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William S. Cottringer

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How Do You Get Rid of Negative Thoughts?
By William S. Cottringer
Last edited: Friday, November 23, 2007
Posted: Friday, November 23, 2007

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• 20 Writing Tips for Better Results
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This article tells you of the secret behind The Secret--How to get rid of negative thoughts and get positive outcomes.

How Do You Get Rid of Negative Thoughts?

By Bill Cottringer

“All negativity is an illusion created by the limited mind to protect and defend itself.” ~Ambika Wauters

By now the power of “The Secret” is commonplace knowledge. Since you attract what you ask for, the real secret is to learn how to stop asking for what you get and don’t really want—the negative things in life. Well now if I picked up a book that spelled out exactly how to do this, I would buy it for sure because I have been working on this idea for quite a few decades without much progress.

At this point in my own life I think I understand the problem well enough to start working on the solution. First of all, since the majority of our thinking is unconscious, that reality poses a huge obstacle. The first part of the solution becomes making the unconscious negative thoughts more conscious in order to understand their motivation so we can redirect them to attract what we think we want. Real easy right?

Wow, that is a heck of a challenge because some say all the wisdom and truth about life is embedded in our unconscious minds and life is merely a pilgrimage of translating that good stuff to our conscious awareness so we can know and use it better to make the world a better place for us all. Maybe like returning full circle to the utopia of the Garden of Eden. That is another whole story to pursue at a different time. Stay tuned though.

Back to point at hand. Actually, this translation process doesn’t have to be a long and drawn out one. Once you finally figure out what is going on with this deal, the real solution becomes very simple. In fact, it is simple enough to feel guilty about. The problem is not in having and getting rid of negative thoughts, but rather in interpreting them as negative before they even become conscious! That is some trick we all play on ourselves to keep “The Secret” from delivering its magic.

If this all seems too simple and easy, that is because it really is. Who ever said the mystery of life was too difficult to figure out? A really good saying comes to mind—“The obscure takes awhile to see, while the obvious even longer.” You just have to have patience to gradually achieve overnight success at this discovery. Like eastern mystics said long ago, “In anything timing is everything.”

The real problem was started in school—where we were taught to divide the whole wide world into this or that “dualistic polar opposites.” Remember learning to compare and contrast things into pros and cons? None of us ever questioned the reality of things either being innately positive or negative, good or bad, or right or wrong; that is just a convenient, artificial category we forced things into to remember them better. Yes or no is much easier to remember than “maybe yes sometimes and no other times, depending on this or that…”

The trouble is that we unknowingly created the terrible twins within who constantly war against each other for one side to win and the other to lose—head vs. heart, good self vs. bad self, and cause vs. effect. I have to use my positive thoughts to conquer my negative ones, so I can win in getting all the positive, desirable things and not lose by getting all the negative, undesirable ones. Like Dr. Phil says, “How is that working for you?” Or like Alan Watts tried to warn us decades ago, “it is like trying to pull yourself up by grabbing onto your own bootstraps and tugging at them.”

We can’t feel negative about this trick our schooling played on us, because there is a happy ending—the questioning of the correctness of this over-simplistic dualistic right-wrong, good-bad, positive-negative judgment itself. Such a bold question leads to a very happy answer. Everything you ask for is okay, it is just the imaginary interpretation that something isn’t okay that falsely makes it seem more not okay to the point of you actually believing it to be so to the further point of really being so. But for some unknown reason you still end up being confused about it.

Oddly the purpose of this dualistic thinking we were taught is to finally lead us all to the real simple truth of the “oneness” of everything in life—rejoining this or that into it. In the end everything you want and ask for is okay, once you look past what you are seeing and spot the liberating non-judgmental freedom that frees you from the mental either-or terrible twins within.

I think that is what is meant by the saying, “the truth will set you free.” Only then do you truly become free to make the right choices that help you move closer to the finish line, knowing the truth without any confusion. Is such transcendence above the terrible twins within an easy process? It depends upon your own questioning of the pre-judgment of the idea itself. That may require shedding some of the soft safe space between the secure thinking you and the insecure acting you. Or are they the same?

William Cottringer, Ph.D. is President of Puget Sound Security in Bellevue, WA, along with being a Sport Psychologist, Business Success Coach, Photographer and Writer. He is author of several business and self-development books, including, “You Can Have Your Cheese & Eat It Too” (Executive Excellence), “The Bow-Wow Secrets” (Wisdom Tree), and “Do What Matters Most” and “P” Point Management” (Atlantic Book Publishers). Also watch for “Reality Repair Rx” which is coming soon. Bill can be reached for comments or questions at (425) 454-5011 or


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