As a little girl, I loved to draw. I told myself I was a good artist. Even when I didn’t like my drawings, I still believed I was creative and talented. I’ve kept this thought close to my heart and it has served me well throughout my life. I think of myself as a person with a creative soul and I’ve had a lot of success in my career as a graphic designer and artist because of this belief.
I’ve also told myself most of my life that I have a hard time learning new things. I would daydream in school and lose track of what the teacher was saying. When a class was tricky for me to understand, I would just drop out or stop going much because I believed that it was too hard for me to learn new things, and so I would stop trying. This way of thinking about myself has been a hindrance to my success and has been hard to overcome.
These are both just stories I told myself again and again, and just like a self-fulfilling prophecy, I proved them to be true. I then came to realize that this is the best news ever…If I create my results with what I told myself, then I can be mindful and believe whatever I want about myself.
Every issue we encounter in our lives can be broken down into 5 interrelated components, with one component affecting and leading to the other.
The first of these five components is our circumstances. Our circumstances are things outside of our control. This includes what other people do, our past, the weather, etc. Sometimes we forget that we can’t control these things and we spend lots of energy trying to. But even though we can’t control our circumstances, we can control how we think, how we feel, and how we behave.
Our circumstances are neutral. We add the drama with our thoughts about the situation.
Our brains have between 12,000 – 50,000 thoughts a day. Sometimes we are aware of the thoughts we are having, but often we aren’t. Since the root of any our problems is always our thinking about our circumstances, we need to get curious with ourselves and find the thoughts that are keeping us stuck. Here’s an example to help illustrate that it really is our thoughts about our life that cause the drama:
Think about the last time you lost your keys. The keys weren’t a problem until you needed to go somewhere and realized they were gone. Then, you started thinking “I can’t find my keys” along with thoughts of who might have lost them, or how could you be so careless. This is when your problem started.
Feelings come from the thoughts we have about our experiences and circumstances.
Imagine the feeling that losing your keys might bring. Panicked, stressed, annoyed? That feeling might start boiling through your body as you begin searching your house. Feelings are the emotions or vibrations in our bodies that we experience. Those feelings come directly from our thoughts.
The actions we take are caused by the feelings and emotions we are experiencing.
It’s true, our action or inaction is directly related to the feelings we are having. Thinking about losing your keys, thinking of someone to blame, then feeling stressed or annoyed, might bring about an action like yelling at your kids or getting mad at your partner or yourself for being so careless with the keys.
We are creating our own results by the thoughts, feelings, and actions we take.
Our continued results are the effects of our actions. In this situation, we see that we blame or get angry with everyone in our tracks, including ourselves. We lose control of our emotions.
Here’s the good news!
If we can recognize the thoughts that are leading to the cycles we’ve been stuck in, we can use it to our advantage. Once we know that we are creating our results with our thoughts, we can create any result we want!
I’ve generated amazing results in my life by first letting go of trying to change my circumstances and instead focusing on what thoughts I need to have to create feelings of confidence, peace, and compassion. These feelings lead to me take actions that in turn lead to the results of a better relationship with myself, my family and friends, and truly creating a life I enjoy and love.
I’m passionate about helping others recognize the thoughts that are keeping them stuck. If you’re ready to move on to a more compassionate, motivated version of yourself, I invite you to come work with me.
I promise you…when you invest and believe in yourself the possibilities are endless.