We are thinking every moment of every day. Thoughts are our way of making sense of the world around us. They are a function of human consciousness that will go on whether we like it or not. Like our beating hearts and other involuntary organ functioning, our brains will not stop thinking, but with practice, we can control what we think about, control our feelings and ultimately improve our lives.
Thinking itself may be an involuntary function, but what we think about can be a voluntary choice and our ability to do so is what creates our very own life experience.
Because thoughts are so automatic, it’s hard to realize that we are the ones creating them as we go. To most people, our personal thoughts are so instantaneous and automatic that we never really stop to question where they are coming from.
Every moment, we are constructing our own realities by building and placing our own thoughts, typically by default, as they are being pulled from our subconscious mind. Because we have no control over this part of our minds, I refer to the process as “Auto-Think”.
Auto-Think is allowing your subconscious mind to determine your every move. It’s simply accepting every thought and emotion that strikes you without ever questioning them.
Just as a computer program runs on it’s own, when we, the controllers, are not present, our subconscious minds automatically protect us and keep us safe by sifting through our past memories and experiences.
This can stop us from doing many things that could improve our lives such as trying new things, meeting new people and thinking big, big goals for our future. It causes us to give into all kinds of fears and sometimes react in inappropriate ways that just aren’t necessary for our survival. Sometimes our lives can become very distorted and unhappy.
You can, however, take your mind off of Auto-Think and “Think on Purpose” when you are experiencing a negative emotion and when your life is NOT actually being threatened. We, the controllers, have the ability to question whether or not we are truly in danger and then “insert our own data” into the our minds (The Human Operating System).
“The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognize that we ought to control our thoughts.” – Charles Darwin, English naturalist and geologist.
It’s completely natural to assume that what we see in life is factuality and that the people around us must be seeing the same things, feeling the same emotions, and coming to the same conclusions. But they aren’t. They may be similar, sure. But we are each experiencing our own realities based on our own pasts.
Once we truly realize that thinking is an ability that we can control, we can begin to dismiss the negative thoughts that cross and sometimes fill our minds. Instead of feeling the negative emotion that automatically attaches itself to a specific thought, we can learn to replace the negative thought with a positive one, sit back and reap the benefits.
“The best way to overcome undesirable or negative thoughts and feelings is to cultivate the positive ones.” – William Walker Atkinson, Attorney, merchant, publisher, and author, as well as an occultist and an American pioneer of the New Thought movement.
Life tends to become much easier once you realize that you are in control and that you do not have to accept what you are currently thinking or feeling.
“It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” – Aristotle, Greek philosopher and scientist.
The more you practice using your own ability to think for yourself, rather than allowing your subconscious brains, or even others, to do the work for you, the sooner you can work on imagining and creating your own incredible reality.
Your future truly is a blank canvas just waiting for you to imprint whatever you choose onto it and your thoughts are the paint.
“This world is but a canvas to our imagination.” – Henry David Thoreau, American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, and historian.
Having the ability to place a thought, which in turn creates or changes one’s reality, would have been considered witchcraft centuries ago. Some of the most successful people today are realizing that there is nothing to fear about being in control and it is quite refreshing to know that we do have a good measure of free will when it comes to how we want to feel, what we want to focus on, and the direction we want our lives to go in.
“We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far.” – Swami Vivekananda, Indian Hindu monk and chief disciple of the 19th-century saint Ramakrishna.
Consider trying this experiment:
Purposely place a thought in your mind and repeat it for as long as you choose. The longer you choose, the more you will see and experience.
For example, you can think to yourself, “I am thankful for everything that is the color red.” Once you focus on this thought, you will begin to see more red cars, red books, red signs, red logos, red hair, red flowers. You will notice that your couch cushion has a touch of red in it that you didn’t even realize was there. You will notice things that were always there, but your focus was never on finding them.
It’s vital, however, for you to realize that you can also think to yourself, “I hate the color red!” and you will see red everywhere as well, you will just become more disgusted as the day goes by.
That is why developing a positive mindset comes in pretty handy. It is always best to focus and think about things you want to see instead of what you do not want to see because either way, you will see and experience it on your canvas.
But this is not where the process ends.
This is actually where the fun part begins because when we begin to focus on the things we want to see, not only will we see things that already exist, such as things that are red, but by interacting with these things that we didn’t previously notice, different positive opportunities and experiences will begin to open up and arise that otherwise would not have happened.
This is how we change our reality.
This is how we can change our lives.
Focus your thoughts on what you want to see, hear, and experience so that you have a greater chance of unfolding more.
Create your very own masterpiece by questioning and redirecting your own thoughts.
You’ve got this.
About the Author: Michelle C. Ustaszeski-Hutchinson is the Founder and Executive Editor of The Teen Mentor, LLC, based in Coopersburg, Pennsylvania. She is a Personal Development Expert and The Faciliator of Wisdom. As co-author of 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, Michelle teamed with some of the top motivational gurus such as Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, Jim Rohn, Denis Waitley, and Joe Vitale in order to offer a compilation of self-improvement teachings. She has been quoted as a “Master of Success” among some of the worlds most famous thinkers and published in numerous books and on thousands of websites around the world. Read More…