A frequent “exercise”, I embarrassingly have to confess to doing, is “jumping” to conclusions.
It’s a bad habit and as we know, bad habits are difficult to change.
Come on, confess…… I know I’m not alone. How often have you tried, prosecuted and hung a friend, an acquaintance or even yourself, based on your mind talk? It goes something like this …
He / she is cross with me because …?
I am sure it won’t happen because…?
I am a complete failure because I …?
We become convinced our interpretation of the “whole story” is “true”. We decide, based o our perception without all the facts that the version we have in our head is the TRUTH. News flash, that “Truth” we make so real, is often FALSE or a “DON’T KNOW”.
Until we verify our assumption with the other party or revisit the scenario with the benefit of hindsight, our mind talk remains untrue or a “don’t know”. When we make a future event in our mind, into a fact, it’s most likely a DON’T KNOW or it’s FALSE. For example, a blanket statement like “I’m a failure” is not who you are. It may mean you’ve failed at some things but it doesn’t mean you are a complete failure at everything. Here’s another example… “I’ll never...” or “I can’t…” Actually, anything in the future is generally a “DON’T KNOW”. We don’t have a crystal ball, so how can we predict 100% accurately, the future.
Our minds often see situations or events as true, when in fact they could be false or, if in the future, they are unknown and therefore can’t be categorically stated as definitely true or false.
Checking one’s mind-talk for whether something we tell ourselves is True, False or a Don’t know is a wonderful way to stay real and in the present and avoid catastrophising. It keeps one grounded and gives one a clearer perspective. Try this simple exercise, it’s helped me to gain perspective and not take off on a fantasy flight. Ask yourself when your mind is chattering away, making assumptions, catastrophising or predicting – is the statement I’m telling myself…
You would be amazed how often we tell ourselves a lie.
Here’s some valuable advice. What is always true is how you feel. Your mind can make things up, but your heart tells you your true feelings. i.e. I feel; love, embarrassed, sad, mad or bad.
Another useful piece of advice to keep in your emotional skills box is one from Steven Covey’s book, The 7 habits of highly effective people. “Seek to understand before being understood” Again, an example of how we make things true before hearing the other side of the story. Often when we get the missing piece of the puzzle i.e. the other person's version of the event, we have an “aha” moment. Something like, “okay, I now understand their perspective better”, which very often changes one’s own perspective.
To remind you to seek a balanced perspective we are offering our beautiful sterling silver Balance Bar on a silver chain at a 15% discount for the month of April. The necklace usually costs R430 but will cost R365.50.
With love and gratitude.