We’ve all heard this at some point and in some version. So what is the action plan? How can we apply this to our daily life?
Below is a conversation with someone who wanted to address some blocks in their life. This conversation is probably one most of us have had or are having. It’s a common conversation; one I’ve had with thousands of people over the past 25 years.
Below are the first steps I began taking on my journey to inner peace. I did not start or take this journey when I was happy. It first started at age 17, with a desire to live outside the dark (and all consuming) black hole that had become my world. For 20 years, through perseverance (and mostly thinking if I worked hard I could make it all happen) most of my dreams had come true! One day I mindfully woke up and thought “I have achieved my desires so how come I’m not happy?”
Once again, I did not start this next journey because I was happy. I was stressed on most levels. I often engaged in a running list of negative emotions (often disguised by a sense of superiority, sarcasm, acerbic comments and so on) and my mind mostly lived in negative thought loops. Put another way my ego was alive and active. Eventually I become numb; going through the motions of life without ever really living it!
I found joy at the absolute depths of my pain and human suffering, because I wanted to. It was a process and a journey. It was slow. I took those steps and it was messy, I stumbled often, often I felt embarrassed or flinched rethinking how I reacted or mistakes I made along the way…. I stood back up and kept putting one foot in front of the other.
The difference is, this time I started the journey alive, aware of my thoughts, and with mindful intention. I found joy. I truly believe and live in that joy. Joy for me is an ever present choice. This means I can tap into joy whenever I’m willing to! I am joyful often. Most of my thought patterns are centered in love now. Gone are the old negative thought pattern loops. When I do engage in limiting behavior, it’s less intense, and I stay there for much shorter periods.
So here is a conversation I often had with self, that I now share with others also seeking.
Coach: See how easy it is to start with “I don’t want statements”. Be mindful of how often you start a thought or conversation with “I don’t want, I don’t like, I hate that”…..
Step 1 – Be Mindful
Step 2 – Flip It
This is flipping it! You instead restated the same thing:
“I want to be happy in life have good friend’s. Real love and own some stuff.”
So every thought and action you have ask yourself this:
Will this thought or belief make me happy, attract quality friends, real love or help me live comfortably?
If the answer is no, then ask yourself:
What thought will bring me joy, attract quality friends, real love, or help me live comfortably.
When I think of that person and how they treated me, I get really angry.
Does this thought bring me joy?
How can I flip it?
Why would I let others opinions/actions have the power to effect my mood? Their opinion does not who I am. It does not add to the quality of my life. Show up to work for me. Bring me inner peace.
So I forgive this person because it will set me free – I want to be free from negative thought patterns so that I may experience joy!
Now here’s the work! We have to do this over and over and over and over and over ….. it could take an instant or years on some issues to let them go.
So we need a reminder!
The reminder is this: I am doing this work to be joyful. Say that over and over.
If you don’t know how to flip it, say I’m pissed and don’t know how to flip. So I am going to focus on a thought that brings me joy and put this thought aside. I am open to gain understanding so that I can be set free of whatever this person or situation did to ignite this reaction within me. I choose to do this because I want to be happy. This anger no longer serves me. This thought pattern about why people do this no longer serves me.
And do it over and over and over.
Change takes work.
The choice is always ours. The choice to choose what we focus our energy on!
Do this for three days.
Write down what you notice.
And let’s touch back and see how this goes.