David Goleman wrote that emotions are impulses to act. It’s so obvious that I’ve never thought of it seriously. It wasn’t any rocket science for me. I heard about it so many times that it didn’t matter to me much.
On the other side of the equation, I was always wondering why I couldn’t change the way I reacted to certain incidents, the way I behaved, the way I talked, the way I was taking decisions. I was always wondering why I couldn’t change myself despite all efforts I have put into trying to be different.
It’s like when I was a kid and I was confessing all the time the same sins. Once I was absolved, it took me one or two days to get back onto the same path of the same sins. Nothing was changing. I wasn’t improving. I was repeating the same schemes and following the same patterns. I didn’t know why I couldn’t overcome my weaknesses.
It took me years to finally understand one day that I don’t have to change my acts. I don’t have to change the way I behave. The way I react. The way I take decisions. I have to change my emotions. I have to change the way I think. The way I perceive things.
My acts change automatically when I switch my thoughts to new patterns. When I rediscover that there are plenty of different perspectives. When I realize that my point of view is not the only one which is always right. It helps me to bite my tongue and stop continuing unnecessary discussions.
Change your thoughts so that your behavior changes as well.
How to change the thoughts?
1. You are what you read, what you watch, what you hear
Narrow down or restrict your access to negative content. Remove any source of frustrating information. Your life is already full of drama. You don’t need to add people’s dramas to your basket. You don’t need to get caught into a catastrophic vision of your future. Instead, look for valuable content which brings positive vibes. Choose the content which empowers you to see things differently the way you’ve never seen them before.
You are the books you read, the movies you watch, the people you hang out with and the conversations you engage in. Be careful what you feed your mind with.
2. Write down what you are or you should be grateful for
This is not something I practiced for a long time, but when I do, it opens my eyes to the things I pretend not seeing as blessings, success or wealth. I’m amazed at how many things are overlooked by me just because they don’t seem to be big enough. We’re used to taking these things for granted while some people don’t get them all their life. Count your joys and enjoy them.
Enjoy little things. One day you may look back and realize they were big things.
3. Only now matters
One of my worst life acts were caused by the bitter of yesterday and the fear of tomorrow. Don’t let the bitter define who you are and don’t let the fear decide how do you behave. Your now gives you a unique opportunity to be free from your shadows. You’ll not find relief in the past nor happiness in the future. Happiness is now.
I will be happy when things happen this way. It is like postponing your happiness to an unsure future. The better alternative is to try to postpone your sorrow to some future moment as much as you can.
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