Yes, believe in it literally: what you think you become and what you imagine you create.
Whether it is a quote from Gautama Buddha or not, as others say, it is not the point of this article. We are more focused on the depth of these words and the powerful meaning they hold.
In fact, many writers throughout the history emphasized the same idea in their books.
For instance, Napoleon Hill in his 1937 book “Think and grow rich”, said “whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve”.
Joseph Murphy in his 1963 book “The power of your subconscious mind” wrote that “know that belief is a thought in your mind, and what you think you create”.
In our everyday life, we have multiple things we think about from the moment we wake up to that we sleep. There is a kind of inner voice that talk to us continuously mostly with negative thoughts that are repeated over and over in our head like a record.
Following a new research by Dr. Jordan Poppenk in Queen’s University, we have more than 6000 thoughts per day.
Another study shows that 80% of these thoughts are negative and work against our interest. The worst is that they cause 75% of diseases like blood pressure, stomach ulcers, heart attacks and so on.
Meaning that each day we keep thinking about the same things as the day before. Limiting this way, our minds and, thus, ourselves inside boundaries of worries and fear about the future, regrets about the past and we forget living the present moment.
So, from where come this inner self-talk that controls our thoughts? What is the power of thinking? How thinking can impact our lives? And how can we control this inner voice to make our lives better?
The Power of Thinking
As said in many decades by Frank Outlaw “Watch your thoughts, they become words; watch your words, they become actions; watch your actions, they become habits; watch your habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”
In fact, what you think and talk about within you increases and will be reflected back to you as a reality.
Negative programming of the mind hinders individuals from reaching their goals, becoming the best version of themselves and doing what they want.
Therefore, controlling our thoughts is the key in order to take control over our lives. To do that, it is important to be aware of the different sources of these thoughts and how they are instilled in our minds.
Sources of Thoughts:
The first source of these thoughts is parents and family.
Shad Helmstetter, in his known book “What to Say When You Talk to Yourself”, said that the average 18 years old child heard “no” and other negative words like “don’t do this”, “you can’t do it”, more than 148 000 times. Yet, “yes” or other positive words were not said more than 400 times.
This does not mean that our families were bad. However, unintentionally, they programmed us negatively, but with love certainly.
The second source is school. In fact, teachers say occasionally to students and kids some sayings like “ how many times should I explain this so that you understand”, “Don’t you understand?”, “Your brother was better than you”, “you will never amount to anything”, etc.
This negative language affects enormously kids and has long-lasting results on their behaviours.
The third source is friends. Friends influences in a big way each other’s personal preferences, lifestyle and even the way they think about themselves.
Researchers told this “The Michelangelo phenomenon”. Meaning that when you are with a partner or a close friend who sees you, already, in a state you want to attain, your partner affirmation will have a positive impact on your growth towards your ideal self.
The fourth source is Media. Following the latest Total Audience Report, American adults, with more than 18 years old, spend more than 4 hours per day watching TV.
Being every day connected through television, radio or phones, mass media can influence enormously many aspects of our life. Its messages positive or negative reinforce existing beliefs, create new ones and can even shape the way we think.
Then, the last source of thoughts and the most important one is YOU. Yes, you.
Certainly, you have gathered in your unconscious sufficient information from the four sources cited before. Yet, these external thoughts won’t take control over your mind till you allow it to happen.
Meaning that, everything depends on your self-programming. If you accept these thoughts and start talking to yourself with the same way, you will get the results matching with the thoughts you are focusing on.
Therefore, your success or failure and thus, what you will become, is conditioned by what you are programming yourself to think about most.
It is important to note that self-programming is a continuous operation that feeds on your thoughts either you are conscious about them or not. In other words, if you are thinking negatively, consciously or unconsciously you are programming your mind to give you more similar negative thoughts.
That is why, being aware of the power of our mind and thoughts and believing that we normally should have the whole control over them is the first step towards an excellent self-programing.
Thus, it is important to distinct between the three main levels of self-talk and be able to define in which level your inner voice is currently oriented.
Levels of Self-Talk:
In fact, there are three main levels of self-talk.
The first level, let’s call it, the inner terrifying voice. It is the worst level as it can make you in a state of despair, of feeling inefficiency and even creates many hinders that prevent you from reaching your goals.
This kind of self-talk gives you some signals like “I am not enough”, “I am too shy”, “I can’t do this”, “My memory is so weak”, I can’t stop smoking I’ve already tried many times but failed”, “I am not beautiful”, “I can’t speak in public”, etc.
