Thoughts control your mind and your mind controls your life and thus your emotions, beliefs and actions. If your life is not going in the right direction, or you are not achieving that which you want, or should feelings be preventing the experience of happiness or motivation or being capable, your thought patterns are in all likelihood keeping flawed ways of thinking active. And besides that, it masks a vital mental tool – your intuition, which should not be confused with wishful or ego-driven thinking.
Thought patterns may be experienced on a conscious level, so that you experience recurring thoughts that you cannot seem to get rid of, but they most often originate from the subconscious. It can be related to beliefs held subconsciously. Limiting beliefs, resulting in emotional challenges often stem from previous events, experiences, situations or your judgements of those, reinforcing the perception of lack, failure or threat.
The experience of inner peace is a necessity for creating momentum, experiencing joy or making your desires known and real. Inner peace is the secret ingredient discovered by those who have successfully recreated their mental lives in a manner that gives them control over their thoughts.
Limiting beliefs and disruptive emotions are the result of your personal thought system. Implanting new thought patterns whereby you see yourself as capable and good, will allow you to systematically peel away these limiting layers and change your experiences on a mental and emotional level. Not instantaneously, but bit by bit.
Creating New Thought Patterns or Habits
In order to achieve control over these type of thoughts, you would need to establish new thought habits. You need to take control of your thoughts on a conscious level which places demands on the same energy you have available for other functions. For this reason it is difficult (but not impossible) to form new thought patterns that support a more positive you through sheer willpower. Eventually the new way of thinking will become habitual, should you put enough effort and energy into ensuring that a stable new pattern is formed. In this way you can start thinking, acting and feeling the way you want.
Rebuilding your mental map with new, more effective thought patterns may actually be quite difficult. Why? You may be unaware of the underlying motivations or drivers that continuously trip you up. The reasons for self-sabotage is seldom obvious but understanding why you engage in it is important.
Part of the work of these unconscious drivers is to “protect” us from the so-called threatening knowledge, so that we engage in ego-driven thought patterns.The ego, as protector, may not allow you to see past what is an irrational defense and what is real.
The protection of the ego comes at a steep price – it prevents us from seeing past our fear driven responses or patterns. It could result in repeating the same mistake over and over again, as the inner driver remains safely in place, while the “rationale” behind it remains hidden. In this way the destructive thought pattern gets strengthened.
There are different techniques available to access these unconscious drivers or ego driven patterns, such as Hypnosis and other Neuro Linguistic Programming tools (for example, Time Line Therapy, Creative Visualisation, etc.). The insights you gain in this way, together with the elimination of destructive thought patterns, can allow you to rebuild your mental maps. This will also enable you to see changes happening on other levels, feeling more comfortable in your own skin, learning to like who you are, getting in touch with your own intuitive voice and thus, allowing you to feel and act according to your deeper values, insights and wisdom.
From a practical perspective, here are some ideas related to developing a more vibrant and flexible mental life, that can permit you to create a transformation in how you view yourself, your world, experiences, relationships, as well as to see possibilities in challenges or problems:
Create more energy: Once you have taken a conscious decision to complete something, do so. Incomplete tasks or actions deplete energy on a subconscious level, since an expectation has been created at that level.
Eliminate damaging self-labelling: The same process can apply when label yourself as lazy, incapable or uncommitted. Energy depletion goes hand in hand with disappointment. Therefore, completing things will help you to eliminate destructive self-perceptions.
Make time to relax: Using creative visualisation or meditation are powerful ways to enter a deep state of relaxation. It is not how long you meditate that is important, but the quality of the experience. There are many benefits – from reducing mental stress to generating self-insight, improving concentration and thus performance while also stimulating creative insights to come to the surface.
Ask more questions: Develop a habit of being curious by asking questions rather than desperately looking for escape routes. A variety of questions when in a sticky situation or having to solve a problem open up new channels that can be explored. Not all of them may be viable, but the number of options or possible solutions can grow exponentially. Asking why and expecting an answer is unrealistic. Asking what, when, where, how and who questions give better results.
Experiment: Quiet the fearful voice and experiment with new ways of perceiving and doing things. Like a little child, ask yourself – what would happen if …?
Learn to enjoy challenging your own mind and moreover, delight in expanding your mental world!