#117 | How to change your thinking
Follow this six step process to change unhelpful thinking. Why change thinking? It influences everything we feel and do.
This episode is a little different – telling the story – while drawing you an info-graphic.
This blog expands on the concepts covered in the Facebook Live.
Why change your thinking?
Thinking influences everything we feel and everything we do and ultimately embeds our core belief in ourselves.
When you want to change things – to do stuff differently long term – then the best place to start is with your thinking.
Before we move into the steps, lets go through some common core belief statements that we tell ourselves, that quite frankly – just drag us down!
What is a core belief?
Core beliefs are rules that we have set up for ourselves, the people around us and the environment we live in.
It is how you perceive the world around you. Fortunately they are relatively easy to identify, because it starts with an ‘I’.
I am unlovable
I am a failure
I procrastinate too much
I am not good enough
When you identify your core belief, you are noticing your thinking. Which is a fantastic step forward in changing the way you think.
Step #01 Pause
Pause when you notice yourself ‘ruminating’ on a unhelpful thought, stop in the moment.
Reflect on where you are at in that point in time.
Step #02 Identify the trigger
Often there is a trigger that sends you down the rumination spiral. The trigger may be a certain sound, smell, sight. It may be environmental – such as the people you are hanging with at that point in time.
Step #03 Notice your thinking
Quieten your mind to notice everything that you are thinking. Keep asking yourself ‘why am I thinking this’. Drilling down into your thought.
Brainstream! This technique is so easy, and one of my favourites. It’s like brainstorming – except rather than gathering your thoughts and ideas on a topic – you are noticing your thoughts.
Write everything that comes to mind down. Without judgement. Be curious about what is being revealed.
This technique works best if you set yourself a time limit for your brainstreaming activity. Push yourself to keep thinking and writing for the 5, 10 or 15 minutes that you have set.
Step #04 Listen to the emotion
Firstly, label the emotions. State how you are feeling. Don’t hold back. Then give yourself a score out of 5. A rating of 5 means the strongest, unhelpful emotion.
Step #05 Identify alternative ways of thinking
Now, write down all the alternative, more helpful ways of thinking. Try using the different perspectives that I shared in Episode 115.
Step #06 Re-rate the emotion
Once you have identified different ways of thinking, check in to see if that has helped lessen the charge in the emotion you are experiencing.
If non of this helped, and you have been ruminating on this unhelpful thought for a while, consider seeking some professional help or at least talking about it with someone you trust.
To make sustainable change, and do stuff differently long term, you need to change the way you think, because:
Thinking influences everything we feel, everything we do and ultimately embeds our core belief in ourselves.
There are 6 steps to help changing your thinking when you find yourself ruminating on an unhelpful thought.
2. Identify the trigger
3. Notice your thinking
4. Listen to the emotion
5. Identify alternative ways of thinking
6. Re-rate the emotion
Seek help if this has gone on too long!