Updated: Mar 14
I want to talk today about habits of the mind. Ask yourself: what is a thought I have on a daily basis that tells a story about me? What is a thought that proclaims the narrative of my life? Is it a good thought or does it breed negativity in my life? Has this thought been present since my childhood or is it something recent? Our thoughts tell a story about ourselves and are responsible for creating habits in our daily lives that either lift us up or pull us down. Once we acknowledge the truth of what we are thinking, how we see ourselves and what habits are detrimental to our overall wellbeing, the sooner we can pivot away from those negative thoughts and rewire our brains to think better about ourselves, believe in ourselves and love ourselves. I've learned in recent years that its ok to love yourself; in fact, its actually a good thing. Growing up in the Catholic church, there's an element of self-loathing, guilt and denial that comes with the territory; but only in recent years have I learned that there's a difference between self-loathing and humility. That God wants us to love ourselves because we were made in His image and likeness and we must first love ourselves before we can love others. When we breed negative thoughts about ourselves, our habits start to reflect those thoughts and cause self-deprecating behavior in our life.
Throughout our life we form neural pathways in our brain that are created based on our habits and behaviors. These pathways are deep grooves, or roads, that form and strengthen when we repeat an action or thought and with enough repetition, these behaviors become automatic. Depending on how these Neural pathways are formed, they can either help or harm us. Looking back on my life, I realize that, from an early age, I have formed a pathway in my brain that automatically takes me to a place of sadness, loneliness and feelings of inferiority. I took a deep dive into my past and realize that I may have experienced some trauma at an early age that has never really been resolved, and I have taught myself to feel comfort in these negative thoughts and discomfort when I feel good about myself. It's like the saying, 'misery loves company.'
I know now that by changing my thoughts, I can change my habits and become happier and healthier. I want to give you a challenge today to be Aware of what thoughts pop into your mind when you look in the mirror, when you have a conversation with someone, when you do an activity... How do you treat yourself on the inside? How do your thoughts shape how you feel physically? Just as we use exercise to shape our body, we can use meditation as an exercise of the mind, where we can shape our mindset to create a healthier You 🤗