Visualize this thing that you want, see it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blue print, and begin to build. — Robert Collier
I originally ran this post in 2012, and it seems even more relevant today.
Nearly every time I update myself on the news, I find it challenging not to get derailed from what I really want to focus on. From talking with others, I know I’m in good company. But the way to get through it — “it” being whatever it is you don’t want more of — isn’t to get mired in complaining or hand-wringing. It’s to move forward and focus on what you want and take control of the things you can control.
At worst focusing on what we don’t want brings us more of it — really consider what *that* means! — and at best it distracts us from our own lives and how we want to shape them.
So with that, I’m republishing the post below. Enjoy!
If you ride a motorcycle, you know not to look at what you don’t want to steer toward. You want to look at the road ahead, at the direction you want to travel in, not at the concrete wall or tree you want to avoid.
Similarly, in life the more you focus on something, the more of it you bring into your life. If you’re focusing on something you love and want more of, that’s great. If, however, you’re focusing on something you dislike by pushing against it, then it’s time to stop focusing on it.
You can’t improve your life by focusing on what you don’t want.
Here are a few ideas to change your life that do work:
1. Pay attention to your own emotions.
If you’re feeling frustrated, angry, hurt, etc., that is a clue to shift your thoughts to another topic. Once you start paying attention to what you’re thinking, you might be surprised how much of your day is spent mentally pushing back at what you don’t want in your life. Once you’re aware of those thoughts, you can work on redirecting them.
2. Focus on what you do like.
For example, if your boss has the annoying habit of interrupting you when you talk, don’t focus on that by complaining about it to anyone who will listen. Instead, figure out something you like about him or her. Does she compliment you for a job well done? Does he listen to your ideas and carefully consider them?
3. Focus on a different job/imagining a better situation.
What if you’re in a terrible situation with a boss who seemingly has no redeeming qualities? Again, instead of whiling away your work hours by seething at your desk, direct your attention instead to imagining your perfect work situation. Imagine what it would be like to look forward to coming into work. Imagine being spoken to respectfully by your supervisor. Imagine how you’ll feel at the end of a peaceful, productive day. Use the power of your mind to create what you want, not more of what you don’t want.
What are you resisting and what can you do to focus on what you want instead?