Do you have a friend whose life always seems a breeze? Or do you know someone who annoyingly has it all, and who always seems to get everything handed to them?
Why is it that some people seem like they’ve won the lottery of life, whereas others, perhaps yourself included, need to work super hard for everything you want?
I’d like to share an idea with you today.
Have you ever heard of the saying ‘your thoughts become your reality’, and felt like it sounded quite airy-fairy and without substance?
I’ll let you in on a secret – that’s exactly what I thought, until I began to understand what it really meant.
I’d consider myself a realist. But I have come to realise that there are rational, practical reasons why your thoughts actually become your life.
This amazing story of Wilma Rudolph for example, literally gave me goose bumps while reading it. Wilma was born prematurely and shortly after birth, struck down by polio, a crippling disease which causes paralysis. The doctors said it was a miracle that she was alive, but that she would never be able to walk. Wilma however did not believe what the doctors said.
Not only did Wilma learn to walk, she began to play sports, and at age 13, running became a passion. At age 14, she outran all her friends, and at age 15, she was unbeatable. Wilma went on to win 3 gold medals at the 1960 Olympics, and as a results she became the fastest woman in the world.
This is the power your thoughts can have over your body, your actions and your life.
I believe there are a number of practical reasons why our thoughts literally BECOME our life, and I can warmly recommend Robin Sharma’s ‘The Little Black Book’ on this topic.
First of all, most of what we communicate with the outside world is done by facial expressions, tone of voice and body posture, not by actual words. If you’re meeting a new person and have a frown on your face, or an attitude of pessimism and negativity, it doesn’t matter WHAT you say, that person will not warm towards you, and the outcome will be unpleasant for you both.
The other reason why thoughts become your reality has to do with focus. As human beings, we are constantly bombarded with literally millions of new impressions every minute. When you think of this, it’s a miracle we actually get anything done. The human mind however has an amazing ability to focus on whatever it finds interesting and relevant.
This means that if you are in a particular mindset of say ‘I really want to look for new career inspiration’, then your ears will now prick up when something happens in your surroundings which could be useful. This happens subconsciously, without you noticing it most of the time.
It could be something your hear on TV, or something you read out of the corner of your eye while scrolling down your news feed. The point is, if you’re NOT in this state of mind, but instead something like ‘I’m so annoyed with my boss, I wish he’d just leave me alone’ or ‘I can’t wait to get home from work and crash in front of my TV’ – then guess what….
You will miss out on all the opportunities where your pre-programmed mind could have led you, to things and places that could potentially have change your life for the better.
The point is this:
Whatever your thoughts and beliefs about the world, you will notice the supporting evidence and ignore the rest.
Here’s more food for thought (pun intended:)
Did you know that humans have between 50,000 and 70,000 thoughts a day? The exact number is still debated, but scientists argue that between 80- 90% are repetitive.
Stop and think about that for a second.
If such a large proportion of thoughts are repetitive, then whatever main thoughts we carry around all day are extremely important.
In other words, positive as well as negative thinking is self-perpetuating, and as a result literally has the power to determine your life.
Why does this matter?
You will never go beyond your thinking. You will never become something MORE or BETTER, as long as the thoughts in your head are limited to the status quo.
In order to achieve interesting and extraordinary things in your life, you must have the thoughts and the dreams first, and you have to really work on the positive ones making up the majority.
Action follows thought. You literally become what you think about.
When I realised this I took a moment to sit down and reflect.
I urge you to to the same.
Take a quiet moment on a Sunday morning for yourself, and note what recurring, self-limiting thoughts you are carrying around all day and every day.
Then follow these 3 simple steps:
- Turn your limiting thoughts upside down
If the thought is ‘I hate my job and it’s making me miserable’, then turn it around like this ‘I’ve made decisions along the way, leading me to this job I’ve got now, which is making me unhappy. I am therefore making a new, active decision to make steps towards changing my job’.Your new goal, in this case, is ‘changing your job’. This goal is however still too abstract for you to realistically make it happen, so the next step is:
- Break down your goal into 5 manageable action points
Think about all the steps you need to take in order to make this happen, and set yourself a realistic, but aspirational deadline. Your first action point could be ‘get my 1st interview’. Then set yourself 3 practical tasks for the coming week, such as ‘make contact with 2 recruiters’, ‘find and read one article on revamping your CV’, and ‘reach out to a friend who has just made a career move’.
- Start visualising your new life. Don’t skip this step, believe me 🙂
Take 5 min in the morning or in the evening just before you go to sleep, where you actively visualise what it feels like to have your new, amazing job. Play out the scenes in your head. Where is your new office, what conversations are you having with your colleagues, and how do you feel when you’ve arrived home after a full day’s work. Really immerse yourself in this scenario.
Shakti Gawain’s book Creative Visualization really helped me develop some incredible techniques to make visualization fun, easy and most importantly, useful.
Visualising is no mumbo jumbo, it’s a super useful way to create and maintain focus and motivation on your new goal. Without this, you risk falling off track, get distracted and lose interest.
So remember, what you choose to focus on in your life will expand, so in the interest of your happiness and sense of purpose, work at changing the majority of your thoughts into positive thoughts.
Then take action on them, realistically and step by step, so you can create a more inspired and extraordinary life for yourself.
I wish you the best of luck.
If you feel you need some extra help and a kick up your butt, I’d be more than happy to discuss whether coaching is right for you.
PS: I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments!