The 6 Most Effective Thought Stopping Technique

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Thought stopping technique is about suppressing thoughts, especially the negative ones inside one’s mind. Anxiety, stress, and panic occur because of unwanted thoughts or negative and disturbing thoughts inside the mind, which get difficult to eradicate. We unknowingly think about extremely negative things and result in depression or anxiety.

According to studies, people constantly thinking negatively have higher chances of contracting dementia or Alzheimer’s and other mental disorder.

It is difficult to get out of your head and feel stuck in the turmoil of negative thoughts that can turn one’s world upside down. Due to this reason, nearly 70% of people across the world suffer from certain mental illnesses and, most commonly, depression and anxiety. Therapists and psychologists worldwide suggest thought-stopping techniques to stay positive, overcome anxiety and let go of the negativity inside their heads.

According to research and studies, the more a person understands their brain’s operation, the more they get to know themselves and easily manage stressful situations. For a person’s healthy and good mental health, one should stop thinking and taking things negatively in their life.

Negative thoughts and feelings have a bad impact on a person’s social image and performance. Inevitably, we all have certain bad days in our life where we feel everything is falling apart, everywhere is negativity, and there is fuming anger or frustration inside. It is alright to have an off day or a bad day once in a while but experiencing those negative thoughts is extremely unhealthy.

Signs Of Negative Person

There are certain signs and symptoms of negativity inside a person’s mind that cause their mind to turn everything into anxious stuff or, mostly, negative.

Here are a few of them:

  • They are too much inside their head that never sees things from others’ perspectives.
  • People with constant negative or unwanted thoughts think that they are beyond their age to explore any new thing/experience.
  • They let their past experiences decide their future. These people linger on their past experiences and never try to come out of them to change their future.
  • They never put effort into doing new things, and they prefer not to try a task instead of badly failing at it.
  • Negative people constantly complain about things that they don’t like or enjoy.
  • Procrastination is the ultimate sign of a negative person who may sometimes decide to replace their negative thoughts but delays practicing the thought-stopping technique.

What Is Thought Stopping Technique?

Thought Stopping Technique is usually practiced by therapists across the globe on their patients to help overcome anxiety caused by certain unwanted and negative thoughts inside their heads.

With the help of this thought-stopping technique, a person is distracted from negative or stressful thoughts into thinking about positive, realistic, and good things. It is always observed that people tend to develop an automatic habit of dwelling in negativity, resulting in great turmoil.

The thought-stopping technique has certain advantages. One of the most important benefits of practicing the thought-stopping technique is that people get complete control over their minds and recurring thought processes.

Thought Stopping Technique effectively stops unnecessary thoughts that might ruin someone’s day or mood and make negative vibes enter their lives. People suffering from panic or anxiety disorder could easily adapt to thinking negatively as a habit if not checked regularly.

Different Thought Stopping Techniques

The major goal of this technique is to prevent and treat one’s mind from obsessive thoughts, and one of the most effective thought-stopping techniques is a piece of medical advice given by doctors and therapists across the world is by using a rubber band. In this technique, a person is asked to wear a rubber band on their wrist, and whenever a negative thought comes in, they have to snap the rubber band.


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There are several different types of thought-stopping techniques that doctors and therapists suggest to their patients suffering from anxiety or depression. One of them is saying STOP whenever a person starts thinking negatively, or an unwanted thought enters their mind, and then start practicing saying it aloud.

Here is the list of 6 important and different thought-stopping technique which is extremely effective in curbing negative thoughts and developing positive thoughts.

They are as follows:

1. Journaling

It is one of the most effective thought-stopping techniques that help prevent negative thoughts in one’s mind. Journaling is a great way to write down every thought inside your mind on paper to let go of unwanted thoughts dwelling inside one’s brain. There is various type of journaling that one can do such as gratitude journal, dream journal, travel journals, and others. Keeping a journal in today’s modern world is an incredible way to touch with the traditional method of writing.

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The major objective of writing a journal is to organize our thoughts in one place and make sense of them. Therapists often suggest their clients suffering from anxiety to keep a journal and note down any unwanted or recurring thoughts inside their brains to let go of it and not dwell on them.

