This last month has been a time of mixed emotions for me. Our son has learned how to fall, stand up and get running again. His wonderfully excited laughter as he runs through the house is highly contagious. Furthermore, I have been able to reach more people than ever through my seminars.
However, three fantastic people that I knew passed away from cancer. One was my childhood hero Severiano Ballesteros. He was the reason that I learned Spanish (to be able to learn how to play bunker shots from him in his native language – motivation to study comes in many forms;-) No one was more alive on a golf course than he was.
The other two women who are not that famous except to the people who got to experience their kindness, love and innate strength all the way up to the end. Great examples of how life is all about how we think about it and how precious it is to be alive and that we should never take it for granted (check out an inspiring video here on how a brush with death can change anyone’s life).
This week I take a look at the relationship we have with our thoughts and how it affects our experience of life. Probably nothing new about that for you, but there is a little twist to the story. Subtle difference in comparison to what most of us have been brought up to believe and when you pick it up your world might take quantum leap for the better…
Gör ditt liv till ett Mästerverk,
Quote of the month
" Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. "
- Albert Einstein
All-you-can-eat mental buffet
What’s your philosophy of life? Might not be the easiest question to answer, because in my experience people in general are pretty unaware of having one. In fact, they would say that the very idea that the way they see the world isn’t how it ”actually is” is ludicrous. That how they think has little or nothing to do with how they experience their lives. This rather egocentric outlook on life can make it hard to understand how other people can view ”the same thing” so differently from us.
For example studies show that witnesses of accidents and crimes invariably give different accounts of what happened even though they have seen the same series of events. They can claim that the perpetrator was dark skinned and tall when he was average height and fair skinned and still pass a lie detector test with flying colors. Which means that we can all bear false witness to the events of our lives and still be convinced that we are right. An honest mistake that affects our judicial system in general and have devastating effects on someone wrongly accused in particular.
Hopefully you find this interesting in and of itself, but how is this relevant to our lives? Well, according to me we have a tendency to take our own witness account of what’s going on in our lives way too seriously. I have had clients who were dead sure that something was done to them and felt bad about it for years. What they fail to see is that they took a thought passing through their minds and saw it as etched in stone and ”real”. The only evidence supplied being that they were the ones thinking it. Which in turn led to them sentencing themselves to years of emotional imprisonment.
Because we all have a tendency to believe that if we thought it, it has to be correct and be taken with the utmost sincerity. That our own testimonials always are beyond reproach and anyone who tries to contradict that is just plain wrong. Instead of realizing that we all have plenty of thoughts that swirl through our heads on a daily basis and that most of them aren’t even hearsay and have nothing to do with ”reality”.
Once you see this it’s seems so obvious that our experience fluctuates with our thoughts and how seriously we take them. In one moment you think your partner is the best thing that ever happened to you and in the next you wonder why you got together with them in the first place. If you can’t relate to that because you’re not in a relationship right now maybe you notice it by thinking that being single is the height of freedom in the morning, only to feel that it is the curse of loneliness in the evening. The situation hasn’t changed. Only your thoughts and your willingness to bear witness to them changed.
So, an important key to personal freedom is to realize that you don’t have to take all your own thoughts so seriously. That your mind is kind of like sitting down to a wonderful, overflowing all-you-can-eat buffet loaded with every food you can think of. Would it then matter if there were plenty of things on it that you don’t like? Of course not! You’re only going to eat whatever you personally like. Same thing with your mental buffet of daily thoughts. Who cares if some of them are ”weird” or ”painful”? We all get served those. The only difference for people who are happy and successful is that they understand that you only have to ”eat” the ones you like.
Are you following me so far? In any case it is my intention with this coaching letter to open up your mind to the reality that your thoughts are affecting your world rather than the other way around. To benefit from that insight you don’t have to work on applying it. In fact, my suggestion is that you simply notice whatever thoughts are getting loaded on to your ”mental buffet” and leave anything that’s not to your liking on the table. And when something shows up that stirs the eternal flame of inspiration in you, then by all means fill your plate to the brim with it.
Once you see that your thoughts, in all but short spurts, are outside of your control you take them with a grain of salt. What used to bother you becomes impersonal non-favorites to be left on the buffet. All of a sudden as if by a touch of magic you regain the emotional freedom we were all born with. That’s a thought worth having as a dessert, isn’t it?
If you’re looking for a book that really gives you ”something”, then look no further. In it Michael, who will be coming to Sweden and Gothenburg the 23rd of September, shares the kind kind of knowledge that his clients pay $65.000 for in yearly coaching. Simple yet effective thoughts that will almost effortlessly leave you happier, satisfied with life and and with more everything else you really want…
You can find more books under Suggested Reading
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As an integral part of living my vision "to inspire, educate and make a difference in enough peoples private and professional lives to make a positive difference in the world", I write and distribute a free monthly coaching letter. In these I share various ideas, thoughts and insights that I think can be of value for all of you who are interested in getting the absolute best out of life.Read more