It’s more important than ever to know what you think and know how you came to that thought.
Whatever you call it… perspective, mindset, outlook, or viewpoint- we each carry around a set of beliefs that influence everything about how we show up in the world. Let me put that another way…..
Right now, each of us has a set of operating beliefs that direct our thinking. These thoughts influence our feelings which lead us to act a certain way in response to the feeling. Because we acted that way, our actions produce some kind of result. These results can sometimes be positive, and sometimes not so positive. Whether positive or negative, our operating beliefs direct our thinking, feeling, acting and doing. Eventually they give us some kind of result. The following illustrates the process from belief to outcome:
- Beliefs -> direct thinking
- Thinking -> influences feelings
- Feelings -> produce action
- Actions -> lead to outcomes
- Outcomes -> lead to patterns of behavior….that can either help or hinder our efforts to live our best life.
The great news is that you can choose to experience more consistent positive outcomes by choosing to be more intentional about what you think and by understanding where it came from! Positive outcomes come from positive thinking. Positive thinking comes from positive beliefs.
When is the last time you checked in on your operating beliefs?
If our thinking is what eventually drives the outcomes we experience, and our thinking is a result of our beliefs, it seems to me that we need to have a really good look at what we actually believe! The easiest way to do this is to reverse the process I described above and ask some hard questions.
Grab a pen and paper and think of a frustrating outcome or result you experienced recently. Now, write it down, and work your way from the outcome back to the belief by following these steps:
- Outcome = Name the outcome.
- Actions = What actions led to this outcome? List the actions.
- Feelings = What feelings led me to act this way? List your feelings. Be honest with yourself! (For example -Jealousy? Fear of losing something or someone? Did you feel inferior or left out?)
- Thought = What thought led you to feel this way? (For example – If you felt left out, where did that come from? Maybe the thought you have is that “people never include me”)
- Belief = What belief led me to this thought? (Using our previous example – Perhaps somewhere along the line you adopted the belief that “I should be included in everything”) How does this belief serve me? Is this belief realistic? Does it help me move toward my goals? Does it help bring out the best in me so that I can live my optimal life?
This is amazing news isn’t it?! We can direct our thinking to lead us toward optimal outcomes by intentionally cultivating a positive set of operating beliefs! Beliefs that serve us well and help us live the life we were meant to live, one thought at a time.
Love and Blessings,