Imagine you’re standing in front of a Jukebox, looking at the selection of records; there are only 2 available for selection. One of them is that annoying grating song that sets your nerves on edge and you can’t seem to get it out of your head once you hear it; the other is an amazing anthem that really resonates with you, lifts your spirits and by the chorus has you on your feet belting it out feeling energised and empowered!
Which record would you choose?
Thoughts are like records that we chose to play. Sometimes our mental jukebox is so rapid that we don’t realise we’ve made the selection before it starts playing. Before we know it we have that same old thought spinning around and around “how could he do that to me?”, “why am I such a loser?” “Why can’t I quit smoking?”, “why can’t I lose weight?”, “why don’t people like me?”
These thoughts play around in our heads, bringing us down, making us feel anxious, depressed and defeated.
They occupy our minds so much that we forget something very important…… We can change the record!!
We can choose not to play the thoughts that make us feel terrible and behave either badly towards others, or completely withdrawn. We are not our thoughts and we can change our thinking.
It may seem righteous to stick with the thoughts about how other people have done us wrong or how sad or turbulent our childhoods were or how we didn’t get that job, or have that dream wedding; but you know what? being self-righteous doesn’t make for a happy life. This faulty thinking leads us towards negative behaviours, broken relationships and wasted time. Going over and over a perceived wrong or unhappy event in your mind doesn’t affect anyone but you. If it relates to something someone has done, the perpetrator is unaffected and getting on with their life! It’s only you that are continuing to carry the weight of their wrongdoing.
I’m not talking about forgetting the wrongs, or opening the door for the people to repeat the same treatment. You live, you LEARN and you move on. As the saying goes when people show you who they are, believe them! Don’t make excuses, don’t expect better of them next time, accept them for who they’ve shown you they are and adjust your expectations accordingly. Do not let them or their actions have free rent in your head. It’s, of course, normal to be upset for a period when someone has wronged us or we’ve had a disappointment or sad event, however if we ruminate on it that is we just keep replaying it over and over in circles, we’re getting into depression mode and the only person that harms is us. Some things will take longer to get over than others and there is no set time for anyone to recover from a disappointing, hurtful or tragic life event, however there is a point and you will recognise this within yourself, where you are just going around and around and around.
At this point, in the words of that (kind of annoying) song LET IT GO! Change your thoughts, pick from the playlist of thoughts that will help you construct the life you want. Instead of humming flatly to the tune of “why me”, sing “what can I do to make this better” and sing it WAY OUT LOUD!
If you’ve reached the ruminating stage, remember how you feel is a result of the thoughts you give airplay to, how you behave is due to the feelings you’ve unleashed with the toxic thoughts, it’s a cycle. If you find you are feeling stuck in that cycle and need help getting off, and a lot of people do need help with this, don’t be afraid to seek help.
As a Hypnotherapist and Counsellor I can offer help in this area, there are many professionals that can. If talking to friends, or trying to work it out for yourself hasn’t worked to date, you’re not alone, this is not unusual at all in fact. Unfortunately a lot of us were not taught very well how to manage difficult thoughts and emotions, because we were raised by parents that weren’t taught very well by their parents, often we were simply taught to stifle our emotions and the concept that our thoughts are not us was never introduced at all.
It’s true though, our thoughts are not us and we are not our thoughts. The proof of this is in the fact that we can think about or thoughts, this shows that we are somehow greater than the thinking process and that with the right help we can more actively direct it. The practice of mindfulness teaches us a lot about how we can slow down and examines our thoughts, Hypnotherapy is another level of this type of examination, but in the case of hypnotherapy there is some client driven re-framing of thoughts also so the results can be achieved in a shorter time period.
I hope this has been food for thought and remember only feed the thoughts that are going to make your life more fulfilling.
Georgina Mitchell was born in Ireland, moving to Australia in 1989. Georgina spent many years working in senior management in the Corporate world, before leaving to pursue her passion to become a Therapist.
Melbourne Hypnotherapy Blog
Please note as with all therapies, Results for Therapies delivered by Hypfocus may vary from person to person