Think about someone who is in a car accident. They were driving along a country road. Lost concentration, veered off the road, clipped a barrier, spun around a little. They were freaked out, filled with adrenalin, but not hurt.
So, they could place two meanings on it. One: that they are a terrible driver, that it was a warning sign they are doomed, that they shouldn’t be on the road anymore. That this could mean they have a bad year ahead.
The other meaning could be that it was a welcome wake up call to pay more attention behind the wheel, that they’ll learn from their lucky escape. Then they decide to put their energies into thinking about something else and get on with life.
Same event. Different meaning.
I encourage you to use that in your everyday life. I have a friend who calls it ‘the prism of positivity’ and thinks of events like a kaleidoscope, where you have the power to turn the cylinder and make the same beads fall into different patterns. You decide what you’re seeing.
Later today, you might have a strong conversation with someone. Step outside and see grey skies. You could be in traffic. It’s totally up to you whether you see the talk as honest and productive feedback or an attack, whether you see the grey skies as a drainer or giving the world the rain it needs, whether you see the traffic as holding you up or giving you some much needed space to think.
Start to tell yourself the stories you want to hear.
You are in control of the stories you tell yourself. When we have this level of awareness, personal responsibility becomes so much easier and we get to tell ourselves the stories that support and champion us to be our best.
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