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As I have talked about before, I believe thought patterns and old tapes are one of the main things that prevent us from living happier. I am constantly amazed for both myself and my clients how these thought patterns can play in our unconscious without us even knowing. As I have said before, awareness is the key to stopping these patterns and deleting the tapes. Without awareness we cannot discover, let alone change these endless tape machines that drone in our brains.
This week I am in Oregon, visiting some very close friends of mine and doing a little skiing. I am actually in my ski gear as I type preparing to dash out the door and up to Mt. Bachelor. I am a beginner skier–I only ski one or two days a year and I just started skiing 5 years ago. I am not a terrible skier, I tend to go to fast and fall too often. But for the most part I really like it. I like the rush of trying something new, the thrill of going down the mountain. I especially like the post-skiing chili and beer which I share with one of my dearest friends as we re-cap the days events. I also hate skiing, I hate that I am not very good at it, I hate that 5 year olds can kick my butt as the zoom down the hill. I hate that I get so nervous I feel like I am going to puke each time I start out.
So this week my friends and I were talking about my mixed emotions around skiing. We were analyzing and bringing to awareness what it is I don’t like about it. Basically what I hate about is that it triggers old patterns for me. A few of these old tapes would be : “You are not good at physical activity, you are out of shape and uncoordinated. To be good at something you have to struggle–you can’t have fun while learning. Because you have to be the best.”
I don’t know if it is my protestant upbringing or the fact I had 2 older brothers who consistently belittled my physical prowess. Truth is, it doesn’t matter where those beliefs came from–what matters is they don’t serve me anymore. In fact, I am as I keep saying, ‘in the best shape of my life” I work out 5 days a week I swim, I lift weights, I do cardio. I am in good shape–maybe I am using different muscles to ski. The argument that I am not good at physical activity or uncoordinated is not true. Also, telling myself how terrible I am at skiing doesn’t make it any more fun. In fact it makes it miserable AND I am not going to get better at something that makes me so stressed.
Yesterday I started noticing my thoughts as I prepared for today’s ski trip. Anytime I repeated one of my tapes I gave myself a new belief, a new thought. This morning as I write this post, drinking my coffee in full ski gear I am looking forward to skiing. I am excited to see how I do, to just have fun, get some exercise, enjoy the company of a good friend and feel the wind as I whoosh down the mountain!
I will let you know how it goes!
Is there something you have a love/hate relationship with? What is something you dread doing? What messages are you telling yourself around this activity that might help you change perspective?