Small Shifts, Big Changes
You may have heard this, that small shifts in our thinking today, can and will lead to big changes in our lives in the future. The way we think about conditions in our lives are intrinsically related to how we respond to these conditions, whatever they may be. So if we want to create a new and different condition, we must begin with how we think about things, in the present moment. I have known this truth for years, and over and over again I am struck by the power of this. A few weeks ago, I saw myself getting entranced by some harsh conditions, letting these conditions determine my reactions. As the condition was one of great betrayal, false allegations and direct attacks, by simply reacting I was in a state of total defensiveness, fear, and anger. To shift my very actions, I had to shift how I thought about what was happening. I had to remove myself from the victim position, and regain my power.
I sought professional help and guidance. I looked for people who had experience dealing with such circumstances so that I could gain a clear perspective of what was really taking place. I then had to become an observer rather than an active participant of the condition. I had to separate myself from what was happening – what was happening, is not and will never be who I am, it is simply what is happening. Months prior I had spent time also looking at how I arrived at this place. I worked diligently to see how my old ways of thinking had bought me to this very present time condition. It has to be that way, that I am an integral participant in what is happening, like it or not. And, while the exercise of acknowledging this is fundamentally important, what is most essential is what I choose to do today, for today’s actions will become my future life. I cannot go back in time and change my thinking then, but I can and should reflect on how I want to create a shift today, so that my future does not become a repetition of this event.
Some times we need to be brought down to our knees, completely thrown off our center, literally broken to pieces before we can emerge as a new, and ultimately better version of ourselves. And, the fact is, we may have to go through this cycle of death and rebirth many times in a our lives. In regaining control of the situation, or at least regaining control of my response to current circumstances, I quickly felt a shift. It wasn’t a small and subtle shift – it was like waking up a different person. I began to see, smell and taste life again, more fully, and in that state of mind I quickly experienced the changes in my life that looked much more like what I wanted my life to be. Within two weeks I saw opportunities arising from the chaos and from there, ideas and new perspectives that turned into solutions and results I could not have imagined.
The best part of this realization, and the thing that brings me to a most humble gratitude for life itself, is that when I shift my thinking I am given immediate access to new inner dialogues. I go from overthinking, over-worrying, over-planning to a conversation of self-respect, self-love and kindness. This, in and of itself has tremendous benefits. I felt body aches go away and my sleep drastically improve. What we say to ourselves has the same impact as words we tell someone. If the words are harsh, we hurt, and if the words are kind, they appease and reassure us. Self dialogue has the disadvantage of going subconsciously unheard. We may not even notice it is there at all. The other problem with inner dialogue is that it is repetitive – it goes in a cycle day in day out. One of the ways we imprint new beliefs in our lives is through repetition, so, this quiet, and often unheard voice, has the power to take our lives into roads we never truly intended on navigating. They become imprinted belief systems that we never consciously invited in.
Shutting down the mean inner voice, and replacing it wth a kind, loving and all around positive voice is the exercise of a lifetime, and, as I am now experiencing, the most worthwhile one I can undertake.
I wanted to share this insight, yet again, with my loving community because no matter how many times we hear abut this, there is a reminder of its power is compensates for the risk of me being repetitive. One thing I learned from my 200 Yoga Teacher Training I did many years ago is that, a good teacher is one that can get the point across by saying the same thing in multiple ways. Drawing the shoulder blades down in into the chest, may make no sense to one person, and be totally fine for another. Maybe that person understands the same command with a different insight, like opening the chest and finding a small arch on the upper back, or something like that.
So I find myself wanting to find new ways to bring this point across as I simultaneously discover how in my own life, these experiences happen. One thing I know for sure, if you are reading this, and you are now open to listening, and believing, your whole life may begin to shift in incredibly positive ways, starting now.