Originally posted 3/28/14 this piece deserves another look. Please enjoy!
Last week a friend told me about the unusual circumstance she experienced in traffic. A red light for a left turn appeared not to function– she took matters into her own hands to get where she was going. About a minute later, she got very worried and upset about her action. She feared a traffic ticket and she berated herself for poor judgment and taking risks.
She was heading to a class involving movements to heighten body awareness and to relieve tension. There she followed instructions, making small movements in a certain way and noticing the changes in her body. Upset, she reached for the attention to focus on the class. The adrenaline of self reproach ran; she did her best to participate.
After about half hour, an image popped into her mind, as she looked for some kind of relief inside. What if she had a supporting person to pay for any ticket she might acquire? The thought of having “back up” felt soothing. Continuing, she recalled that she actually had an account of money from her deceased mother rarely used. Actually, she could tap into that pot for this purpose. She got more relief and more calm from this thought.
What story do we tell ourselves? This woman found a way to see her situation so that she felt support and that brought relief. She liked to play the game where she observed the positive benefits that have come forth from situations she did not want. Connect the dots to show herself the happy endings from events in her life she would not have chosen. (BTW: though she had feared getting a ticket, she was not issued one. )
Around 2000 I parted ways with a long term romantic partner. At the time I felt much sadness and heartache. Looking back I now see how much good has flowed to me since breaking up. With the unanticipated freedom I have been led to create a dynamic new life with much growth, creative expression and inspiration. What if every unwanted event was the opening for lots of new experiences we desire?
What if we..
- notice how we feel
- observe what we are saying to ourselves
- play with talking to ourselves in our minds in ways that lift our spirits
Do you have examples of times when you have re-framed what you were saying to yourself to positive advantage? I would love to hear about them at firstname.lastname@example.org.