You want to change your results.
What you may not realize is that your thoughts cause your feelings, which in turn cause your actions and results.
This is why questioning thoughts is foundational to my coaching and my life.
Thoughts → Feelings → Behavior → Situation
Our thoughts are EVERYTHING!
Transition creates endlessly fearful thoughts
You’re going through some changes. Do you know exactly what you want? Has it been easy to create the life changes you desire? Are you living the life of your wildest dreams right now? I’ll bet not!
That’s why people like you and me invest in coaches.
Questioning your thoughts is particularly important during times of transition.
Our mind doesn’t like change. In an effort to protect us from danger, it does everything it can to prevent you from doing things differently. It does this by feeding you fear-based thoughts. So, working with these thoughts is critical if you want to live an amazing life.
Let’s be clear
In Alcoholics Anonymous, they say the first step to recovery is to admit you have a problem. If you don’t already know you have this problem, take a deep breath and trust that I’m sharing this with love:
You are delusional.
It’s OK, we all are! We walk around confused by our thoughts, which we treat like facts, and let them guide us towards behavior that doesn’t serve us. So before we dig into this work, let’s be clear about what a thought is and what it is not.
A fact is something known to be true by experience or observation. It can be tested and proven. AKA: truth, reality, law, rule
Example: There is a pile of clothes on the floor of my basement.
A thought is the product of mental activity. It is simply a product of your mind, and something with which not everyone on Earth would agree. AKA: idea, opinion, belief, reflection, judgment
Example: My basement is a mess.
So, while thoughts often feel true, can you see how the vast majority of what runs through your mind is not factual? (Technically, I would argue that none of our thoughts are factual, but that’s a philosophical point for another day!)
“You are a victim of the rules you live by.”Jenny Holzer, artist
Uncover your fear-based thoughts
The first step towards intentional change is awareness. What beliefs are keeping you stuck?
There are many ways to uncover limiting beliefs, from meditation to working with a Professional Life Coach. One DIY method I love is simple brainstorming.
Think of your most important goal. What are your biggest challenges to achieving this goal?
Write everything that comes to mind. Consider beliefs about yourself or other people (I’m not creative enough), if/then thoughts (If I had more money, then I could…), global beliefs (Everyone knows you can’t make money as a…), and shoulds or have tos (I have to ask so-and-so what they think.)
What will you need to believe instead to easily achieve your goal?
What would feel amazingly empowering?
Who do you have to believe yourself to be?
Remember the definitions I shared above for facts and thoughts. I have a goal to finish writing my memoir. I can think, “I’m not a good writer,” and I can think, “I’m an exceptional writer.” Relative to who? Can either be tested and proven? Certainly the second feels more empowering to me.
I’m not saying lie to yourself. I’m saying the world isn’t black and white, so you might as well intentionally choose thoughts that a) feel good, and b) literally empower you to do more.
Not sure what’s keeping you from achieving your goals? Struggling to see your stressful thoughts as anything but factual? Want to make a change and finally move forward with your biggest, wildest life dreams? I get it. And I’d love to help.