Our thoughts are our instructions
Have you ever heard the comment, ‘your thoughts are instructions to your mind’?
I frequently, in my coaching and therapy work, explore the concept of words and thoughts with clients, and their parents. We often, fail to recognise that our thoughts are literally telling our brain what to think/feel/do/behave/respond/look for.
Stay with me…
Our brain is working 24 hours a day. When we talk about ourselves, our brain is ALWAYS listening. If your words about yourself are positive, you open your mind to opportunities, if you are negative about yourself, you limit yourself.
Become your beliefs
Which become your story
Which become your values
Which become your future
Subsequently, this impacts our feelings, our behaviours and the action that we do or do not take. Our thoughts are our belief systems, and control our optimism, pessimism and the steps that we do or do not take moving forward.
When our story becomes one of lack and scarcity:
“I’m not good enough’
“People like me can’t do that”
“I’m not clever enough”
“I’m not fast enough”
“Noone likes me”
“Everyone thinks I am stupid”
We give our brain a set of instructions, and it will listen to EVERYTHING. Sometimes, these thoughts come from things we hear from those around us:
“Why don’t you listen”
“Why don’t you just do as you are told”
“Why are you so stupid”
“Why don’t you try harder”
But, sometimes, it may come from our comparisons to others, or from what we consume (social media, television, news), it may come from our connections (listening to negativity from others) or the music, films, books etc that we review all day. If we surround ourselves with negativity, we will become an equivalent of it.
Remember that saying: “We become the average of the 5 people we spend most time with”
The reality is, that if we spend time with 5 optimistic people, we will find ourselves with increased optimism and wanting to push ourselves further. If we spend time with 5 people who are in a space of scarcity, we will focus our minds on the lack in our lives and feel more sad or resentful.
Our minds are like a lens. We can take control of where we focus it. Whilst this can sometimes feel difficult, when we take conscious steps to open up to opportunity, we can also see a significant improvement in our mental health and well-being.
We don’t need to walk away from all of our connections, we do however need to take conscious steps to consider how we balance the types of conversations, input and information that we consume every single day. As all of it contributes to our thoughts, the way we contribute to that, is our choice.
“I am capable”
“I am enough”
“I am loved, I am safe”
“I can do anything that I put energy into”
So, how can we take the first steps:
- Be consciously aware of what you say about yourself, when it is negative, correct it.
- Be consciously aware of how you speak about others.
- Be aware of the actual evidence, when talking about yourself and others consider what is true.
- Practice gratitude daily.
- Reflect daily on our wins and achievements – what are you pleased you did?
Want to learn more?
If you want to learn more about emotional literacy you can join our Level 4 training (here) or keep an eye out for our online emotional literacy courses coming soon (here).
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