Yesterday I spoke at the Chamber of Commerce, about how to ‘Lead out of a Crisis’, one of the mindsets I spoke about was focusing on what you want, rather than worrying about what you don't want.
It sounds easy right?
Yet, the fact is that we have around 64,800 thoughts a day and it is estimated that on average 80% of those are negative. This means that most of the time we are focusing on what we don’t want, this has a huge impact on the reality that shows up in our life.
Please know this is not about faking it till you make it, or just thinking positively, this is a simple tool that communicates with your brain to allow it to focus on what you want your future to be like.
When a person runs anxiety they created a movie, they see if through their own eyes and hear a soundtrack, plus an internal dialogue (which is generally there own voice) and this then drives the feeling of anxiety, you see what is interesting is the brain doesn’t know what is imagined or what is real, it always feels real on the body.
Let me give you an example of this, just play along with me.
I’m fortunate enough to spend 3 or 4 months of every year in beautiful Portugal. As you’d expect, we get plenty of wonderful sunny days, and I like to take my road bike out early in the mornings and cycle through the lovely countryside before the temperature climbs too high.
This often takes me through the lemon groves, where at the right time of year, the aroma from all those lemons ripening on the trees is just amazing. And in this exercise, we’re going to be imagining one of those lemons.
So, wherever you happen to be, I want you to imagine that you’ve got a perfect lemon right there in front of you.
Picture it there, the perfect colour, the perfect shape. You know that it’s the perfect lemon. Enjoy knowing that this is your perfect lemon, with its perfectly formed skin, plump with juice and reminiscent of the sun-soaked groves it grew in.
Imagine taking a knife, and cleanly cutting that perfect lemon in half, recognising that distinctive swishing sound of the knife slicing through the stiff peel and the soft, juice filled centre of the fruit.
Imagine what that smells like, and what it might taste like if a little of that lemony cloud just happens to touch your tongue.
Look at the cut lemon halves and notice how some of the segments have been broken open. One of the segments is still absolutely full of rich lemon juice. And now, I’d like you to cut off a slice of that lemon. A mouth-sized slice, the kind you might pop in a cool drink.
Look at that slice closely, noticing all the little sacks and segments bursting with juice just waiting to be released. And imagine you’re going to pop that slice of lemon into your mouth, biting down and releasing all that juice over your tongue.
Now I’d like you to take a moment to check around the inside of your mouth with your tongue. You’ll almost certainly notice that there’s extra saliva.
I know that even sitting here writing this article, my own mouth is watering in response to the image created in my mind. But why should that be? We know there’s no lemon.
You imagined what it looked like; you imagined what it smelled like; you imagined what it tasted like. The interesting thing is that to your body, that lemon was real. To your body, that lemon slice was about to come into your mouth, and your mouth prepared for it with extra saliva just as it would have for the real thing.
So our mind can have unwitting power over our automatic functions, simply because of what and how we think. So it’s time to take control.
Create a movie of what you do want, see it, hear it, what will your internal dialogue be? Then you will feel it, your future how you want it to be. This is powerful and very empowering.