Below is a portion taken from a chapter in my new book, More Than Enough: Discover Your Limitless Potential and Live Your Bravest Dream. Photo Image compliments of Michelle Sohn [Michellejoyhope@gmail.com]
I want to resolve for you once and for all that you do not have to believe every single thought in your head. Our minds are constantly chatting. Some call it mind chatter. Others, monkey mind. Others may even call it the devil! Regardless, this nonstop babble going on in our minds is always going to be there. I want you to know that you do not have to believe it. You get to choose what you listen to!
The problem with believing the non-stop mind chatter is it can take us down faster than a punch in the stomach. We listen to this mind chatter over and over tell us: you are stupid, you are ugly, you will never amount to anything, you will never be paid a fair wage, you don’t deserve more, you are not enough, you are pathetic. You can’t write a book. Who do you think you are? No one wants to hear what you have to say! You begin to believe it. It’s all you know. Soon, your self-esteem and self-worth are so far in the dumps you can hardly see over the mound of lies.
Mind chatter can be relentless and just about drive you nuts, until you’re able to recognize it for what it is… just chatter. I love the definition of chatter… purposeless or foolish talk. That’s exactly what goes on in most of our heads daily. Foolish talk. No purpose to it.
At an early age, I would hear over and over from influential adults and other children alike… you’re fat, you’re ugly, you’re stupid, and you’re worthless. Over time, they didn’t even have to say it; I would repeat it in my head myself. That’s all I heard. All I knew.
Numerous studies have proven for every thought we think there is a chemical reaction that sends messages throughout our body. I knew if I began sending positive messages to my body, it would eventually reflect that cheerful image. For example, often dread would come over me regarding an upcoming event. I would begin to feel listless, tired, angry, and even frustrated thinking about what may or may not happen.
As I began noticing the negative thoughts, I would reframe them to envision my ideal outcome. I would focus on the best case scenario, not the worst. It wasn’t long before my mood began improving with a brighter outlook. With each reframe of the negative thoughts, my energy even seemed to magically increase.
As you hear the mind chatter speaking foolish talk, acknowledge it. Experts on this topic differ on their opinions… some say to ignore it and let it pass. Others encourage you to recognize it for what it is foolish talk and even tell yourself the opposite. For example, if your mind chatter may repeatedly tell you, “You are fat. I can’t believe you’re even thinking of eating today,” in your stillness, you become aware of the thought that is running in your mind and turn it around and say back to yourself, “I am beautifully and wonderfully made. I am healthy, healed, and whole. Everything I eat benefits me.” I recommend using the method that works best for you.
For whatever reason, I never understood for years that the talk inside my head wasn’t necessarily true. I can decide whether or not to believe it. When I realized this, it was life changing! I didn’t have to believe everything my own head was screaming at me! I could sit back and let it talk all it wanted while I chose what was true and what wasn’t.
CLARITY. CONFIDENCE. CONNECTION.
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