Shift Your Thoughts, Shift Your Life

autism empowerment neurodiversity positive thinking wellbeing Sep 01, 2022

If you want to know what you have predominantly been thinking about, look around you! What are you experiencing in your life right now? Do you have a magical life filled with awe and wonder, or is your life filled with worry and fear? If it's the latter, the good news is that the power to change your thoughts and, therefore, the circumstances in your life lie within you!

Everything starts with a thought. When we repeat a thought over and over, it becomes a habit of thinking. These thoughts then inspire our words and actions, which begin to move us toward the outcomes we experience. In other words, your thoughts, words, and actions have a lot of creative power!

If you are already experiencing everything you want out of life, keep doing what you are doing because your thoughts align with what you want. However, if you are experiencing many unwanted things in your life, it's time to shift your thoughts, because they are NOT aligned with what you want and, therefore, aren’t serving you.

The first step in the shifting process is to identify the old, negative thoughts and take them captive. Some thoughts are more evident than others, and we might sometimes need to dig under the surface to find the thoughts we think unconsciously. Another way of looking at it is that we may have been thinking some thoughts so long that they have become part of our automatic thinking, and we may not even know they are there!

We want to banish these thoughts from our minds and proceed to step two, identifying the new thoughts that will take their place. This second step is critical because, without a replacement thought, we will fall right back into the habit of thinking the old thought. We will give an example of this in just a moment.

The final step is to practice that new thought until it becomes your new habit of thought. This can take a little time, especially if you have been thinking those old limiting thoughts for a while. The earlier you can catch yourself thinking the old thoughts, the easier it will be to remind yourself about your new replacement thoughts.

Let me give you an example of a couple of standard "limiting" thoughts we hear from the young adults we serve. One prevailing thought is, "I will never have any friends." A replacement thought for this could be, "I'm open to meeting new people that would make for great friends." Another thought would be, "I am now ready to allow new friendships into my life." Both of these thoughts represent what we want to create.

Another common thought is “I will never have a job” or “No one will ever hire me." These negative thoughts are not aligned with what our students want. In this example, one replacement thought would be, "I’m excited to be employed in a job that matches my skills and abilities." Another would be, "Employers are interested in hiring someone with my skills, abilities, and dedication." Both of these supportive thoughts open up the possibility of being employed

So now it's your turn. Take a moment to think about your life, identify some of the old thoughts you need to take captive, and shift to your new and empowering thoughts!