Since ancient times, philosophers, soothsayers, and shamans have been telling us that the thoughts we cultivate and focus on can have a profound effect on the quality and circumstances of our lives. The vast majority of books, recordings, and seminars on positive thinking or personal development emphasize this principle. Many of the major religions also emphasize the power of faith, free will, gratitude, and belief.
Why, then, are so many people plagued by negativity — both in their thoughts and the conditions of their lives?
I only know what I personally experience, read about, reflect on, and observe in others… which actually encompasses quite a bit of information!
Can Positive Thinking Change Your Life? (Spoiler Alert: “Absolutely!”)
The concept of positive thinking is well rooted in spiritual traditions, ancient and contemporary philosophy, physiology, neurology, and just plain common sense. Why, then, do so many of us dismiss and discount the immense power residing within our own brains and spirit?
The answer is simple and can be explained by one of my favorite Albert Einstein quotes:
So what that means, in terms of self determination, is that people tend to be captivated, controlled, and directed by what they see, rather than what they would like to see. The old cliche of “what you see is what you get” is the guiding principle in the minds of most people. The ‘only’ problem with that mindset is that it’s severely limiting and is invariably going to bring you more of what you already have. Sometimes that’s good, other times, not so much! If you’re looking for changes or improvement in the circumstances of your life, then focusing on your external world is not going to help attract things you want. Change always comes from within!
As the ancient Law of Attraction teaches us, what we focus on and repeatedly think about expands, gets reinforced, and translates itself into external conditions — either new conditions or more of the same. By making a conscious effort to program your mind, amplify positive thoughts, and extinguish negative, self-defeating thoughts, you can create new and better circumstances and propel your life in a much more positive direction.
Everyone is the product of their experiences, their environment, and their genetic predisposition. There’s no question that human psychology can be a tangled web — one that can take a lifetime to unravel — sometimes requiring the help of a spiritual guide or mental health professional(s).
There’s no “quick fix” or guaranteed panacea which will transform your life. Upgrading the quality and quantity of your positive thought is the first, second, and third steps to achieving a greater measure of happiness and success. Clarifying your goals, learning to belief in yourself, and cultivating positive thoughts is the starting point to bridging the gap between where you are and where you want to be a year from now.
I will end this blog post with a hackneyed old joke, which never ceases to amuse me:
Question: “How many psychotherapists does it take to change a light bulb?”
Answer: “Only one, but the light bulb has to really want to change!”
I don’t know how well that joke is going to translate into other languages (besides English), but my point is that change and personal development requires a high level of commitment, persistence, and internal fortitude. Without it, the influences of negativity in the world and in your own mind will always prevail.
Thanks for reading my latest blog post on personal development and human potential. I invite you to follow this blog (“Thoughts That Work”) to receive email updates on future posts and upcoming topics.
Have a great day!