What happens, by repeatedly sending these negative signals to your subconscious, they become an integral part of your strong beliefs, and thus, will have the ability to influence your actions and feelings and those of your environment.
Earl Nightingale, the American writer and radio speaker confirmed this by saying, “Whatever we plant in our subconscious mind and nourish with repetition and emotion will one day become a reality.”
The second level of self-talk is saying the negative word “but”. This level is better than the first as the desire for change is present. However, it is always followed up with the word “but”.
Unfortunately, the word “but” erases all the positive affirmations said before it. For instance, “I want to lose weight but I can’t”, “I want to get up early but I won’t feel good”, etc.
It is, in fact, like if I told you: you are excellent but …. So, what will you think? Will you pay more attention to the fact that I complimented you, or will you be awaiting for the negative words that will follow “but”.
In other words, the word “but” erases everything positive before it. Therefore, the message that the subconscious will capture is that “I can’t”. For the subconscious, behind “but”, there is always fear and flight from making effective decisions.
The third and last level of self-talk is self-acceptance. This level is by far the most powerful. It is a source of power, a sign of self-confidence and proper personal appreciation.
At this level, the inner voice sends signals like “I am unique”, “I am excellent”, “I can realize all my dreams”, “I am beautiful and charismatic”, “I am strong and have a good memory”, etc.
These signals will give you more motivation to reach your goals. After that, you will trust your ability to succeed and believe that you can shape your reality.
You are the Master of your Thoughts
As Peace Pilgrim said, “If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought.”
You should believe in the power of your thoughts and that your current state is only a reflection of how you think.
You, I and Everyone has the power to alter any negative self-programming to a positive one.
Everyone can reach the third level of self-talk we have talked about, for a simple reason, we possess our minds, we can control our thoughts and we can change any thought according to our desire.
In his book The Science of Mind, Ernest Holmes said “The more power one gives to his thought, the more completely he believes that his thought has power, the more power will it have.”
Everyone has the right and ability to think about what he wants. None can direct your thoughts. They are under your whole control.
Guiding self-talk in the right direction is the key to make great things and to turn your life into an experience of success and happiness.
As Wilfred Arlan Peterson said, “To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts, we wish to dominate our lives.”
How to Make your Thoughts your Ally?
First, it is important to know the role of the subconscious and how it works.
As we know, the subconscious is responsible for our entire physical functions like breathing, regulating the body temperature, heart beating, etc. so he is behind everything working repeatedly in a great harmony and without consciously thinking about these processes.
Likewise, in order to facilitate the work of the conscious mind, the subconscious stores any information collected by the conscious mind and everything that happens to you. So, when he detects that a message is repeated many times and for a long period, he programs it as something that should be repeated continuously.
For this reason, only a positive correct self-programming can change this message and any idea well embedded in the subconscious.
Hereafter some rules for a better self-programming of your subconscious mind:
- Use in your message the present tense. If said in the future, the message won’t have an impact on your subconscious.
- Be affirmative and positive. Choose powerful and passionate words that reflect your state.
- Your message should be accompanied by emotions that hold a strong sense of its content. For example, when you say “I am an achiever”, you should feel and believe that you really are.
- Use precise, brief and pointed words to express your message
- You have to repeat the message multiple times for you to fully program it in your subconscious
To make these rules into practice, below a plan to help you shift to a positive and vibrational self-programming.
+ The first step : is to say “cancel and erase” to all negative, destructive thoughts that hinder your progress:
Write in a paper five thoughts that used to have a negative impact on you. For example, “I am not successful”, “Others are better than me in everything”, “I am a boring person”, etc.
Cut out this paper and then, throw it away.
+ The second step : is to install the positive thoughts:
Write five positive personal messages that are pleasant, appealing and powerful for you and always start with “I”.
Write these positive messages in a small notebook that you take with you wherever you go.
Take a deep breath and read the messages one by one until you read them all.
+ The third step : is what we call “creative visualization”. Visualize, imagine yourself in a state of success and fulfilment of your goals:
Start again with the first positive message, take a deep breath, and expel any stress inside your body.
Read this message ten times with a strong feeling. Your words should be emotionally powerful and passionate.
Close your eyes and imagine yourself accomplishing your goals. Have a total faith on the outcome and feel success with your all senses.
Repeat this exercise many times in order to reprogram positively your subconscious mind.