I Think Therefor I Am
“I think therefore I am…."
Thinking has become my favourite past time! And now, like all passionate people with a new hobby, I am aghast at why more people are not doing this thinking thing more often…
In all of the thinking that I have done in the past 5 years - my most profound thought is that…
“Our beliefs are the foundation of our lives!”
I believe that the quality of our thoughts determine the quality of our lives and have spent most of the past 15 years examining, exploring and choosing what I think about everything in my life.
Our beliefs are extremely personal and very powerful. What you believe can change your life and the way that you live it and yet many of the beliefs that we hold are not ours. They are ideas and thoughts and rules that we have collected from others. I think of our heads like mail boxes that people post their ideas into as we grow up.
Our parents are usually the first to get in there - as we watch and witness our parents navigating life we absorb many messages that we believe must be true. They are planted firmly into our minds often without us even realising. The things we believe about money, religion, marriage, work ethic, friendship are all in there. And then we go about our business assuming that these are ‘our thoughts’ when in fact they are not.
When I was a little girl ...my Mother told me that I was not allowed to get my ears pierced until I was eleven years old. I could not wait to reach the magical age of eleven so that I could finally have holes in my ears. Finally my birthday came around and I was decorated accordingly. When my own daughter was nine years old she asked me if she could have her ears pierced - my response surprised me. “You cannot get your ears pierced until you are eleven” I said. “Why eleven?” she asked me. Suddenly I did not know. I thought about where this response had come from and realised that my Mother had come out of my mouth! It was a preprogrammed automatic response. Once my belief was out in the open I had a look at it and decided that in fact I did not think that it was true (for me). I could not think of any reason why my nine year old should not have her ears pierced and so off we went. Thirty minutes later there were holes in my daughters ears and I was at my Mothers house. As soon as my daughter showed my Mum her new earrings, my Mothers response was ‘she’s not even eleven yet’! I asked my Mum where that rule had come from and she said she had no idea! But that idea had been posted into the back of my head and I believed it. Until I didn’t! That's the best bit about beliefs - you can change them.
In my first book Look Gorgeous Be Happy, I wrote:
“Sometimes the only thing we can change is our mind”
Rene Descartes wrote in The Discourse on Method back in 1637 - "I think therefore I am”
He was a philosopher who was considering whether or not he actually existed! He concluded that because he was having the thought about his existence he must actually exist.
As someone who is passionate about people living magnificent lives, I think that the greatest gift we can give ourselves is a thought audit. Some space to decide who and what ‘I am’ and then to spend some time examining our thoughts, where they came from, whether we agree with them and if they are useful in our current life.
Our heads are full of thoughts and beliefs around many topics.
- "I am not good with money”.
- "No one supports me”.
- “I can’t trust anyone”.
- “I never have enough time”.
- “My health isn’t good”.
- “I never have enough energy”.
Our beliefs around money, support, belief, time, health & passion are critical to the quality of life that you are experiencing. Without these six things sorted, we will struggle to get our heads around the things that we crave the most like freedom, trust, action, control, energy & joy.
Before we can create a life where we feel free, powerful, happy and in charge we need to examine the thoughts that have gotten us to where we are today.
So where do you start?Each time that you have a thought examine it:
Where did it come from? Who did it come from? Is it useful for me in my life now?
Chris Helder’s book, “Useful Belief” is based on the theory that useful beliefs are better than positive thinking. It has strategies for creating beliefs that are useful for you.