#16 STOP and Think! It May Change Your Life!

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by Mike Lally

Stop and think for a moment. Consider the following question: What have you changed your mind about recently? In fact, how often are you prepared to change your mind?

Is being right of sole importance to you? I think there is such a thing as a psychology of success, and it requires a bit of soul-searching.

I would like you to delve a little bit deeper and ask yourself: Do I have a personal philosophy – a vision of sorts? A positive mindset underpins the psychology of success.

A specific mind set is developed through having a personal philosophy. If having a philosophical viewpoint is worthwhile then it becomes essential to reflect on the beliefs you hold, particularly those that may not be serving you. At times you have to stop and think.

The big question: Do many of your beliefs result in a payoff? If so, do they produce the outcome you desire?

In truth, most of us have beliefs about all kinds of things, some of which prevent us from achieving what is preferable and more than possible.

Getting a handle on the inventory of our beliefs and making a decision to change some of them is a smart, welcome move.

So, what do you believe that isn’t serving you particularly well? Are you being inflexible? Again, stop and think for a moment. Do you have a positive mindset? Are you often prepared to accept that there may be a better way of doing something?

Can you easily adapt and adopt a different approach to your life? How flexible is your mindset?

If you are prepared to think differently, it begins to soften long-held but questionable beliefs. This act becomes part of a new philosophy, one which can start to underpin many ongoing actions and behaviours.

A pattern of thinking has been altered. Your mindset has changed. Having flexibility and changing your mind demonstrates strength.

This is a psychology of success in action. Amplify this approach and suddenly life and its opportunities begins to open up. Could anything be more important than this?

Beliefs are notoriously error prone. Unlike science which focuses on indisputable facts, our thoughts are loosely based on conditioning and significant emotional experiences.

Simple one-off events quickly graduate and morph into a lifetime of conviction. Mere chance can form a way of thinking that leaves the best of us hamstrung, uncertain and unyielding. You may be interested to know that there is a simple remedy.

Begin to “watch” your thoughts and the words you use on a daily basis. As a rudimentary exercise, start to get serious about all negative thinking you may find yourself engaged in.

Decide to stop the negative thoughts that flow through your mind. This will free you up. This is a mind set change. How can this be done?

Spend a little concentrated time, perhaps when you are alone for a decent period, and examine the thought patterns you habitually find yourself thinking.

After completing this exercise for a few days you will have at your disposal certain comparative evidence that will prove how often you resort to negative, and hopefully, positive thinking.

Don’t be surprised if the negative thoughts win out! Then take the next step.

Create an anchor you can use whenever a thought you do not want to have starts to surface. Perhaps a straightforward auditory anchor such as the word “STOP” can be adopted.

The moment a negative thought comes into your consciousness tell your mind to “STOP!” then think of something positive. Or better still simply reframe the negative thought. Train your mind and it will soon get the message!

It will not be possible to prevent all negative thoughts occurring, so just accept this and be content that your unconscious is learning a new, more useful pattern. Repetition is the key!

If you realise that you have just allowed a negative thought to occur without censure do not repeat the thought and correct yourself.

Let it go and stop and think. Then attempt to tack something positive on to the end of it if you realise what has happened in a timely manner.

Never add additional strength to a negative thought by purposely repeating it.

Be aware that thoughts create words and words lead to behaviours. Once a pattern is established by repeating it a number of times a habit has been formed. Words are anchors.

If you find yourself saying “I can’t” you are educating your unconscious mind and before long you will have formed a limiting belief. Try this exercise for a few days and enjoy the results because they will be forthcoming!

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