In this recent post I made the case that you have a strong influence on the things that happen in your life, and the few you don’t contribute to is shockingly miniscule. Most people get defensive at that statement and immediately jump to some exception to argue against it. (Like a random meteorite landing on your garage.) This is a bad premise and an extremely harmful life strategy, because there are almost always outlier exceptions to everything. More importantly, by making this argument you’re refusing to accept responsibility for your life. The logical conclusion to this line of thinking takes you to outlandish assumptions like, “I can’t control that an earthquake killed innocent people, so it’s not my fault that I am emotionally abusive to my spouse.”
Don’t live in denial by thinking your life is a random happenstance or that you have a positive vision and expectations but are constantly experiencing negative outcomes by some exception to universal laws. Tragedies, accidents, and misfortunes occur to everyone. But endless cycles of those events occur only to people who co-create them with their negative expectations and/or subconscious emotional payoffs. If you want to grow as a person and move toward enlightenment, you have to get out of denial and recognize the contribution you are making to both the good and bad events happening in your life. And once you accept that, it’s a lot easier to increase the positive part of the equation. Start with a true and correct premise:
Your current situation in life is the direct result of the vision you have.
You may have a negative vision, a positive one or a neutral one. The only way to know is to take inventory of the results you’re creating in life. It all begins with the power of thought. If you don’t choose your thoughts, there are plenty of entities that will choose them for you: The Biden and Trump Super PACs, Coke and Pepsi, Facebook and Google, and Amazon and Netflix.
If you’re not sure of your mindset, worldview or political hot button, just logon to your Facebook page and check what comes up in your feed. Because Facebook knows even if you don’t. Click on a link and instantly ten similar posts will materialize, achieving four functions: keep you on the platform longer, increase the ad revenue you are generating for them, inflame your emotion, and anchor your worldview deeper.
If you don’t understand what touches you emotionally and causes you to act, every one of those entities I mentioned above will be happy to do it for you. Because they (and their algorithms) have already done the research. They probably know more about you than you know yourself. Really. Because they analyze you clinically, objectively, and dispassionately. They know exactly how to program you to behave in a way that achieves their objectives. And these are just the marketers. We haven’t mentioned governments, organized religion, and all the batshit crazy people you’re surrounded by.
The critical part of increasing the positive outcomes in your life begins with upgrading your thought process. To do this requires first becoming conscious of the process. For most people, their thoughts just play out, mostly determined by the environment and ecosystem they’ve surrounded themselves with. If you’re watching five to six hours of TV every night, it’s highly unlikely that you’re ever going to create a positive vision and expectations for yourself. Likewise if you’re reading the news sites, spending prodigious amounts of time with victim-mentality people, or attending a place of worship that beats you down every week. You need people and mediums that inspire you to become the highest possible version of yourself. And you need to be exposed to positive programming in the form of uplifting stories, positive reinforcement, and spiritual nourishment.
If you’re a regular reader of this blog or a subscriber to my podcast, you should have a pretty solid idea about the cause and effect relationship between programming, daily habits, and the end result (your life). Here’s what the process looks like:
To manifest a more prosperous life, you’ve got to rise above your thoughts and become conscious of them. Instead of simply experiencing emotional reactions to random stimuli, you must become the thinker of the thought, consciously choosing your line of thinking. That begins by being mindful of the external factors (people, environments and platforms) you allow to influence your thinking. Now the process looks like this:
Here’s the stark reality:
You control your thoughts – or your thoughts control you. Choose mindfully.
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