How Your Thoughts Shape Your Life
Your thoughts shape your life. Did you know that? If you read my last post you already know your mind is your most powerful tool.
Your thoughts have power
Have you ever thought about something so much when it happens you say “I knew it!” This is because you’ve subconsciously told your brain to take action. By taking action you made those thoughts your reality.
Tapping into our subconscious mind is incredibly powerful. We often do so without realizing it. Repeating the same thoughts, wants or needs manifests them into reality.
Analyze events that have occurred in your life. How did you think about them before they occurred? Did you play the scenario out? Did you repeat that scenario over and over?
What about when you were in school and had to take a test? Did you tell yourself you’d fail or that you’d ace it? Chances are, your results were whatever you thought (ahead of time) they would be.
Our thoughts have a direct impact on our actions, behavior, attitude and reactions. They not only affect us but also those around us.
The more often you think about something, the more likely it is to come true. This can be good or bad depending on the thought.
Negative thoughts can shape our life
Let’s take the bad angle first. Think about someone in your life that tends to be more negative. What does their life look like? Is everything hard for them? What are their surroundings like?
When you think with a negative filter, you will receive negative results. Things will never go your way. Life will feel like it’s happening to you and not for you.
We all have people in our lives we see make decisions that have obvious negative outcomes. Maybe you yourself are that person. How did you approach the situation?
Let’s use an example:
We’ll keep it simple for this example’s sake. Say you have a presentation due at work. It’s Monday and the presentation is due Friday. It’s for an idea that will improve a process in your department and will make you and your team’s lives easier. You are presenting to senior leadership.
You tell yourself you have an entire week to prepare the presentation so you put it off. A few days pass and it’s now Wednesday. Fear begins to creep up because you haven’t started the presentation yet.
You get mad for putting yourself in this situation and stress over the deadline. Your work is clouded by negative thoughts. You are stressed because you feel incapable of getting quality work done. You beat yourself up over it.
These feelings are amplified because of the time crunch you are now in, causing you to rush your work. You tell yourself there’s no way you can do this.
Friday morning arrives. You are not only exhausted from the overload of work, but also from negative energy. You have negative feelings about hitting that send button on the email. You end up turning a subpar presentation in.
You show up to the presentation and are a hot mess. You’re exhausted and your nerves are out of control.
You begin and stumble through your presentation. While your idea is amazing and can really make a difference, it flops. Leadership fails to accept it because of your poor delivery.
Your negative thoughts directly affected this
Your presentation was setup for failure from the beginning. When you told yourself you had time that was the first sign. You then convinced yourself it was ok to do a poor job on the presentation. You did this without even realizing it.
The first thoughts we have will dictate our action and how a result will turn out. In this example, negative thoughts shaped your reality in a big (and disappointing) way.
How positive thoughts can shape your life
If we had to choose between a sad life or a happy life we’d choose happy any day. It’s not anyone’s intention to live a miserable life. Our thoughts dictate the life we live.
While you can see the negative impact in the example above, there could have been an alternative.
Thinking about what you really want, vs what you don’t want is the key to shaping your life in a positive way.
In my case, I told myself I was stuck in my former career for years. I convinced myself of a narrative while trying to break free from it. I blamed everyone and everything else and focused hard on those negative thoughts.
Every time something bad happened at work I had negative thoughts. Every time it got worse. I felt so stuck, unfulfilled and unhappy.
I had no idea I was choosing to stay and perpetuating more negativity when I had those thoughts.
When I realized the only thing “trapping” me in the career was myself, I was able to shift my thoughts.
I began meditating and journaling every day. I would practice telling myself the world needed the gifts I was given. I also told myself I was capable and able to give them to the world. I just needed to take action.
Confidence was key.
I then took every perceived negative situation and looked for the opportunity in it. Aka turned something bad into good.
The other thing I found really helpful was understanding everything is temporary. All the way from our thoughts, right down to our experiences. Thanks, Jay Shetty!
When we embrace negative thoughts we often feel like the situation will last forever. When we embrace positive thoughts we don’t ever want the moment to pass us by, but it does.
Funny how that works, eh? Looking through the lens that everything is temporary and never as bad you as think is super helpful.
We have thousands of thoughts per day. THOUSANDS. A single thought can change your life. ONE.
Start by taking one area of your life and shifting from negative to positive thoughts. Remember that the only barriers in your life are the ones you create.
It’s ok to struggle with going from negative to positive in your thoughts. Start by looking for the opportunity in each.
Then practice on repeating those positive thoughts. Consistency is key. Write it down if you need to, I do!
The more you focus on something, the more it will come true. The subconscious is a powerful tool in and of itself.
Summary – How your thoughts shape your life
Our thoughts are at the root of everything we do. Practicing consistency will lead to the life you want and were made to live.
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