Thoughts…where it all begins.
Health goes beyond our physical body and the food we put in it. It is also about our thoughts/emotions and how we are feeling spiritually.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to get too ‘emo’ on ya!
At a recent staff get together, this question came up: “Of the 7 foundational principles of health that Sweet7 stands for, which one is the most important?”
The answer we agreed on was ‘thoughts’.
Now this is open to interpretation, but you might say thinking is the first step. Before anything happens, you first have your thoughts. Thoughts drive your emotions, emotions drive hormones. Thoughts also drive your actions which in turn have reactions.
With this in mind (see what I did there), we can now highlight how your thinking shapes your life.
The law of attraction is a belief that our thoughts and what we focus on manifest as experiences in our lives. It is a universal law that has been represented in differing manners within multiple civilizations and religions throughout history. Outside of spirituality teachings there is brain and behavioural research to support the law of attraction, and its basis stems deep into quantum physics. Science and complexity aside, it is summed up by the notion that ‘like attracts like’ and all thoughts eventually turn into things.
Now I don’t want to take this law to its extreme, but I want to use this as part of a basis to help you address your patterns of bad thought, or “stinking thinking”, that lead you on a path of negativity.
Have a think about the predominant thoughts of your day so far. Or even your week. What has the theme been? Has it been a theme that you are happy with? Does it fit with where you want to be and where you want your focus to be placed? If not, what can we do about this pattern?
I know there are real life situations that may be driving these thoughts and themes, and you can’t just think them away. But once these troubles have sent you into a pattern, they have a stem-on effect that impacts your thought patterns, general mood, and then your decisions and behaviour.
What we need to do is turn our thinking around from focusing on what we don’t want, to thinking about what we do value and making steps in the right direction. If we are only focusing on what we don’t want as a motivator, we are essentially walking backwards. Driving away while we face what’s behind us in the rear-view mirror. But here’s the curve ball, if we are dwelling on the negative we are inviting it to chase us. We are consuming ourselves with it. We are attracting it! Have you ever heard the saying “what consumes your thoughts, controls your life”?
Another important practice is to take time to appreciate the good and embrace the positive. There is current research showing that it is easier for the human brain to dwell on negativity. It is also easier to switch a positive ‘glass half full’ thought into a ‘glass half empty’ than it is to do the opposite. So unfortunately, staying positive takes work and it all starts with awareness. You need to actively recognize, accept, and re-direct the thought in order to make a change. First comes your thinking, and subsequently your mood, decision making and your actions.
Here I’m going to start you with two techniques you can use to begin flipping your outlook towards the positive and creating a better mindset for yourself:
- Start your day as you intend to continue it
Think of the start of your day as the makings of a snowball. If you start the day on the back foot, rushing and feeling out of time and caught up in future worries, then negative thoughts will tend to ramp up as you feel you are not in control of the wheel. Here comes the avalanche!!
On the flip side, if you start your day with some time to move at a comfortable pace, engage in some positive interactions, listen to or read something inspiring over breakfast, you set yourself up with the makings of a day marked by intent and fulfilment. Create a positive snow ball effect right from the get-go!
(You may not always have a lot of time to yourself in the morning, so being prepared, getting to bed at a reasonable hour, and rising with time on your side will be the keys to your success here!)
- Take time to appreciate things
Each evening, make a list of three things you are appreciative for. Legitimately appreciative! Set some thought there. You can write these down or discuss them with your partner, friend or flatty. Whatever you feel comfortable with.
See if you can balance out those complaints of the day that you bring home, with tales of the days experiences that made you thankful. Or better yet, stoked! Remember, it’s much easier to dwell on the negative. So, don’t forget the good. Spend some time soaking it up and sharing it.
Start applying these techniques to your day and we will build on these foundations in the coming weeks.
Let’s first see what these two points can bring to your state of wellbeing. Let’s see what kind of stem-on effect you can create in a positive direction. What have you got to lose? I mean you could always carry on the same. ‘Take the blue pill’. You already know the scenery on that path. Perhaps you’re not over it yet…
If you are having trouble with that voice between your ears and some of what I’m mentioning here resonates with you, I encourage you to watch the presentation below from Alison Ledgerwood which describes her scientific findings related to the positive vs negative mentality battle. Then have a wee look into the law of attraction. It’s empowering stuff.
Here are a few books we recommend:
How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy by Paul Chek
The Positivity Blog by Henrik Edberg
Psychology by Henry Gleitman, Daniel Reisberg & James Gross
Letting Go – The Pathway of Surrender by Dr. David R. Hawkins
And a couple of videos: