Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Reality
By Sharon Freedman
Actors, writers, directors, we’re all pieces in the big puzzle that makes up a particular project. It often feels like we’re at the mercy of other people to make all of our decisions for us. Sure, that’s the case when it comes to whether or not someone chooses to collaborate with you, but we always have a say in the decision too. More importantly we can choose how we feel about a situation. Just because you don’t get a certain job doesn’t automatically mean that you have to be upset and feel down and unfocused. The key to having greater control of your emotions is being able to get clear on what you’re actually feeling without judgment. This leads us to the second part of Mindfulness, DESCRIBE.
DESCRIBE is about separating our true thoughts and desires from our judgments of ourselves. I believe our thoughts create our reality and as the Buddha said, “ All that we are is a result of what we have thought.” I think it’s empowering to know that if you don’t like the direction of your life currently you have the power to change it by changing your thoughts. That being said you’re equally powerful when it comes to buying into a negative reality.
You know that nasty voice that says things to you like, “You’re not good enough to get that job?” or “You really f^&%$ that up!” or “Why even bother trying, ‘cuz you’re not going to get it anyway.” I refer to that voice as The Sabatour. The good news is that The Sabatour and your true self are not one in the same. The bad news is that The Sabatour owns real estate in your brain. The Sabatour’s job is to keep you safe and freaks out when presented with the possibility of change.
One really helpful way of dealing with The Sabatour is to personify it and then kill it with kindness. Honestly, taking some time now to get to know your Sabatour will save you boatloads of pain later. I’d suggest actually writing about or visually creating your Sabatour. Give it a name, describe what it looks like, what it says, when it appears. Then next time it speaks you can put a face to that voice, which will make it much easier to separate it from yourself. Then literally thank it for doing its job and tell it that it can go on break now. Finally, move full steam ahead toward whatever it warned you against or look at the situation from a more loving perspective because it only appears when you’re doing something that’s important to you.
When you buy into what The Sabatour is saying you end up judging yourself harshly. Then when you get upset at yourself for listening to The Sabatour you’re judging your judgment and it becomes a nasty cycle. The only way to stop that wheel from spinning is acceptance. You’re going to feel low sometimes, you’re going to listen to your Sabatour sometimes, and that’s OK. By working this way with your Sabatour you’ll get much better at trusting your instincts and feeling like you’re more in control of the reality of your life.
Next month we’re going to check out the final part of Mindfulness, PARTICIPATE. That’s a fun one and I can’t wait to tell you all about it.