The brain will create a story in order to make sense of a situation. Sometimes the story is true and sometimes, it is not so accurate. Ever noticed that when you are unclear about how you are supposed to perceive a situation, you will assume a story? For this reason it is critical to check in with your story, ask yourself is this true or have I assumed? If you are stressed you are likely to create a negative narrative, so can you catch yourself in these moments to focus on the positive and what is factual?
Sometimes the stories that we live in stress us out and this can be really damaging to our mindset and health. Sometimes this stress is warranted and the stories are very real. Even in this scenario, we can alter how we are perceiving the stress, as this is always a choice.
Your brain will believe what you tell yourself. How you perceive what you believe fires a signal to your cells that typically goes one of two ways. You body will either respond to protect you, prioritising survival, or it will prioritise growth and repair pathways instead. It cannot do both at the same time.
How you think and feel is a mirror image of what occurs biochemically in your body.
An example of how this works : close your eyes and imagine you are putting half a lemon in your mouth. Now imagine you are chewing the flesh, sucking the sour juices of the lemon, keep chewing and swallowing that beautiful succulent lemon juice. Do you notice extra saliva in your mouth? Open your eyes, there is no lemon there. But using your thoughts your body believed there was and a biochemical reaction occurred.
How you think and feel is a mirror image of how you will perceive your environment.
Your thoughts also are a mirror of how you’ll interpret your reality around you. When you are wanting to optimise your health and resilience in times of change, give your body the best environment for it to choose repair and growth pathways.
Inner dialogue is key, what you tell yourself not only creates a signal to your cells. Your actions will mimic what you believe and you will inevitably create more of this around you. We try and make our beliefs true all day, this is how the brain works. Learn more about the RAS here.
For example : let’s say you lost your keys and you were late to work. Have you ever reacted like this : “of course I lost my keys, not another thing to happen to me today!”. That reaction is a clue and can show you what you are believing about yourself or how you are perceiving stress in your life. Ever noticed that when you react like this to something not going your way, typically correlates with something else in your life that is not going as planned? So losing your keys confirmed your belief for you and that was simply a trigger. But let’s flip the example and pretend you believed that things do work out for you, a positive belief, you may have reacted more like this : “oh bugga I lost my keys” and the reaction would have ended there and this event would not have thrown you.
It is amazing how much energy we used getting stressed in our reactions. Remember, our reactions are a clue as to what we are deeply believing about ourselves and our circumstances.
Your body believes what you tell it. Catch yourself when you are being critical to yourself and choose your thoughts. Flip the sentence around immediately and repeat the positive statement :
“I am not safe” - “I have everything that I need”
“I am not heard” - “I am heard and acknowledged”
“I am not worthy” - “I am enough”
“I am not liked” - “I am lovable”
“I am not good enough” - “I am magnificent"
“I am not successful” “I have achieved so much”
It takes 21 days to create a new habit. Have a morning and evening ritual to check in with your mind, thoughts, feelings and body. It is great to have a Bend Like Bamboo wristband or elastic band on during the day to catch yourself in those moments where you are being critical of yourself too. Flick it when you catch yourself being negative, when you are assuming or when you are going back into autopilot, and choose your reaction again in the moment.
Train yourself to be more present in the moment, forget about the past and don’t think too much into the future. Right here and right now all there is what you need to focus on, when you are being conscious and present you are in your most suggestible state as from this place you can choose a new program, a new narrative leading to happier and healthier you.
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