Our brains are hardwired for negativity. It’s a survival mechanism—to keep us alive, our brains are constantly scanning for potential dangers. However, that negativity bias can impact your mental and physical health over time; and if you’re already struggling with a chronic illness, like autoimmune disease, spiraling down a negative rabbit hole can do way more harm than good.
Take it from Eileen Laird, an autoimmune warrior and author of Healing Mindset: A Guide to the Mind-Body Connection for People with Autoimmune Disease. “It’s really natural for fear, grief, and anger to surround that experience,” she says on this episode of the mindbodygreen podcast. “[But] the unfortunate side effect is that it can increase the inflammation even more.” All that to say: Mindfulness is an important tool for long-term healing—it’s not the only tool, of course, but we can’t ignore the power of the mind-body connection.
If you frequently face unhelpful thoughts, you may want to try Laird’s three techniques to overcome them.