Be In Charge Of Your Thoughts
Are you in charge of your thoughts, or are they always automatic, reflexive and spontaneous? I discovered if I want to control my thoughts, feelings, actions and life, I cannot let my brain always dictate what I think about.
Do you ever find yourself obsessing about a thought, an idea or a problem? Do you wish you could stop thinking about it?
You can! And you should acquire that skill!
Let me share with you how this principle was one of the biggest breakthroughs I have ever had after years of personal defeat in this area.
One of the major challenges of my life was worry. Perfectionist by nature, I would obsess, fixate and become consumed with a problem I had, or a project I was in charge of, or a schedule I was trying to plan. I couldn’t sleep well because I was thinking about it. I couldn’t listen well, because I was thinking about it. I became a prisoner of that thought, at least until my brain decided that it had a satisfactory resolution.
Can you relate?
Then, breakthrough! I discovered that worry can disappear completely if I can control my thoughts on the issues I am worried about. But I thought, “How can I stop my thoughts?”. And, “I should not stop my thoughts because I always come up with solutions when I am thinking about the problem.”
After searching and praying it came to me.
- Worry is solving problems at the wrong time. It is okay not to solve problems all the time. Give yourself permission to have “problem solving” free time. Decide when that is.
- Find out what thoughts are producing the worry.
- Aim to recognize them as soon as they happen.
- Decide what other thoughts you want to think about instead. If you have that pre-planned, it will be easier to stop one thought and insert another in its place, than just thinking of nothing.
- Start practicing the skill of controlling what you think about. This is very hard, but it can be done! Here is the exercise that helped me attain this skill. Count to 50 or 100 without allowing of any other thought to come to your mind, other than visualizing the written numbers. This takes a few weeks of dedicated practice. Try it now! When you can do that, you will have conquered the hardest step in controlling your thoughts.
Then start living in more freedom!
- Spot the thought to stop.
- Stop that thought you spot.
- Replace that thought.
Do you see the possibilities here?
No thoughts of discouragement; you get more courage. No thoughts of despair; you get more hope. No thoughts of hate; you get more love. No scornful thoughts of others; you become less critical.
Do not let your thoughts roam free – at least not all the time! Think about what you think about. Think before you think!
PS: If you think this blog can help someone you know, kindly consider forwarding!
Reading: This week I am reading the book Platform, by Michael Hyatt.