The Thought Model Changed My Life
No that’s not an overstatement.
My life truly changed when I discovered the thought model.
When I learned about the thought model, I realized that the thoughts in my head were merely sentences I was telling myself. That those thoughts were not necessarily facts or truths. When I realized that the thoughts I was thinking were optional, my life began to change.
Why? Because that’s everything warriors.
The thoughts we’re think are why we feel what we’re feel.
The thoughts we’re think are why we are act the way we’re act.
The thoughts we’re think are why we don’t do what we want to be doing.
The thoughts we are thinking are why our life is as it is.
Some of you will want to fight me on this.
Listen in to your brain right now. Are you thinking: “yeah well Susie, you don’t have the mom I have. You don’t have the past I have. You don’t have the job or the spouse I have.”
How does that feel warrior?
To think that your life is as it is because of that mom, spouse, job or past?
It is my experience that that does not feel good.
Blame or Responsibility?
When I blame the things happening in my life or the things other people are doing for how I’m feeling, I feel constricted, disempowered, and worse, like a bystander of my life. I feel out of control and panicky. When I blame things outside of me for what I feel like inside I feel anxious and awful.
That said, I understand your urge to fight me on this. The urge to continue to blame others for your feeling state or current situation.
I mean, why not?
It’s what everyone around us seems to be doing.
Blame the school.
Blame the traffic.
Blame our past.
Blame the president.
Blame’s Little Secret
Blaming pretends to be easier in the short term. When we blame, we don’t have to take responsibility for what’s going on. It seems easier to blame someone for how we feel than to take responsibility for those feelings.
When I could blame my mom for how I felt when I got off the phone with her, I didn’t have to take responsibility for choosing to get on the phone with her in the first place, or to pay attention to the thoughts I was thinking about our phone conversation. When I could blame my kids for my overwhelm, I didn’t have to take responsibility for my lack of organizational skills.
Welcome to Being an Adult
Gentle reminder, warriors: this is adulting. Adulting is hard. Adulting is also awesome. The hard piece is owning that the life we’re living is because of the choices we’re making. The awesome piece is realizing we have the autonomy to make those decisions. The balance lies in being kind to ourselves as we are learn to accept our influence and our role in our own life. IN realizing that when we point a finger out to blame someone, there are far more fingers pointing right back at us.
THERE IS NO POWER IN BLAME #radicalresponsibility #emotionaladult Click To TweetHere’s the rub: while it may seem easier to blame others, it doesn’t feel better.
When we blame, we put ourselves in the role of victim. We tell ourselves this story in our head “if only they did this then…” or “if only this hadn’t happened then….” and feel out of control. This makes sense because we are out of control. We gave our control for our feeling state to something outside of us instead of taking radical responsibility to remember that we feel how we feel because of the thoughts we’re thinking. No one or no thing has the power to make us feel a certain way. It can influence us but we are always in control of the thoughts we think about it.
You Are In Charge Of Your Life
You are in charge of your life and the more you see it this way, the calmer and more peaceful you will feel. When you feel as if you are not in control of your life, you feel out of control emotionally. I encourage you to remind yourself that everything in your life is a choice: You choose if you go to the party or not. You choose whether you eat cookies or not. You choose whether to carpool your kids or not. You choose whether to skip your exercise or not. Please begin to notice where you’re blaming others and see if you can stop the cycle.
How To Shift from Blame to Radical Responsibility?
A simple way to start this process is to change your language. Instead of saying: I have to, change to saying “I choose to”. Instead of saying “I can’t” change to saying “I choose not to”.
Once you see the options as choices, versus you being the victim of things happening in your life, you can look at the options more reasonably. Ask yourself: What do I want to do? What makes most sense for me and my family? Return to your core desired feelings.
Another way I catch myself in the blame cycle is to look at what I complain about. Complaining is the polar opposite of radical responsibility. It is similar to blame in that it feels semi helpful in the moment yet it solves nothing. It changes nothing. And, ultimately, like blaming, complaining leads us to a feeling disempowered and out of control.
Recently I found myself complaining about the cold weather here. Especially unhelpful. What was my point? If I verbalize my complaint, I’m planting that negative thought in someone else’s head and I then share the negative feeling state. Radical responsibility looks like me being aware of my discomfort with the cold and grey while kindly reminding myself that it’s my choice to stay here. As adults we always have options. I could abandon my kids. I could take off and move to Tahiti. This is using both tools: catching the complaint and changing the language: saying I choose to instead of I have to.
This is still a work in progress. By no means am I perfect at it. But life is all about progress over perfection.
Join Me This Week
Want to join me this week in practicing radical responsibility? Let’s try this: ask yourself, where are you blaming others? What are you containing about? How often do you hear yourself saying: I have to….
First step is awareness. Let’s do it warriors. I’ll be practicing with you
If you know someone who could use this message today, please share it. The more of us taking responsibility for our actions and our lives, the more of us who feel better and that’s better for everyone.
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