Part 10# How are your thoughts?

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–youre right.”-Henry Ford

How healthy are your thoughts?  You talk to yourself more than any other person.  Monitoring our thoughts are imperative. How often do you say to yourself, “There is no way I can do that!” or “I am so bad at this!” ?

Being a teacher, I hear “I am terrible at math!” at least a billion times a year. Or they will tell you how bad they are at anything. Of course we don’t want the complete opposite and hear how awesome they are at a certain skill all the time. Don’t worry, their parents will tell you how AMAZING so and so is at something, or you’ll see it on social media…

Photo by Dariusz Sankowski on Unsplash

The stories we tell ourselves drive our behaviors more than you know. Stories can be our perceptions of things, or they can be our day to day thoughts. Think of it as the “self-fulfilling prophecy”.

Ameteur golfers do this ALL the time. Here is an example. I often golf with my dad (who is an excellent golfer at the age of 77, and I still haven’t beaten up, this is the year!). We were playing a match with some other guys and we were on the same team.  The third hole is fairly straight and it has some water on the right hand side. I smashed a drive down the middle of the fairway and I was in great position. As I set up to my ball, I thought “Just don’t hit it into the water.” I mean, how could I? I just hit an awesome drive, it’s a short shot, what could go wrong? 

I’m sure by now, you know what happened…. I hit it dead right into the water. You see, the brain is always listening. The above quote is what Ford was getting at. Your mindset can be a tremendous asset or it can be your biggest nightmare. Test it yourself. Think of something that terrifies you. For some of you, it might be spiders, or clowns, or wet koala bears. If you have never seen a wet koala, stop right now, and go google it.  Good luck sleeping, straight nightmare juice. Anyways, did you notice an uptick in your heart rate, or that nauseous feeling in your stomach? Maybe you started sweating a little bit. This is the stress response kicking in. If you are constantly thinking negatively, your brain and body will respond.

However, the opposite is true. Thinking positively about situations can change your mindset. Going back to golf, the best always talk about “seeing the shot that you need.” Meaning, as I step up to my shot, I need to visualize the ball flying through the air and see it land where you want it to. When we do this, the subconscious mind will move the body in the way that it needs to create the shot.

Will it happen every time? No, it won’t and that shouldn’t stop you from trying. Positive thinking is a skill. Just like any skill, it needs to be practiced.

Mind your thoughts, because they will determine your actions.

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