Have you heard that what you focus on you’ll get more of?
I believe it to be true. About ten years ago I began really changing the way that I was thinking. I listened to audios from inspirational teachers, I read books and got myself into courses that would help me mount this climb. Prior to this, although I was really trying to be positive, I would say my mindset was programmed to be negative. Underlying my positive speaking was a deep belief that I was broken.
The process of changing my thinking is ongoing, as would be for anyone. When we stop surrounding ourselves with positive influence what comes in is the standard resignation of life. We must strive, at least a little, in order to maintain that intellectual and emotional growth. Personally, I choose to keep handy the influence of teachers, speakers and authors on a very regular basis.
Changing beliefs takes a bit of diligence; disrupting a brain pattern takes some awareness, a commitment to new thinking and repetition. It isn’t hard or complicated; but we like to think anything that takes diligence is hard.
Changing how you think isn’t difficult, it just takes a little effort every day. By investing some time into a few basic practices you can re-program your mind and your life to bring more good to you. No matter what you’ve been through or how stubborn you are, with a little diligence you can change your thinking, your emotions and your life.
How do you change your thinking?
First, become aware of your internal conversation. Listen to what you actually say to yourself. You may be surprised to find out what your mind is busy doing when you aren’t consciously guiding it or ignoring it altogether. It’s wandering down a dark alley, through a bad neighborhood and digging up the past. It’s judging people, calling names and throwing insults. It’s in misery, anger and frustration. It wants to gossip and badmouth. It’s confused. And worst of all, it’s doing this to you and about you more than anyone.
Yes, your internal dialogue is more judgemental, demanding and angry at you than anyone else. It abuses you and reminds you of all of your failures. It takes you down the rabbit hole of all that is wrong in your life. It’s a reminder of the bad things of the past.
I don’t know why our internal chatter is negative. I’ve not yet discovered the “why”. But I do know that with all the work I’ve done for myself and from all the people I’ve worked with. No one has internal cheerleaders. The people who, at first, say they have a happy internal conversation find that, when they look deeper, there’s a nasty belief system they’ve been covering up with nice words and positive sayings, just as I was. The ‘negative Nancy’ is always there, insidiously captaining the ship.
It may take a variety of forms. It might just constantly be assessing and evaluating. Perhaps it’s stuck on repeat and replays events over and over. Or maybe it’s just looking for what’s wrong. But, no matter what form your internal blabbermouth takes, it’s not helping.
The Good News
It’s not real. The internal chatterbox is just noise. Just NOISE. No different than hearing the car next to you blaring music that you don’t like. No different than overhearing a nearby conversation. It’s just information running all day. You don’t have to listen to it.
In fact, you can notice it running, running and running all day, and then you can take actions that prove it wrong. Go ahead and prove it wrong. When it’s harping on and on about how you can never lose weight go for that walk, go to the gym, eat that protein shake and prove to that blabbermouth that healthier choices lead to more energy. When it’s saying you’re right that your spouse is a jerk go ahead and say you’re truly sorry about that argument. Prove the internal judge wrong about your relationship. Prove that being loving and vulnerable can create a loving partnership.
The noisy peanut gallery in your head isn’t you. It’s a collection of ideas from your past, your childhood, your experiences designed to protect you from getting hurt. Even though it’s there, it’s not real. It’s just a string of ideas that are no longer useful to someone who’s ready to be the leader in their own life. Become aware of the voice, but don’t listen to what it says. There’s power in ‘hearing’ it, there’s more power in ignore it’s so-called guidance.