Sunday, November 18, 2012

I Think I Can . . . And Do!

One of the things I do NOT like to hear my children say is, "Mommy - I CA-AN'T!!!" (Insert whiny-voice-you-know-all-too-well here).

To counter that (and get rid of the whine), I started to cut them off as soon as/just after they said it and say, "Uh-uh. No cant's! Say, 'I think I can, I think I can, I think I can' . . . and DO!"

The other day, and on a few other occasions, I heard my 4-year-old trying something new and saying softly under her breath, "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can . . . and DO!" over and over again.  There was probably some soft singing mixed in there as well -- she's cute like that!

It really hit me how powerful our thoughts are!  How powerful the voices in your head that teach you something over and over again.  I have seen the sign all over Pinterest that your voice becomes the voice in your children's heads, so you must watch what you are telling them.  It reminds me of a song in the musical Into the Woods: "Careful the things you say, children will listen!"
I have always loved this saying:
“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

Our thoughts are shaped by so many things - what we read, what we hear, what we listen to, who we surround ourselves with, what we say, what others say.

Control your mind . . . control your future!

Teach your children empowering thoughts!  Teach them to say, "I can! I do! I am! I will!"  Teach them to say, "I am strong! I am beautiful! I am smart! I am talented! I am fun!" and other things that affirm all they are instead of what they are not!

How will you do that?

You'll start with YOU!  You'll start by weeding your garden of all the negative, degrading, self-doubting, self-depricating thoughts that may exist in your head.  You'll start by turning, 'I can't!' into 'I think I can . . . and DO!'  You'll start by weeding your garden of any weeds that are already planted there, no matter how deep the roots.
  1. Get a notebook or a piece of paper to carry around with you/have near you for a few days to a few weeks.  
  2. Pay attention to your thoughts.  
  3. Every time a negative thought enters your head, write it down on that paper/in that notebook.  Then write down anything associated with it - anything that led up to it, any negative memory surrounding it. How you reacted to it/projected it.
  4. After a week or two of doing this - write yourself a letter of all the negatives you need to remove from your life.  Tell yourself that they have no power over you any more, that you refuse to listen to them anymore.  Tell yourself why they were there to begin with and that you are ready to be done with them.  One of my professors would call this the "Blood Essay" because it allows you to bleed out all the negative on paper - and often times it allows you to look pain square in the face and not run from it.
  5. Once you have written yourself a letter, share it with someone you love/trust!  It's so important to validate - to yourself and someone important to you/trustworthy - that you have had these thoughts and feelings, that they have been very real to you in your life.  BUT that you are also DONE with them!  Choose someone constant, someone you know will never use it against you or even try to give you advice about/talk you out of feeling it.  Just someone who will let you share your emotional vomit for a minute and be done with it forever!
  6. After you've validated, BURN it!  Burn that letter!  Or tear it up into a million pieces and flush it down the toilet.  Whatever it takes to permanently get rid of it as a symbol of your readiness to move forward from it.
  7. Start to dream up and re-think all the wonderful things that are going to replace those thoughts in your life!


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