As usual, I have to start this post with an apology for not being more consistent with my blog updates, but between summer vacation and my course work, there has been little time to share my latest insights. I’m now 9 months (about three quarters) of the way through this course, and as I head into the home stretch, I feel this is a good time to summarize what I’ve learned and how it has impacted my life.
NOW IS REALLY THE ONLY TIME WE HAVE!
I know this is not a new concept, but I feel it’s worth mentioning, here. The past is gone… it already happened and it only exists as a memory in your mind. It cannot affect your present moment unless you choose to give it life by focusing your attention on it. While it may be helpful at times to reminisce, or to recall an unsatisfactory experience (so as to avoid repeating it), spending your time regurgitating the past has very little upside. And, considering how inaccurate our perceptions are and how they can become distorted over time, it is questionable how “true” these memories actually are. In fact, you can do processes that can reframe and transform the past into something that is totally different than whatever it was you thought happened at the time of the original experience. The future doesn’t yet exist, and although you can create a compelling future that can assist you in generating a more joyful present, you can only actually experience it in the now moment. Some of you may feel that “living in the now” sounds pretty boring and “flat”, but I can assure you that it is extremely satisfying and transformative. Which brings me to my next point:
ARE YOU THINKING YOUR THOUGHTS, OR ARE THEY THINKING YOU?
Stop for a second and contemplate this question. What is the content of your internal conversation? Is it random thoughts that just seem to appear on the screen of your mind, or are you actually engaged in a conversation that you initiated on purpose? Do you spend most of your day listening to thoughts that seem to appear out of nowhere, or are you able to deliberately choose what you want to focus on? I once heard a metaphor that went something like this: You are the captain of your ship… you have a crew that does all the work, but you must decide what each person is assigned to do. If you don’t take conscious command of the ship, the crew will do it’s best to keep things running, but the results may not be optimal. Who’s steering your ship? Let that sink in a bit, as we move on to my next premise:
LIFE IS A CONVERSATION!
It has been my experience that when I repeat a thought often enough, it becomes a belief… and beliefs, at the very least, color all my experiences, and, as I’ve come to see, can actually create all that happens in my life. The beliefs I have at any moment are the result of some sort of thought that I internalized and repeated, over and over, until it became so true for me that I can’t remember a time it wasn’t an integral part of “who I am”. Certainly, there are some beliefs that I can easily recognize as something I learned, but there are many more that run my life and yet are below my conscious awareness… they are my unconscious beliefs that have become transparent to me. When I live my life from these deep-rooted, unconscious beliefs, I become a walking jukebox… push the right combination of buttons, and I’ll play your tune. This is a reactionary way to live and it is disempowering and sterile… and, it eventually lead us to:
We all have “stories” about how life “is”… they are an accumulation of past experiences, thoughts, beliefs, values, etc. Most of these “stories” originated with our parents, teachers and guardians when we were very young, and have become our world view. They run our lives and we seldom question them. If a friend asks you how things are going, you usually reply with the latest version of your “story”, repeating the same old song, in an effort to rationalize why “shit happens”, “life is hard and then you die”, “I had a run of bad luck”, “there are no decent mates around”, etc.. Of course, we get a lot of agreement form our friends, who share many of the same beliefs. And, not surprisingly, our lives seem to keep repeating those same old patterns! When I fully understood the impact this had on the quality of my life, I made a firm commitment to do something about it… so, I decided to:
CHANGE THE CONVERSATION
Sounds simple enough, right? Change your internal conversation, and after awhile this becomes your new belief system, and your life is transformed. Well, although the process is fairly straight-forward, it does take a lot of vigilance and some effort… you will need to monitor your thoughts moment-to-moment, notice how they feel and choose something that feels better. This is the key to the Law of Attraction, and it’s sister, the Law of Deliberate Creation. Each of us has a built in Emotional GPS that warns off when we are off-track. If it feels bad, you are out of alignment with your highest good… if it feels good, you are in the flow, and life becomes a series of empowering and fulfilling experiences. So, it goes like this: what am I feeling? Does it feel good? If not, what thought would feel better? Admittedly, this is an art and it takes consistent practice and the application of certain processes to create any meaningful change. Fortunately for you, this can be taught, and, in case you were wondering, the course I’m taking has furnished me with the tools and techniques that anyone can learn to implement. If you are curious, or want to experience a free introductory session, please contact me. (see widget at top right)