“Change your thoughts, and you change your world.”
~ Norman Vincent Peale
I’m not one for owning beliefs or thoughts that I don’t feel will benefit me in a positive way.
That is why when you read my articles, blog posts and Facebook updates you’ll often find me saying that “I seem to be…” I learned this trick years ago to take control and create the kind of the life I chose (and still choose) to live.
As an example of this, you might notice that I rarely claim to be sick – who wants to own sickness like that – instead I say that I seem to be sick. I mean, it may look like being sick, it might even feel a little like being sick…but it’s not the same as being sick…it just SEEMS like it is (or closely resembles it without actually BEING it).
The power behind this thought if very similar to saying “I/I’ll never…” You don’t want to own that you’ll never be rich, never find love, never get pregnant or never be healthy or safe…unless of course, that’s something that DO want in your life (not to be pregnant, not to be rich, not to find love, not to be healthy or safe, etc.).
Yes, this is a bit of a silly game of semantics. And yes, I know it sometimes makes for some awkward sentence structure. But it’s worth it to me.
You see, I really believe that there’s some powerful magic and mojo in our thoughts and our words [tweet this]. And I only want to own or posses thoughts that work for me and build me up…those that serve me well, and don’t bring me down or limit who I am or want to be.
One of my mentors and coaches, Maryam Webster wrote a book call Everyday Bliss for Busy Women a couple years back. One of the many exercises that has stuck with me, that I really got a lot out of was her Beliefs Inventory. I wanted to share a summary of that exercise that I included in my Take Control of Your Year: 5 Simple Steps to Make This Year Your Most Successful Year! Success Packet (you can pick up your free copy here) below.
I think you’ll find the exercise to be very useful in ridding yourself of those beliefs that no longer serve you or your higher, bigger, bolder purpose.
Another useful tool to start your year off on the right foot is to use a Beliefs Inventory to assess what positive and negative beliefs you live with as a day-to-day part of your life. This is adapted from an exercise I read about in Everyday Bliss for Busy Women by Maryam Webster.
Divide a sheet of paper in two columns. On one side you list the positive, encouraging beliefs that you have: I am smart, I’m good with kids, I’m very organized, I love to clean my home, I attract friends easily, etc. On the other side, you list the negative beliefs: I’ll never find a husband, I’m too old to start my own business, money doesn’t grow on trees, my competition is better than me, I’m too fat, etc.
Again, this is a no-holds barred kind of activity. Your goal is to look for your strengths, abilities and talents, and to identify the thoughts that hold you back and are a core part of your personality.
The cool thing about this exercise is that once you start to identify the thoughts that hold you back or influence the decisions you make, you can start to either reframe them or eliminate them.
ACTION PLAN: After completing the exercise above, choose to release at least one thought or belief that no longer serves you.
Photo: Sean and Lauren