Intentional living is one of my core values and favorite topics (in case you hadn’t noticed). I truly believe it is the key to fulfillment and living a life you love. Reaching the vision you have requires focus, setting and reaching goals. Quite simply, that takes intentionality. But there is a component that is even more important that we don’t talk about a lot. Proof of its importance fills up our inboxes and social media feeds in the form of positive quotes, clever memes and inspirational images.
I’m referring to managing our thought life. Nothing can derail our best intentions faster or more efficiently then unchecked, uncontrolled thoughts. Our minds receive input all day, every day from hundreds of sources – people’s words, social media, news, email, radio, podcasts – just to name a few. If we don’t manage, or better yet, limit that input it will steal our focus and/or take us off course. We can be miles down the wrong path before we even realize what happened and it often takes monumental effort to repair the damage and course correct just to get back to where we left off. Time and energy wasted.
Thought patterns turn into habits and habits happen without any conscious effort on our part. We all have these negative thought patterns filtering input and weighing into our decisions. Becoming aware of them and then consistently replacing them with positive and true thoughts will rewire negative thought patterns into productive ones. See Caroline Leaf’s, Switch on Your Brain for more on that.
Take action with one or all of the following Ways To Manage Your Thinking:
- Go on a digital diet: Take an inventory of the digital input you allow into your head via news, podcasts, YouTube and remove anything that is not directly related to your work or current goals
- Do a ‘friend’ fast: Limit your interactions to those people you have to work with or who are in your personal success circle (more about that in next week’s post). These are people who have a positive impact on you and move you toward success.
- Tune in and turn it up: Think about what you’re thinking about. Noticing your thoughts and negative thinking patterns is the first step to correcting. You’ve heard of a food journal? Keep a thought journal for a few days, until you start seeing unproductive patterns. Then implement a plan to rewire your negative thought patterns like it’s your job! (Refer back to Switch on Your Brain)
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