probably even dismiss such patterns as coincidental. Truth is, if a life event has repeated more than twice, chances are it is not merely a coincidence. It is only when this realisation dawns on us that we begin to wonder why we are attracting similar negative patterns.
Sometimes there might be more to the negative cycles in life than psychology. The cause could be explained esoterically. It is said that some negative patterns may be carried across many lifetimes. Life skills coach and motivational speaker Neelam Kumar is a practising Nichiren Buddhist. She says, “I believe repeated cycles of issues in relationships and finances are an accumulation of the causes we have created over several lifetimes, of which we are seeing the effect now.”