Changing The Way You Think About Yourself

by Chris Widener

   Deep within every human lies a small but extremely powerful place. It is inside of you and it is inside of me. The "greatest" have it as do the "least."
   Yet no one has ever been able to find it. It does not exist as a physical entity. You cannot touch it nor isolate it to study it. Yet it is there. And it probably has more to do with what you are, and what you accomplish than anything else.
   What is it? It is that small voice that speaks all day long.
   For some, it says, "Come on, you're crazy to think that way." Or perhaps, "Nobody likes you." Or, "You can't do it."
   For others that voice says, "If they can do it, so can you." Or it says, "People like you. You are engaging." Or perhaps, "You have what it takes to be on the playing field with these others."
   And I believe that what that voice says will determine what you become and what you accomplish. Why? Because that is your voice. You are the one who says those things to yourself.
   "No Chris! That is what my mother said to me! That is what my 10th grade English teacher said to me!" Maybe they did. But the fact is that while they said it then, you say it now. You heard it, you remembered it, and you repeat it. Take ownership of that.
   If what you heard was negative, then you will most likely repeat negative thoughts and you will reap negative results. (Side note: This ought to give us lots to think about as we talk to our children or grandchildren! What we say to them now is what they will most likely be remembering and repeating to themselves down the road. So give them good things to repeat.)
   Are you repeating negative things to yourself? Is that a major force in keeping you down? Maybe you are even very successful, but it keeps you from that last level of achievement. Maybe you are the senior vice-president of a corporation but someone told you long ago that you are a GREAT helper but you should never be in charge. Are you still telling yourself that and keeping yourself from the corner office?
   Okay, so I have you on board and you are saying, "YES Chris - That is me! But what can I do?"
   The key is changing what you think about yourself.
   It won't be easy, but it is possible. The older you are the more tapes you have to erase. It is possible however - and highly probable if you follow my three-fold bit of advice for changing the way you think about yourself:

Get radically ruthless about what you let into your brain!

   No more junk television! No more junk radio! No more junk books or magazines! Only allow yourself those things that will build you up and not tear you down!
   Instead of allowing negative input, be proactive and put good stuff into your mind. Start creating new ways of thinking.

Get radically ruthless about the kinds of people you let speak into your life.

   If you are trying to erase tapes and you have people around you creating new ones, then you need to get them out of your life or at least severely limit their input.
   Instead of allowing negative people in, start surrounding yourself with positive people. Join new groups until you find one that feels like a positive home. Start creating new relationships.

Get radically ruthless about doing things at which you know you will be successful.

   Stop doing things that you aren't able to do (at least yet). Stop setting yourself up for failure and the thoughts it brings.
   Instead, set yourself up with victories, even if they are just small ones! Begin to lay a foundation of positive thoughts like, "I did it! I was successful!"
   The secret to life is in taking control of what we think about ourselves. To get rid of the negative and create the positive. As we do that, we see our lives flourish! Spend some time today reflecting upon what kinds of input, people, and situations you allow into your life. And then make the appropriate changes.

One more time

   Out with the negative thoughts and in with the positive!
   Out with the negative people and in with the positive!
   Out with the failures and in with the successes!