You are what you think you are!

by Blog Director: Cristina Coreas

The Placebo Effect

How powerful can our mind really be?  I remember riding to work one day and listening to the radio about people in a study group who were told they were going to be given a medication that would cure their ailments.   One group was given an actual medication while the other group was given a placebo or a phony. Surprisingly the people who had received a placebo were finding relief from their symptoms. A sugar pill was curing these people! What?! How could this be?!  Easy. They believed in this pill and what it could do for them. Their minds were set on the belief that this “medicine” was doing its job and even though the “pill” was not real, they were ailment free. Don’t believe me? Read up on it on the American Cancer Society webpage if you’re interested in learning more about it.  The American Cancer Society appropriately calls it expectation effects. If you expect you will be cured of your symptoms it will happen, and if you believe the medicine will fail and give you an adverse reaction, that can happen as well even though it is nothing but a solid piece of sugar. Now I’m not encouraging everyone to quit taking his or her medications nor am I saying this is the main message I’m trying to get through to you.  I just want you to contemplate on the thought that YOUR MIND IS A POWERFUL THING AND YOU ARE THE BOSS OF IT.

Your mind is very complex.

It involves your thoughts, memories, and emotions.  Your mind can make you feel great one minute and completely defeated the next. The mind exists in your head and it is not something we can physically see or tangibly feel; in other words, it’s not your brain.  It is your inner most thoughts; a place that only you are aware of at every moment, an invisible place if you may. A place where you hear that little voice that makes you think about a plethora of things from day to day activities, to the way you view yourself and others.    So who can control your mind? Honestly no one has control of your mind but YOU.  However, for me it is an easier said then done kind of relationship with this mind of mine.   Sometimes I think my mind is controlling me. I find my mind telling me who I am and how I should feel, and the truth is that most of the time I allow my mind to travel down the not so good path; the path that leads to criticism, defeat, insecurity and fear.  I allow for certain day to day events that could be considered to be tiny stumbling blocks or as I like to think of them now, learning opportunities, to overtake my thoughts, questioning what I did, why I did it, and how I could have done it better.   And don’t even get me started on the fact that I think I am a mind reader as well and I can completely guarantee myself what others are thinking of me.  I have allowed these negative thoughts to overwhelm my day and to question who I am as a woman in my career, my home, and as a mother.  However, there is hope at the end of the tunnel ladies! I am learning that I choose the thoughts and I’m making the decision to BELIEVE I am AMAZING, BEAUTIFUL, STRONG, and CAPABLE.  And this sounds like a simple equation that doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out but then why is it so hard?  It’s hard because like anything, when it becomes a habit, it is hard to kick it to the curb.  

Work It Out:

We have to exercise our minds like we exercise our bodies.  If you aren’t used to being your own positive coach, your own pep talker, little Ms. Positive Patty then like anything you want to be good at, you have to practice.  And just like you feel amazing when you work out your muscles and begin to shrink into those jeans you were staring at for a couple of months, you will begin to feel good about yourself when you begin being good to yourself.  Cut yourself a break when things don’t go as planned, give yourself a compliment or two each day whether it is about the way you look, or the way you acted in a certain situation.  You are worth it! You deserve to be good to you! Because the truth of the matter is anyone can tell you how great you are and how beautiful and strong you are as a woman, as a mother, as a housewife, or a career woman, but until you believe it yourself it isn’t going to happen.  You aren’t going to feel great.   Again, let’s compare it to working out.  You can get a really great trainer that knows all about how to work out the right muscles and eat the right foods, but until you do the work and decide to make a change nothing is going to happen.  The same goes for the way we feel about ourselves.  Until we change our mindsets and begin to change our thought process on the way we view ourselves and the things we do; we will continue to get stuck in that rut of unhappiness, insecurity, and fear.  It is time to change that thought process whether it is once in a while or very often.  It is time to believe the same things that everyone else believes that we are and we can do.

The following are a couple of suggestions:

Become aware and redirect:

Sometimes we are so busy with our everyday life and so used to our negative thought process that we may not be aware of when we are fostering these thoughts in our minds.  I encourage you to become aware of that little voice inside and every time you begin to think of things that are negative, redirect your thoughts into positive ones.  Even if you don’t believe in the positive thoughts you are telling yourself at first, even if that little negative voice starts to creep up again, tell it to STOP and tell yourself something positive.   “I feel bad that I didn’t finish my to do list, I’m always a few steps behind…STOP but I did so many other important things today and I’m happy that through out the day I was able to spend some quality time with my baby girl and that is important.  Look for the triggers too.  Be aware of when you feel negative the most. Is there something in particular that you feel really down about? Is there something you can do to make it better?  How can you be positive about that situation? What good might come out of it?

Read positive quotes, books, articles- like this one for a reminder 😉 , or even positive FB posts 

 The more positive things you surround yourself with the more positive you will feel.  If you aren’t a book reader, find quotes that are short and to the point.  Wite them in a journal you periodically look back into, or save them on your phone and when you have a free moment read them.   There are so many positive FB pages you can look into, religious or non religious.  Like their pages and they will show up on your news feeds. There are also so many positive books out there that are great. Take the time to research them and order them.  I particularly like buying the book on my Ipad I like reading a sample of the book before I purchase it.

Talk it out with an accountability partner or a good friend.

Sometimes the thoughts just get a little too overwhelming and when they do talk to a friend about it.  Find a person you trust to tell your thoughts to.  Express how you feel and they might be able to give you a different light on the situation. They might help you to see it isn’t as bad as it seems and sometimes if you just talk it out, you might realize this all on your own.  It might be uncomfortable for you to share at first, but so are 50 sit ups!   Try it out, you have nothing to lose.

So the next time you have these thoughts try a couple of these suggestions.  I have more suggestions too but I don’t want to overwhelm you with them just yet! Work out your mind and stay positive,

because remember you are WORTH IT!

 

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