Shift Your Thinking & Get Results You’ll Love!
Your thinking colors far more than you might realize! Not satisfied with the results you’re getting personally or professionally? Time to examine the way you are thinking. Feeling stressed? Time to explore of your thoughts! Dissatisfied with your relationships? Your thoughts are a likely factor there too!
Don’t Underestimate the Power of Your Thoughts!
I recently read A Gentleman In Moscow by Amor Towles. I instantly fell in love with Towles’ unique way of creatively telling the story. The personal philosophy of the main character, The Count, really stuck with me. His unique philosophy was “meteorological”. In other words, he believed that the weather ruled the world because weather influenced everything. His proof: the empty city square outside his window that was the direct result of the 45-degree weather. A small shift to 5 degrees warmer led to a transformation in the square – the trees began blossoming, birds resumed chirping, and couples lingered on the benches.
The idea that the weather rules the world seems true when stormy weather puts the kibosh on plans to spend the day on the lake or when cool morning temps inspire me to do a little gardening. Weather does certainly does influence many activities!
In the same way, you’re thinking, directly influences your feelings, your feelings influence what you do, and what you do, in turn, determines your results. It doesn’t end there – your results have an impact on your thinking and the whole cycle repeats itself. If you want to get different results, that only becomes possible when you change how you think.
Thoughts are often so much a part of you that it’s tough to pinpoint the way of thinking that’s keeping you from getting where you want to be! Perhaps you will identify with one of these examples:
Here are some additional ways for you to improve your thinking:
1. Practice Gratitude
Focusing on all the many things you have to be grateful first thing in the morning forces you to think about what’s positive in your life. Have you tried keeping a gratitude journal, but haven’t been successful? What thought or belief is keeping you from making it a habit?
As a part of my morning routine, I journal five things that I’m grateful for. When I struggle to come up with five things, it’s a clue that perhaps my thinking is negative which will impact how I go about my day if I don’t take the time to identify the thinking behind my lack of gratitude.
2. Spend Time With God
Time in His presence, reading and meditating on Scripture – His love letter to you, praying and communing with Him transforms your thinking, In fact, skipping that time can have a negative consequences – not because it is something you should do, but because it is life-giving.
3. Re-frame Your Thoughts
The process of re-framing is choosing to shift your perspective regarding an event, situation, or way of thinking. There are a variety of ways to do that including shifting from…
- Past to future – “I’ve always been overweight” becomes, “What would make slimming down possible?”
- Future to past – “I can’t seem to get the traction on the habits I’m trying to develop,” becomes “What habits have you successfully incorporated into your life? What made adopting those habits possible?”
- Negative feeling to a positive feeling – “They’ve always treated me with hostility and that makes me sad,” becomes “What can I do to right now to be proactive in those relationships in a way that would make me happier?”
- Victimization to empowerment – “My children never listen to anything I say.” Becomes “What can I change to ensure they will listen to me?”
- Liability to asset – “I’m such a people person that I have a hard time getting things done… ,” becomes “What are some of the ways being a people person has helped you in your job or life?”
- Others to oneself – “They consistently overlook me when it comes to promotions!” becomes “What can you do to prepare yourself for the next role?”
- Passive to active – “I really don’t think I can sell myself,” becomes “What’s one small action step you can take towards sharing the value of what you can do for others?”
- Problem as an opportunity – “The pandemic has had an adverse effect on my career,” becomes “What opportunities has the pandemic created for you?”
- Weakness to a strength – “Being a mom has limited my career opportunities,” becomes “How has being a mom equipped you for a career?”
- Scarcity to abundance – “There’s not enough to go around when it comes to ____________,” becomes “There’s more than enough – how much do you need?”
This list is not exhaustive! What are some of the ways you could reframe your thoughts that I haven’t included here?
4. Evaluate Labels
Some labels have been given to you by others, and some labels you’ve given yourself! What kind of labels am I talking about? There are many different labels including I am…
- Not a good public speaker, mom, leader, etc.
- Stupid, too shy, too old, disorganized, etc.
- An introvert, extrovert, people pleaser, asthmatic, undisciplined, etc.
- Not creative, organized, a visionary, a writer, etc.
- A sports fan, gamer, golfer, musician, etc.
The way you label yourself influences your thinking! How are labels limiting you?
5. Identify Your Fear Monster
You are not alone! Everyone has a Fear Monster. It’s a belief that’s influencing your life in negative ways if left undetected! Discover what your Fear Monster’s name is here.
6. Get Skeptical!
Start challenging your thoughts! Why do you believe what you believe? The conclusions you come to – are they valid? Even the silly little conclusions you’ve arrived at have an impact on your feelings, actions, and results.
Seek the truth! Your negative thoughts, including your Fear Monster, will keep you from getting the results you’re after.
7. Pay Attention
What’s your self-talk like? Is it positive and encouraging or negative and critical? What are your words revealing about you? Every time you repeat something negative, you trick yourself into believing it’s true. Left unchecked, your negative thoughts and words will undermine your confidence, limit your potential, create stress, and keep success at bay. You don’t want that! Instead, pay attention and…
- Be more mindful of the ways you speak to yourself and the words you say out loud.
- Consider what you would say to yourself as a friend or if you truly loved yourself.
- Challenge your inner critic! Is what you are telling yourself a lie, an exaggeration, or just negative and unnecessary?
Weather impacts life in countless ways. Your thinking does too!When you take responsibility for your thoughts and let go of the victim mentality, you have the opportunity to positively impact your health, career, relationships, and more. When that happens, you are poised to get better results!How has shifting your thinking benefited you?