Monday, December 6, 2010

Tidings of Comfort and Joy...

I've been thinking a lot lately about something my friend, Jacob said. He said, "Create a new fiction about yourself and it becomes true." I can't stress enough how important our inner dialogue is. The way we describe ourselves, the story we tell ourselves about our past, the words we choose and use every day create our lives. We are powerful beyond measure to guide our lives in the direction of our dreams and yet we mindlessly fall into habits that keep our lives the same - and then we wonder why things are not changing.

Jonas Chong, a clinical psychologist at the Sonaviv Medical Institute, tells us that we have, on an average about 60,000 thoughts a day - 87% of those thoughts are negative and repetitive. 97% of all negative thinking is a gross misrepresentation of reality. We are making it all up according to the stories that we continue to tell ourselves. Then we gather evidence that those stories are true and call them beliefs. It is a downward spiral from there and we find ourselves unhappy. The questions is, why do we always make it up on the downside? Why so negative?

I bring you tidings of comfort and great joy this season by reminding you that the changes you seek are not up to any force outside yourself. They lie within you. It's the best secret ever but it requires mindfulness. It requires diligence and attention because we're being asked to turn away from habits of thought that have become familiar. They are so ingrained in us that we don't even see how insidious they are. How many of us especially in this the busiest time of year, harp on how we're lacking in time, energy, money and resources? We dig the ditch of poverty in so many areas by constantly affirming what we don't have. Words themselves are not as powerful as the meaning we ascribe to them. It's how we think about what we say that's the most important. Use words like I can, I have, I'm happy about, I'm grateful for, I appreciate, and then watch even your body's posture change. Our bodies respond to the thoughts we feed it, as much as it does to the food we feed it. We have given certain words powerful meaning in our life. You know which ones they are by the way they make you feel. Stop using the words that make you feel bad. They make your moment unhappy, while at the same time becoming the blueprint for your next. You are the architect of your life. Start building a foundation for joy and happiness, rather than lack and despair. Let's stop arguing for our limitations. Listen to your words, what you say, how they make you feel and then stop the cycle. Don't let your mind chatter be as predictable as the seasons.

If there is an area in your life that is particularly lacking, grab onto an affirmation and as, Jacob goes on to say, "Say it until it becomes your truth and then look for the evidence of it." Look for evidence everywhere that your words are making a difference because you will find it. And then, give thanks for that evidence. Milk it for everything its worth. We talk about the bad things that happen ad nauseum, why not do the same for our moments of good? Your focus on the positive, even smallest of changes, will bring more of that into your life. Christiane Northrup talks about affirmations - words that affirm our good - as follows, "Affirmations don't make something happen, they make something welcome." If affirming that you are rich, when in fact you are struggling with your finances, is too hard for your mind to wrap itself around, instead try, 'Wouldn't it be great if...' Create scenarios in your brain for your life that feel great . Have fun with it. It becomes an attractive vibration. My husband likes to say, "The thing I like about that is..." He mines a situation for any good he can find there. Whether we act out something in our life or simply in our head, our brain does not discern one over the other as reality. Our thoughts create. As Napoleon Hill, author of Think And Grow Rich said, "Thoughts have the peculiar quality of becoming their physical equivalence."

Joy and happiness have been highly underrated in our society. If you're happy, you've been perceived as simple, not series or significant; seeing the world through rose colored glasses, Pollyanna-ish. But in fact it's the opposite. Joy is not some airy-fairy, silly concept. It is the basis for creation. It is what is at the depth of our being - the very thing we crave in our lives and try to obtain through so many faulty avenues. Joy is an ever present state, which can be found even at the depth of sorrow. It is not about avoiding challenges, grief or sorrow. It is about shedding light onto those experiences for their value, for their gift. Look for that joy in everything you do today and when you find it, when it hits you, you will have experienced indescribable happiness and peace.

Do not be addicted to the struggle that keeps your life the same. Stop the negative affirmations that sound like, "I never, you always, my luck, holidays are always like..." Change the dialogue, change the beliefs behind the words that keep you stuck. Remember, a belief is just a thought you just keep thinking. Betsy Otter Thompson, author of the insightful book, Walking Through Illusion says, "we don’t take our beliefs with us when we leave here, we take the love we found from having them." 

Have the courage to imbue your life with more joy and then watch everything change. Create a new fiction about yourself and you will attract the life you seek. It's one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself this holiday season. 

I leave you with a video about a young man who chose not to believe in the story of poverty for his life. He dreamed a new story for his life and then became it.  

Finally, as we wrap up this year, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude for you. I have such appreciation for each and every one of you who read this blog and take this journey with me. I applaud you for the work you are doing to change your life. It is contributing to the world in ways we've yet to imagine. You are all so very precious to me. Be comforted in the knowledge that on this journey, we are never alone and we are deeply loved. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Zan. Joy and happiness are our treasures...I'm always amazed how I get more response to my life when I am sad or angry than when I am projecting happiness. I could never understand this...I guess that's why they say, "It's so easy to laugh, it's so easy to hate, IT TAKES GUTS TO BE GENTLE AND KIND". I may not be kind and generous all the time, but I do my best.

    BTW, the video made me cry "with happiness and hope".