It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be…

Uncategorized Feb 25, 2020

Said my daughter during a recent driving lesson.

She’s learning to drive and is full of sass and commentary at the dinner table.

Not so when she’s in control of a car after only 10 hours experience.

Perhaps she’s lost a little confidence after I pushed her too far on an early occasion. Predictable for those of you that know me!

Despite her being capable and being able to drive perhaps the early experience with me pushed her too far into the anxiety zone. My bad!

Anyway, our current practice is to pick her up after school or work and take a few laps of the local car park. Easy loop, no traffic, plenty of space, nothing behind her etc.

On this occasion she reluctantly agreed to drive home from work – local roads, 7pm, still light, dry, minimal traffic etc.

It took her ages to pull out of the side road.

10 mins in having regained her confidence she said ‘It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be…”

Her confidence had been restored by driving.

What had been diluting her confidence was her thoughts about driving.

That got me thinking.

The fear wasn’t the driving but the thought of the driving. Her natural sense of protection had her imaginative thoughts race around her head and create images and scenarios that were negative therefore to be avoided and thereby preventing her from sitting in the driver’s seat.

I wonder how often we are affected by that…creating thoughts that we think are real and basing our behavior or subsequent actions on them. I’d bet you’ve said many times ‘It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be…”

Now there’s a place for scenario planning in your head. Apparently, adrenalin seekers mentally prepare the worst-case scenarios and work out their response should it happen…but still take action.

However, I wonder if that natural fight/flight/freeze thinking prevents most of us from acting?

It would seem only on rare occasions that reality is ever as good or bad as we thought it would be.

Has it ever been as bad as you thought it would be?

I wonder how much of our thinking gets in the way?

 Here’s 3 quick tips.

  1. Scenario plan like an adrenalin seeker. Play out the possible scenarios in your head and watch yourself handle them as best as possible. Fully immerse yourself in the worst that could happen and observe how well you handle it. If you do think, think best case. If you believe your thoughts create reality, then why not make them the best they can be. Imagine the best possible scenario. You should never lose inside your head. Doesn’t mean you won’t lose in reality but your thought preparation will put you in a better state to handle the reality that shows up.
  2. Become the observer of your own thoughts. Imagine your thoughts are passing by on some sort of conveyor belt and you can choose which ones to pick up or not. Separate yourself from your thoughts. After all, you’re more than your thoughts. Avoid trying to control your thoughts. The easiest strategy is to let the good one’s roll, let the bad one’s fold.
  3. Be your own cheerleader. We all talk to ourselves. Some of you will have paused and asked yourself that very question “do I, yes it sounds like I do” 😊 If that’s the case talk to yourself in the most resourceful way. Apparently, our brain can’t tell the difference between what’s real and imaginarySome research suggests that vividly imaging something creates the same neurology as if you’d actually done it. If you did this would it do any harm? Probably not, so make your thoughts as vivid and resourceful as possible. Research also suggests you’ve got this.

Your beliefs become your thoughts; Your thoughts become your words; Your words become your actions; Your actions become your habits; Your habits become your values; Your values become your destiny Gandhi


Bounce forward with a free toolkit here.

 

#21whispers #wednesdaywhispers #bestpossibleme #lifelessons #powerofhabits

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