It is our thoughts that create our reality, shape and texture our day-to-day experiences, and influence the direction and quality of our futures. Usually our high and low toned emotions are interconnected to what we are thinking. It is our thoughts that precede what we do and how we to do it or perhaps not do it. Being aware of our thoughts and the effect they have on our lives, our work and our world, is an essential principle for living successfully.
As human beings we are uniquely endowed with a very powerful ability…FREE-WILL… which is our inherent capacity to think and chose freely above and beyond external influence or force. Simply stated, we can voluntarily chose or decide what or how to think about ourselves, others, things and experiences. It is our innate free-will which upholds the universal claim that we are ultimately responsible for what we experience.
It is our freedom to chose our thoughts and perspective (and it is not people, situations or circumstances) that ultimately empowers us to move forward, to thrive and grow or to sabotage the quality of our lives, our effectiveness at work and our leadership.
The following is a short yet sure fire list of ‘How To Stay Stuck, Miserable and Disempowered’ and it is a portrayal of ‘not using’ or ‘misusing’ our free-will.
- Criticize. Be critical of yourself throughout the day, every day, from the moment you open your eyes in the morning to when you fall asleep. Focus on your body, face and overall appearance as well as what you are thinking or not thinking, what you are feeling or not feeling, what you have said or not said, what you have done or not done … Also criticize others in like fashion.
- Blame. For everything that is wrong or not working in your life, blame absolutely everyone starting with your parents or caregivers.
- Resent. Forgive no one especially your family. Hold on to your resentments and incessantly think of all the unpleasant experiences you have had and are having since childhood.
- Guilt. Feel guilty all the time about everything and everyone. Remember to feel guilty about situations and events that you have/had no control over…which is most things.
- Shame. By incessantly telling yourself and sharing with others “I should have… I could have… I would have…” you can anchor your sense of self in the mire of shame.
- Complain. Complain all the time to whoever will listen to you such as your family, friends, colleagues, strangers…
- Judge. Negatively judge everyone, everything and situations. Consistently share your negative judgments with family, friends and colleagues.
- Avoidance. Avoid your life today by tumbling back and forth on your timeline–reliving days gone by and daydreaming about your future.
- Self-pity. Feel sorry for yourself, after all you are the victim in your life and there is nothing that you can do about ‘it’.
- Lie. Intentionally exaggerate, minimize, omit, deny, fabricate… the truth about yourself to yourself and others.
- Gossip. Spread unsavory malicious stories about people you know and about people you don’t know.
- Control. Excessively ‘try’ to control everything and everybody with vigilance.
- Busy! Busy! Busy! Keep hyper-busy so that you can hide from your true self and hide from others.
- Perfectionism. Perfect your perfectionism to the point of self-paralysis.
- Worthlessness. Believe that you are not good enough, you are undeserving of all good things and experiences and that you have little to no value to contribute in your world and the world we all live in.
- Who would I be if I consciously exercised my free-will?
- What would I be doing differently?
- How would my life, work and leadership improve and expand?