Saturday, October 23, 2010
By Charles G Boyer
DON'T think about the Statue of Liberty!
Now tell me - what was the first image that popped into your head? My guess is that you pictured the Statue of Liberty in your mind's eye, even though the first word you read was "don't."
Our minds have a peculiar way of filtering out what information we receive, and in this case, the suggestion to think about an image of the Statue of Liberty was a lot stronger than the "don't" message.
Just like a kid. What happens when Mom yells out, "Don't slam the door!" What do you think the kid hears? The "don't" doesn't seem to register as much as "slam the door!" - and you can guess the outcome, if you haven't already experienced it firsthand.
What about this one: Don't forget to take out the trash! What is left when you filter out the don't? Of course - forget to take out the trash. Or: Don't be late. And what's left? Be late!
Emphasizing what not to do seems to be a widespread practice. How many times does a teacher, parent, or supervisor say, "Don't do that," and then wonder why their message seems to fall on deaf ears.
There is something strange going on here - and it's that negatives don't really work as well as positives. Did you notice the trap I just walked into? "Negatives don't work." It's really a double negative, and the truth is that negatives do work. They work against us, and they reinforce the negative. Our minds really do internalize the signals sent by "don't, not, no," especially when the negative is directed back to us. When a child repeatedly hears, "You can't do that," the child begins to believe he/she is not capable of doing whatever "that" is. When we tell ourselves that we can't do something, we begin to believe that is true, that we are incapable of that accomplishment.
How can you turn the negative into a positive? Turn it around: What are you FOR? What DO you like? What DO you most want to happen? What if you tell yourself that you can do something? Stated very simply, the Law of Attraction teaches us that we tend to attract what we focus on. If you want to attract positive energy, you must think positive thoughts and practice positive actions and self-talk.
Why spend time and energy describing what you don't want or don't have? Many of us are pretty good at it. What that does is attract to you what you don't want. Turn that negative into a positive and say what you do want. Take note of the difference you feel in your energy, in your attitude, and in the results you get. It takes time and practice, but the Law of Attraction does work!
Turn the negative into a positive, and notice the difference: · "Don't slam the door!" can become "Please close the door quietly."
· "Don't slouch" can become "Sit up straight."
· "I can't do that, because..." can become "I can do that, and I will."
Do you see the difference in print? Do you feel a difference when you read the positive statement out loud?
Here's something you can practice on your own with a sheet of paper:
· Write down one negative statement, and then ask yourself how you can turn that negative into a positive statement.
· Re-write the negative statement as a positive one. · Then, focus your attention only on the positive statement.
· As you read the positive statement - out loud - what differences do you notice in your energy, in your attitude, in your outlook?
· Say - out loud - your positive statement three times a day for three weeks and notice any differences you feel. Yes, it does take that long to get a new, positive habit started.