Do you ever think about what you’re thinking about?
Sounds like a play on words, I know. It’s not meant to be.
If it didn’t click or you glossed over it the first time, take it a little slower this time and let the words and meaning really sink in.
Do you ever think about (pause…let the words you just read sink in…..continue when ready) what you’re thinking about?
Wait, meaning do I ever think about my thoughts? Is that what you mean? Joe that’s crazy talk!
I know. Really weird.
Believe me, it sounded just as ridiculous to me the first time I heard the question.
And then even more ridiculous, I found myself starting to explore what it really meant and then I was shocked when I realized how negative my thoughts were.
Determined to change and improve, I was pleasantly surprised when I learned how a couple simple daily success habits could change my thoughts and life for the better.
And now, I’ve become one of those weird people (trust me, I thought they were weird too) who talk to themselves every day and keep gratitude journals and do all sorts of unimaginable stuff I never though I’d be doing.
And I’ve never been happier. I’m happy and that is the greatest blessing along with loving ourselves that we can bestow upon ourselves.
After years of diligently studying personal development and neuroscience, the meaning and significance of the question is starting to click. I’ve still got a lot to learn but the results are undeniable, just ask anyone who knew me as a child and knows me now.
How did this change occur? By reading hundreds of personal development books, talking to mentors, and consciously surrounding myself with positive people. I’ve also developed some success habits and exercises to work on, monitor and control my thoughts (there’s a link at the end for these).
Believe me this was no overnight phenomena. It took me a couple years just to “get it” and then a couple more years to realize how important this stuff was to my happiness, relationships and living a successful, meaningful life. How long will it take to click? I cannot say. I think it’s different for everyone depending on our current thought patterns and self-talk, but once it clicks, life changes in a way that’s nearly impossible to explain in words.
It’s an indescribable feeling to wake up with a smile every day. And once we learn how to control our self-talk and thought patterns that is the beginning of the formula to learn to teach and motivate ourselves to do anything we want.
I know what some of you are thinking….”Hey Joe, if this is so important, how come our parents didn’t teach us this growing up? Huh?! Why didn’t we learn about this in school? ”
Those are very good questions and we’re all in the same boat here because I didn’t learn about it from my parents or take a class on it in school either.
Before we jump to conclusions about the education system and the parenting we received (I love you mom and dad), the answer about why we were not taught any of this may surprise you.
It didn’t exist before. Actually it did. But we didn’t understand enough about it for it to make sense.
Most of our parents didn’t know neuroscience even existed, let alone for it to become mainstream enough to be taught in the education system. You mean to tell me this stuff wasn’t around when our parents were growing up? Yep, that’s the truth. And if they didn’t learn about it, how could we expect them to teach us about it?
Some will argue we have known about this stuff for years.
William James was quoted as saying, “The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes of mind.” For the record, William James died in 1910.
Sure it has been out there but nothing like we’ve seen lately…..
While we as a species have studied the brain for many, many years, in the last 10 we have learned more about the brain than all previous years of brain study combined. Thanks to advances in technology we now have a much, much deeper understanding of how the brain’s 100 billion nerve cells work and connect.
For anyone who doesn’t know what neuroscience is, at the most basic level, neuroscience is the study of the brain and the nervous system. Google it to learn more. Look up guys like John Assaraf , Martin Seligman, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and Shawn Achor who are pioneers in the industry.
What’s amazes me most about neuroscience is that it proves beyond any doubt that our self-talk and our thought patterns affect our brains and our lives.
Considering I walked around with zero awareness of my thought patterns and the impact of self-talk for the first 25 years of my life, I’m guessing many of you still have no idea about this stuff and the power it can have on our lives.
I can safely hypothesize that a good number of of you reading this very blog post right now are not aware of your own thought patterns and self-talk.
And playing the odds, a few of you are completely oblivious to the fact that your thought patterns and self-talk are the single biggest thing holding you back in life right now. It’s not my opinion, neuroscience has proven it to be true.
And that’s a great news! Why? Because if you are the problem, then guess what? You are also the solution!
Until next time, keep learning and stay positive!
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A few links you might like:
- How to be Happy
- Change Your Thoughts Change Your Life – self-talk success habits
- The Happiness Advantage – TED Talk by Shawn Achor
- If you want help to start making positive changes to your thought patterns, self-talk and life, click here to learn more about the benefits of working with a coach and have your questions answered.