As of April 1 2023, all current Medicaid healthcare plan members will need to reverify eligibility for their insurance coverage. We encourage all of our clients to learn more here to ensure their health insurance is not interrupted.

We’re Hiring! View Our Open Positions 

Are you a current client? Contact Your Clinic

What Is Negative Thinking?

In the realm of mental health, negative thinking is more than a fleeting moment of pessimism—it’s a pattern that can profoundly affect how we feel and behave. Learning to recognize and address negative thought patterns is a crucial step toward improved mental well-being. Let’s shed light on what negative thinking really is, how it manifests, and most importantly, how to overcome it. To learn more about depression treatment services, call us today at 304.410.0082.

The Nature of Negative Thinking

Negative thinking, often characterized by a focus on the worst-case scenarios or a persistent belief in one’s shortcomings, is a common human experience. It’s the mental filter through which we view the world and can color our perceptions in a shadow of hopelessness. Reframing these thoughts is not about turning into an eternal optimist but rather about finding a more balanced perspective.

There are many types of negative thoughts, including:


Catastrophizing is the art of expecting the worst to happen. It’s when a minor setback morphs into a major calamity in your head, leading to anxiety and stress.

All-or-Nothing Thinking

Also known as ‘black-and-white’ thinking, this is when you see things in extremes—something is either perfect or a complete failure. There’s no in-between, which can lead to unrealistic expectations and disappointment.


One bad event is seen as a never-ending pattern of defeat. It’s when you take one negative experience and apply it to everything.


This is the tendency to blame oneself for everything bad that happens, even if you had little to do with it. It can lead to a continuous cycle of guilt and self-criticism.

Effects of Negative Thinking on Mental Health

Mental health conditions are often entwined with negative thinking. Recognizing these patterns in yourself or a loved one is the first step toward seeking the necessary support.

Impact on Mood and Behavior

Negative thinking can lead to a cycle of depression, self-isolation, and even self-harm. The chronic stress it causes can contribute to heart disease, high blood pressure, and a weakened immune system.

Relationship with Anxiety and Depression

Persistent negative thinking can be a precursor to anxiety disorders and depression. It’s often a vicious cycle—depression can lead to more negative thoughts, which can intensify feelings of depression.

Recognizing Negative Thinking

Recognizing negative thinking is to take a step back and observe your thoughts objectively. Don’t accept all thoughts as facts; question their validity. Are they extreme? Are they based on just one event or generalizing a broader pattern based on a single incident?

Strategies to Overcome Negative Thinking

Talk Therapy

Talk therapy encompasses a range of approaches where individuals can discuss their thoughts and feelings in a supportive environment. Each form, from cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) to interpersonal therapy, addresses different aspects of mental well-being, aiming to provide insights and coping mechanisms.

At Harmony, we believe in the power of compassionate dialogue to foster healing and growth. Moreover, we respect each person’s unique path toward improved mental health.

Positive Affirmations and Gratitude Practices

Practicing positive affirmations can gradually shift your focus from the negative. By routinely acknowledging the good in your life, you can begin to shift your thinking toward a more optimistic view.

Mindfulness and Meditation Exercises

Mindfulness and meditation can help you become less attached to your thoughts. It teaches you to observe your mental processes without getting caught up in them, allowing you to respond to challenges more rationally.

Get Help Today From Harmony, a Member of Transformations Care Network

There’s no shame in seeking professional help. Harmony’s approach to mental health is rooted in compassion and understanding. Our team of experienced mental health care providers can guide you through the process of identifying and addressing negative thinking.

Acknowledging that you need help is a brave step. Harmony provides personalized care that respects your individual journey and challenges. Our mental health clinics offer a range of services, from individual counseling to group therapy, ensuring that every patient receives the support that’s best suited for them.

If you’re ready to take the next step in your mental health journey, click here to reach out to our team of empathetic mental health care experts. For existing clients, please click here and find your office location to contact your office directly.