2. Meditation

The best way to cure depression, anxiety, or any mental health disorder is meditation. 3 out of 5 people across the world have greatly benefitted from meditation to curb anxiety and depression. It is scientifically proven that meditation is the best thought-stopping technique, and it works like wonder to have a positive life and let go of negativity.

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Meditating daily is a great way to prohibit negative feelings or thoughts in one’s mind. This changes the cognitive structure of the brain and develops strong abilities to fends off anxiety at best. Meditation reduces anxiety, and there is less chance of having any negative or unwanted thoughts. According to studies, meditating for 8 weeks constantly can help develop positive mindfulness, cure physical pain, and reduce anxiety to a great extent.

3. Auditory Distraction

To stop thinking unnecessarily or stop obsessive recurring thoughts inside one’s mind, auditory distraction is of great help. Listening to music, podcast, or audiobooks, watching your favorite movie/show, and calling someone to have a conversation are some of the negative thought-stopping techniques.

The little voice inside our head sometimes gets loud, and it gets difficult to get rid of the noise, and that is when auditory distraction comes into the picture. Whenever you think the voice inside your head is getting louder, put your headphones on and let the music do its magic and groove to the beats, indulge in an audiobook’s story, or watch a show/movie that you’ve wished to see for a long time. This is really helpful to distract your brain from causing distress with negative and unwanted thoughts.

4. Stop Sign

This is a verbal interruption which is another thought-stopping technique. In this technique, whenever a person starts thinking negatively, they need to say STOP either in their head or out loud if they are okay with it. This is a traditional and extremely effective method to stop unwanted thoughts and help in maintaining peace of mind.

This technique could be done several times a day, once in a calm and normal voice inside their head, and if that doesn’t work, then one can try saying it out loud as a command to their brain. Saying STOP or NOT NOW is really helpful to pause the recurring and loud voice inside one’s head.

5. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

People suffering from an anxiety disorder or constant negative and unwanted thoughts could be treated with certain techniques and treatments that are extremely effective in the long term. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is another thought-stopping technique that is extremely helpful in treating anxiety disorder and recurring negative thoughts.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) helps change one’s perspective on how they think and see the world and themselves. It helps analyze how our brain thinks in a certain situation; it is vastly about thinking and not how one feels in certain situations. The main objective of CBT is to identify the negative thoughts and perspectives in one’s mind and change them into positive and delightful thoughts and emotions.

The famous saying goes, “If one can change the way they think, they can change the way they feel,” which is what CBT is all about. It helps correct the thinking pattern of one’s mind, which is filled with anxious, negative, and unwanted thoughts that hold them back from doing things in life.

6. Self Talk

Only we can totally control our minds, and if we start talking to ourselves positively about things, we might reduce our turmoil and anxiety levels to a great extent. If a person is nervous or scared to do something for the first time and are having negative thoughts that they might leave a bad impression or they are going to ruin the performance, then at this time they should self talk positively and should motivate themselves by saying,’ I can do this!’

One should motivate and encourage themselves when anxious thoughts start prevailing inside their head until it is gone. After achieving success in preventing anxiety and negative thoughts from taking over your mind, you should reward yourself. Little victories and happiness with oneself are one such great sign of being happy and stress-free.

Our mind is a beautiful and sometimes difficult place to be in. Trespassers like negative, recurring, and unwanted thoughts certainly make our lives difficult, but it is not hard to get rid of them. One should be consistent in practicing the thought-stopping technique to let go of all negativity and should avoid dwelling on anxious thoughts and start focusing on attracting positive vibes and encouragement in their lives.

Infographic That Shows Top 7 Techniques To Stop Specific Phobias
Icy Health


While at times contributed by guest authors, our content is medically reviewed periodically by professionals for accuracy and relevance. We pride ourselves on our high-quality content and strive towards offering expertise while being authoritative. Our reviewers include doctors, nurses, mental health professionals, and even medical students. 

Do note that any information found on the site does not constitute legal or medical advice. Should you face health issues, please visit your doctor to get yourself diagnosed. Icy Health offers expert opinions and advice for informational purposes only. This is not a substitute for professional medical advice.


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