Contrast thinking is a tool that can help you to be in charge of your life. It’s a technique wherein any limiting thoughts are subbed with positive ones.
This is a TGIF evening. You had to sacrifice your last weekend to manage an escalation from an important client. You handled it well and your boss sent you an email appreciating your efforts.
Today, you feel relaxed and have plans for the weekend with your spouse.
You get an unexpected call from a distant cousin who hasn’t met you for years informing of his visit to your place for the weekend. He sounds like very excited to meet you.
Suddenly you feel that your weekend plans are ruined and think: “I wish there are no such relations as cousins – Now, I would not be able to spend the weekend in my own way :(”
Instead, you can use contrast thinking here to replace that negative thought pattern: “In this busy world where nobody has time for others, my cousin wants to spend time with me. It’s going to be a great time. I’m so blessed to have cousins like him!”
Then think how fortunate you are to have such a caring cousin. Pause and think of all the positive memories. Soon, the negative thought pattern will be diminished and you will look forward to the exciting weekend ahead with someone with whom you had played, cried, laughed and enjoyed your childhood.
English novelist Charles Dickens wrote it in the most elegant way:
“There are dark shadows on the earth, but its lights are stronger in the contrast.”
Use contrast thinking when you feel you are taken over by shadows. Use it to reclaim your lights. Use it to make a better choice.
Note: The assumption in the above use case is that everyone has a right intent and it is out of context here what to do to avoid unnecessary visits of annoying people. This can be a topic of another blog post! 😉