by Rick Liva, ND
Read this at least 3 times on different occasions. Make notes and choose where you want to place your efforts as you use this information to improve your mental and physical health, wellbeing and contentment.
1. What Do You Want?
What specifically do you want? In what area of your life?
Write your wants, desires or goals. Written wants that are clearly defined have a much greater possibility of being accomplished than vague thoughts swimming around in your head. Be specific and always frame them from the positive vs. the negative. Example: I don’t want to be fat vs. I want to weigh 150lbs and here is what I have to do to get there. Your subconscious mind works to achieve positively framed items but not negatives.
How are you going to get what you want?
How will you deal with getting off track, or being stalled? How will you deal with set backs, minor or major failures?
How do you get back on track when you have a set back or failure?
2. MIND & THOUGHT MANAGEMENT
Most people never learn to manage their self talk and thoughts. In fact, they let their self talk run undirected from moment to moment all day long every day. This can produce stress, tension, worry and physical problems. Learning and using the following steps will help you relax, decrease worry, stress and tension by changing your mind, letting go and redirecting negative thoughts. This is a skill. The more you practice it, the better you will get at it and the easier it will be. Have fun with it. Be light and not too serious. It’ will come to you in time.
Step #1. When a negative or unpleasant thought enters your mind notice it and catch yourself being there. Unless you learn to do this part, you can’t move to the next level.
Step #2. Once you notice you are thinking negative or unpleasant thoughts, ask yourself if you want to continue to let your mind go there. In other words, choose where to put your mind’s thoughts. Your choice is whether to continue to think negative/unpleasant thoughts or redirect your mind to other beneficial thoughts or neutral ground. If necessary, ask yourself a series of questions that may illustrate the futility of continuing with a negative/unpleasant thought pattern.
Step #3. You can redirect your mind’s thoughts to many areas. It all starts with noticing first, then letting go of the negative/unpleasant thought, followed by placing your mind in another place (also called redirecting). The following are a few examples of redirecting your mind’s thoughts:
Step #4. This whole process is supported greatly by learning how to meditate and practicing meditation on a daily basis for 20 minutes.
3. Commit To Change and Let Go
Altering what you think is not easy, but possible. The information written below is a life tool. Like any other tool, it won’t produce any result unless it is picked up and used. The more you use a tool, the more productive you are, and the easier it is. Use this tool with the goal of producing tranquility, peace of mind and a relaxed mental and physical state.
The first step starts with choosing to commit and then maintaining an unwavering commitment to alter something. Without a diehard commitment to alter something and produce an outcome, it will not come to pass.
You must decide. Resolve. Be determined. Choose. Make up your mind. Elect. or Opt to do the following. Commit to change, forgive. let go of, or transform a thought pattern. The thought pattern may have resulted from life events, how you’ve learned to think about yourself, or other people or a particular situation.
The second step is to constantly be aware and alert, to notice, observe, and note your thoughts through out the day. There is a big difference in noticing yourself in a thought pattern vs. automatically having the thought pattern run and you’re stuck in it.
The third step is to choose to redirect the thought pattern once you have developed your heightened awareness of it running. Usually people want to alter thought patterns because they are suffering. You have a choice to change, forgive. let go, or transform a thought pattern. The choice is simple. You may continue suffering at the hand of the established pattern, or you may alter the pattern by mastering the process I am outlining. Mastery is not simple. The option of choosing which way to proceed is.
The fourth step is to constantly (several or more times a day) remind yourself of the choice and commitment you have made. You will challenge your own choice and commitment daily, if not several times a day. When you notice that happening, do your best to relax and remind yourself that you plan to stay the course and alter what you have set out to do (follow Mind and Thought Management Handout suggestions). Redirect your mind to another place more suitable.
This technique works. It takes a lot of practice for it to produce results. It is no different than learning a musical instrument. To play an instrument well, a good deal of daily practice is required.
I suggest you read this and think about it for a day or two. Then read it again and think about it for a day or two and do the same for a third time. Begin to practice it. If you have difficulty, thoughts you need to discuss or questions, please make an appointment to see me so we can review them in detail.
Dr. Rick Liva, RPh, ND, is a Naturopathic Physician and the Managing Director at the Connecticut Center for Health, as well as the Chief Medical Officer and Director of Quality at Vital Nutrients in Middletown, CT.