Thursday, December 21, 2017

Don't Believe Everything You Tell Yourself

(This blog was originally posted on December 12, 2016)

Photo by Rick Hustead

Recently, I addressed our human tendency to believe too much in terms of what we see/hear in social media (Think It All Through). Today, I will tackle the most powerful source of influence on our beliefs and behavior: our own mind.
The subconscious mental script that dictates most of our activities started to be written long before we became aware of—let alone noticed—when we act a particular way or why we do what we do. The more we reinforce (repeat) those beliefs and behaviors, and the more we are rewarded socially or emotionally for them, the stronger they will become. However, that doesn’t mean they are true or right.
For example, if you generally received praise for your efforts and encouragement to solve a problem or resolve a conflict, and reassurance and emotional support to overcome a disappointment, you are likely to repeat these actions in similar situations. Conversely, if your efforts to succeed were met with derision and discouragement to undermine your current and prospective future success, you are more likely to internalize and believe these negative messages.
It doesn’t have to be this way. To paraphrase a beloved Native American parable, everyone has a “good” wolf and a “bad” wolf inside that is constantly fighting for control. The good wolf is confident and self-assured; it wants to do the right thing and do right by others. Conversely, the bad wolf lacks that self-confidence; in fact, it is insecure and self-loathing. It has no respect for others or itself, and would just as soon cause pain and discomfort than share joy and opportunity. Ultimately, the winner of this fight will be the one you feed.
In my blog titled It’s Just a Thought, I explained the benefits of dismissing outright all of those negative messages that you do not want or need to incorporate in your current mental script. This is essentially controlling what you think and the ideas you allow yourself to entertain. Instead, practice imagining or visualizing what you/it would look like to experience that success you are working so hard to achieve. What kinds of words do you want and need to hear to actualize this positive outcome, and practice saying and thinking them until they replace that negative chatter. Believe that this positive outcome is possible because you realized the old way of behaving not only doesn’t work for you anymore, but it has triggered actions and beliefs that can only help you succeed.

Sara R. Fogan, C.Ht. is a certified hypnotherapist based in Southern California. She graduated with honors from the Hypnosis Motivation Institute in 2005. For more information about Calminsense Hypnotherapy® and to set up an appointment, please visit
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