Do you experience more chaos or peace in your life? I definitely felt more chaotic for a long time…
Even when things were going “well,” something crazy, stressful or frustrating would always pop up and steal my thunder!
I’d do everything possible to keep bad things from happening, but it didn’t seem to matter. That’s when I had the BIG “ah-ha!”
The things I tried to control were all external. I tried changing how others behaved or I’d avoid situations that felt “bad.” I’d distract myself with work, cleaning the house or watching movies so I didn’t have to deal with the anxiety of the situation.
Yet, because I’m constantly listening to podcasts, attending seminars and hiring coaches to help me increase self-awareness and erase blind spots, I realized the real work needed to be done internally.
I had to stop moving away from “bad” situations or feelings and move towards them so I could emotionally work through those thoughts, feelings and beliefs.
Distraction and denial are two psychological coping mechanisms that often intensify or expand the anxiety we are attempting to avoid!
They move us in the direction of chaos. Chaos is complete disorder and confusion. In chaotic situations, it feels like everything around us is random and unpredictable, which is frightening to our brain because one of its main functions is to decipher meaning and predict outcomes so it can keep us safe.
When your brain can’t understand or make sense of what’s happening, or what might occur next, it kind of freaks out! The adrenaline rush heightens our awareness and we develop great sensitivity to small details or changes. (Everything becomes a mountain instead of a molehill.)
Chaos moves us in the direction of insecurity. It makes us feel emotionally fragmented and out of control. Imagine your brain trying to move in ten different directions at once!
The only solution or way out of the chaos is to move towards a mental and emotional state of integration or wholeness. Imagine your mind, brain, physical and energetic body all working in harmony.
There is no resistance or fighting the thoughts or experiences we have. Instead, we “flow” with the thoughts and direct them in a manner that cultivates “positive” outcomes and more rewarding emotional growth. In a way that creates inner peace…
In order to attain this higher level of emotional maturity, you must continually work on strengthening your emotional intelligence. The definition of emotional intelligence is…
“the capability of individuals to recognize their own emotions and those of others, discern between different feelings and label them appropriately, use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior, and manage and/or adjust emotions to adapt to environments or achieve one’s goal.” (Webster 2019)
Chaos <———-> Peace
Every thought you have is moving you towards chaos or peace. Paying attention to your thoughts gives you the ability to accept the conceptual meaning or reframe the thought so it moves you towards peace.
For example, this thoughts pops into mind. “Nothing works out for me.” You can’t control the fact that this thought entered your conscious awareness.
However, you can control what you DO with this thought. If your internal response to this thought is to feel sick, scared, overwhelmed or angry, it means you’ve (often unconsciously) decided to accept this “idea” as truth. This will produce a sensation of feeling helpless and out of control, which moves you towards chaos.
If you take the same thought and analyze or reframe it, new possibilities and outcomes instantly appear…
“Nothing works out for me.” “Really? Nothing has EVER worked out for me, EVER? Ok, things have worked out for me, but I haven’t made a million dollars yet/lost the weight yet/been happy in my relationship yet!”
Analyzing: “True. So what would have to happen for me to increase my income/lose the weight/improve my relationship? What if I wrote down all the things that need to happen, that are in MY control and then prioritize this list so I knew exactly what step to take next?”
Reframing: “I suppose that would make me feel MORE in control, but what if it doesn’t work out again? Well, at least I’m trying and I feel much happier and more supported when I am working towards my goal than sitting around feeling sorry for myself.
OK, if this idea that nothing ever works out for me pops into mind again, I’m going to add the word YET. “The approach I’m using hasn’t worked out YET. So, I’m going to change my approach and keep going UNTIL it does work out for me. Wow! I’m starting to feel better already!”
Analyzing and Reframing can empower and fill you with hope and inner security. The accumulation of these feeling are what many describe as “inner peace.”
Today, begin paying attention to your daily thoughts and notice whether they are moving you towards chaos or peace. Then use the tools and insights listed here to empower yourself as quickly as possible. (Put those fires out when they are small!)
Like everybody else, you’ll need help doing this along the way. If you feel stuck, seek out help immediately and you’ll get UNstuck and “in the flow” before you know it!
If I can be of assistance, please reach out!
Thanks for reading and make today a Shurr ! Success
Tim Shurr, MA
President, Shurr Success, Inc.
Founder, Indy Hypnosis Center
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