“Words only weigh as much as the air used to breathe them unless you give them the ultimate power.”–my mind has been musing over this quote from B.A. Hunter for nearly a week now. I’m often amused by what comes out of my mouth when I am in a conversation, but more often it’s the words that are unspoken, bobbing around as my thoughts, that are the most elusive. Obviously as I try to “quiet” my mind, it leads to a deeper exploration of my mind’s “search engine”, as I observe the needs, beliefs, and emotions that seem to color my perspective of reality. What am I focusing on? Because what I focus on gives it meaning, and that meaning produces emotion; this emotion produces my action. What’s my model of the world?–how do I feel about the state of my world.
Which has got me thinking about my auto-pilot: how can I create a positive mindset that is programmed and automatic? After watching Habit’s 101 , I made it a daily dedication to study how I can create proactive habits in my life. Now that I recognize that my mindset mostly dwells on the past, and my past=my future, I can set the intention to get new habits of mind that promote the changes I wish to see in my life.
So then focus becomes my ultimate power and my point of change. Noticing that I have a pessimistic view point seems to be the most obvious place to start. You can’t change what you aren’t aware of, right? Then once I am aware of it, I have the opportunity to pivot when I encounter a negative/ non-self serving thought. It takes deliberate practice, but with effort, comes the change. This is where the rubber meets the road!
In order to transform my perspective, I have to DECIDE that I can do this– reframing ‘impossible’ to I’m Possible–cheesy but true. Currently my confidence comes from finding some ideas that inspire nudging me in the right direction. Here are some strategies that I have found and am willing to try out:
- Generating positive emotion by exploring possibilities with “What if”.
- Example: What if I made that goal? What if I had more time?
- Dr. Daniel Amen has a a strategy for countering what he calls “ANTs” (a negative thought).
- Tony Robbins suggests that we can DOUBT IT OUT! He says “we doubt we can succeed when we should doubt that we could fail.”
- Pondering 5 Reasons why the “worst” may not be true.
- Finding “exceptions” to the rule.
- Influenced by Daniel Kahneman’s research on our thinking processes, David Casti suggests redirecting those mental movies to transform guilt and regret with using the sentence stem: “Next time, I intend…..”
- Change the focus from having resources to being resourceful. This cultivates appreciation and considers how contributions are being made for improvement.
- And I love this idea from Brian Johnson about playing Angel’s advocate and finding “what can go right” in a situation.
You know what I find so ironic and cool, that the minute I start researching how to modify my mindset, I find a warehouse of resources and tools that are out there. Most of them are super simple and take minimal time. I also find exercises like the ones I’ve listed not only mind-opening but also alter my emotion and lift my spirit. Win-Win!- I dig it!
So, I’ve decided to amplify this approach by using my new favorite app: Way of Life. I understand that what I measure, I can improve; so if I keep track of it, then I suppose “shift happens”.
Until next time….Keep Breathing!