Welcome to our September Newsletter
" A man is but the product of his thoughts - what he thinks, he becomes."
I hope you all enjoyed some time away over the summer and are happily settling back into your daily routines at work and at home. You may have noticed that I did not publish this newsletter over the summer; one of many steps I took to carve out extra time for family, friends and relaxation. Thank you to those who inquired and missed it. If, however, for whatever reason you no longer want to receive these monthly letters, you can unsubscribe below.
We have somewhere between 40,000 to 60,000 thoughts a day! Most are random, some are positive, but too many are negative. Negative thoughts become limited beliefs. Limited beliefs leave you trapped in experiences that can stunt your growth and keep you stuck in harmful patterns. In this newsletter you will read about the negative bias we have in our brains and how by inviting awareness around your thought system you can change this negative default to a positive one. It is no exaggeration to say that this practice can change your life.
The brain is constantly presented with items/people/events etc. that we judge. As it turns out, we don’t judge fairly. That’s right! Our brains are set up to have negativity dominance. What does that mean? It means that biologically our brains have more of a tendency towards a negative interpretation of an encounter than a positive one. Add to this the fact that negative thoughts have a greater surge of electrical activity in the cerebral cortex than positive thoughts, according to neuroscientists. The result? Our attitudes are more heavily influenced by downbeat news than good news.
For centuries of human development, our capacity to pay more attention to negative input helped us dodge danger and therefore survive. But in today’s world, we don’t need these survival mechanisms. In fact, the negative bias can sabotage our lives and poison our relationships with ourselves and with others.
How can you test whether your thoughts are predominantly negative or positive? A simple practice is to take the time to make note of your emotions and your reality. An awareness of your thoughts combined with an understanding of the power of negative bias gives you the tools to move away from old, destructive patterns of thinking.
What are you thinking?
Thought is a vital living force. Every thought makes a vibration and leaves an impression. These vibrations shape your mental, physical and spiritual body, creating the world you live in. Our collective thoughts shape our society and our universe. In and of themselves, the outer aspects of life are neutral. It is only the meaning we attach to a situation/person that determines our attitudes, opinions, emotions, and reactions to them. Having even a little control over your internal conversations will go a long way in shaping your external world.
Thoughts become words, words become actions, actions become habits, habits become character, character becomes your destiny.
Change your thoughts, change your life
In Mind Hacking
, Sir John Hargrave explains that we can become skillful at watching and creating our thoughts. He created a 21-day method for identifying, noting and replacing negativity. You can read about it here:https://www.mindhacki.ng/content.
What follows is a quick shortcut based on his writings and my own personal and professional experience:
- Set aside 10 minutes to focus on what you are thinking.
- Take note of negative thoughts, particularly those that recur often and those that reverberate in your emotions.
- Ask yourself some exploratory questions:
- What negative thought pattern is most persistent?
- How does it make me feel?
- What would I say to a friend if he/she was in this place?
- What positive thought could replace this?
Let’s say you become aware that you have a lot of negative thoughts about an upcoming presentation. You hear yourself saying: “This is too hard. I will fail. I can’t take this on.” You realize that these thoughts are making you anxious and afraid. Consider how you would encourage a friend who felt this way and remind yourself of negative bias. Then repeat something positive to yourself: “I know this material. I will prepare carefully. I’ve got this!”
Another pattern that frequently dominates our thinking is judgment of others. You may find yourself thinking: “Why does he always do this? He is so irritating. I really can’t stand him.” These thoughts may make you feel angry and frustrated. Again, how would you respond to a friend who was caught up in this pattern of thinking? Substitute positive thoughts: “Even though he annoys me, he is also always there to help me when I need him. I choose to love and accept him, even if I don’t always agree with his actions.”
This practice takes vigilance, patience, and discipline. Every time you start to find your thoughts drifting to the negative, make a conscious effort to reframe them in a positive way. Everything we perceive is a reflection of our internal reality. When you re-wire your brain to think positive, optimistic, loving, and successful thoughts you ultimately change both your perception and your reality. As the old saying goes: “As you see it, so it shall be.” Introducing positivity changes your energy field, making it light, bright and powerful enough to attract good things and people into your life.
I hope you found this newsletter helpful. I welcome any and all feedback and would love to hear any suggestions you might have for future newsletters.
With love and light,