As I was thinking about this topic, I decided to take a look at some inspirational quotes as I frequently do before I sit to write. The first quote I saw when I opened my daily book of quotes was apropos:
Our life is the creation of our mind ~ Buddha
I suppose you might say that I had the thought “Change your mindset and change your life” so the Buddha quote was presented to me in support of my thought. Well, it might seem a bit magical but the concept of “Think it and make it so” is more than mumble jumble. There are numerous scientific studies that prove how what we think creates our experience of life. This is sometimes called mindset and the power you hold in your own hands—in your own mind, that is—will change your life if you set your mind to it. Yes, there are numerous idiomatic expressions that capture how what you think creates what you experience because this isn’t something new. Yet it is often neglected as a powerful technique to create joy in your own life.
Yesterday, my husband, Andy, and I were reading the Sunday NYTimes and as we often tend to do, we shared bits and pieces about what we were reading. Thanksgiving is just days away so the piece in the Sunday Review Section that Andy was reading was, not surprisingly, about being grateful. He described to me that there is research that proves that the more you choose to be grateful, the happier you will feel. Specifically, writing down all that you are grateful for has a profound impact on your happy meter. I keep an acknowledgement journal at my desk to write down all that I am thankful for throughout the day. This includes just about anything and everything that I either accomplished or received or experienced. Acknowledging all that you are grateful for is so easy and so powerful.
Over the years I have ready numerous research studies about the power of acting “as if” to create a change in experience. I’m so delighted that the mainstream press is catching on. The lovely NYTimes article nicely articulated a number of findings about the impact of thinking what you want to experience. One of the simplest methods to bring on the “happy” is by smiling. I love testing the finding that making yourself smile actually lifts your spirits. Try it now! Smile for just 20 seconds and you will feel happy. What a simple technique to use anytime, anywhere!
Choose Your Mindset
The key to using a new mindset to change your life is you must choose to do so. In other words, you need to make a conscious effort to think the positive thoughts that will lead you to a positive outcome. I say positive, because unfortunately, thinking negative thoughts will lead to further negative experience. Yes, that’s also the power of mindset. Now, I am not saying that you need to be Pollyanna and ignore anything that gives you discomfort in life. It is important to process and work through negative experiences. What I am saying is that in any given moment, you are the only one—really—who can take responsibility for how you feel. So choose to be thankful and joyful and so you shall be.
Don’t make choosing gratitude or any other mindset happen only around Thanksgiving. The more you practice thinking what you want to feel and experience, the more you will experience what you want materialize in front of you all the time. I like to have daily reminders, like the book of daily gratitude quotes I mentioned earlier, notes to myself that remind me of everything that I love about life and want more of, books bedside to dip into first thing in the morning and at the end of the day with positive thoughts about being in this world.
Consciously create your positive mindset each day and you will be amply rewarded with positive changes in your life. I am genuinely grateful for all of you, my dear clients and readers. I wish you a joyful thanksgiving!