The way you speak about your negative thoughts is where speaking about them can actually give those thoughts power. Consider entering into this imaginary scenario with me.

See if you can imagine your negative thoughts as a person in the room with you. You can give them a personality, a name, a form of some kind—whatever it takes to make them seem like something other than you for a moment.

For illustration purposes, I’m going to refer to my set of negative thoughts as Bossie. Now imagine that Bossie is quietly sitting in my office with me reflecting on the way her negative thoughts have been limiting her life.

Pretty soon Bossie’s reflections become angry accusations against people we know. Then they become disparaging remarks about me. She’s livid, and everyone is to blame. Sitting in my office feels like sitting in a dark cloud.

When I question her about it, she tells me, she is just venting to get it out of her system, but what I’m noticing is that she isn’t letting go of anything. In fact, she is getting nastier.

Finally, I suggest that Bossie drop into her heart and speak from there if she wants me to listen to her. Begrudgingly, she sinks down into her heart. Now, she begins to cry as she pours out her heart. Occasionally she has a burst of anger, and I listen compassionately. Now she is speaking her pain and her frustration, but it is not directed with venom toward anyone.

She continues to speak, and I continue to listen to her with compassion. If she begins to blame herself or me, I encourage Bossie to go into her heart and speak from there. As she does the blame disappears. The confusion, frustration, sorrow, loss, lack of worth and other such feelings rise to the surface.

I invite Bossie to hold those feelings in her compassion. I encourage her to be truthful about and present to her feelings—from her heart. In time, deeper truths emerge, and she has greater understanding about herself.

Eventually, all that is left is heart-felt compassion for her and anyone involved in her life.

So, is it harmful to speak about negative thoughts? Not necessarily, particularly if you are being honest with yourself. Suppressing negative thoughts only internalizes them and they fester inside your mind, heart and body.

That said, feeding negative thoughts about you and others only builds greater resentment and regrets—the stuff behind many chronic illness. It is perfectly appropriate to feel angry or sorrowful. It becomes dangerous when you feed them as though you were putting logs on a fire.

If you feel yourself going from angry to enraged or from sorrowful to despondent, you may very well be feeding the negative feelings, which takes you further away from healing. I have discovered that when you are feeding negative feelings and thoughts, you are usually caught in a cycle of blame. Blaming keeps you stuck in the negativity and stops healing from occurring. In that sense, you are giving them more power.

The key is to recognize your feelings, be honest about them, and be in compassion with them, without blaming yourself or anyone else.

Now join me again, this time in your own scenario. See if you can give your negative thoughts a personality. What would that personality be saying? Can you encourage this negative part of you to speak and express, while you listen to in compassion? What happens as you allow those negative thoughts and feelings to be heard and recognized in the presence of your compassion?

There is a Buddhist compassion meditation that you might find equally helpful in learning how be with negative thoughts. You can read about it here:

If you have never tried expressing your negative thoughts and emotions while holding them in compassion, I highly recommend it. I’ve seen dramatic shifts take place in healing practices that honor your emotions appropriately.

Author's Bio: 

Misa Hopkins is the author of the best-selling book, “The Root of All Healing: 7 Steps to Healing Anything,” named the first-aid handbook for the new 21st Century consciousness. Hopkins is an astute observer of human motivation and potential. Her observations about the healing progress of her clients and her own miraculous healings led her to ground-breaking conclusions about why people remain ill. In her writing and workshops, she provides insights about breaking through barriers to wellness. You can ready more of her work a