Most of us feel upset and resentful from time to time, and for some that feeling seems to almost always be with us. The word “resent” means literally to refeel, so those who carry resentments are simply replaying unhappy times in their lives over and over again. One lady I worked with at one time kept saying to me, “But how can I feel happy when my husband is gone.” I would usually tell her that she could feel sad that he was no longer with her, but she could begin to let go of the constant feelings of grief. She insisted that wasn’t possible. She would tell me that no matter how engrosing whatever she was doing was, she would also be thinking of how much she missed her husband and about all the things she wished she had done differently in her life with him..
It is very difficult to shift our thinking from one channel to another, but it can be done with lots and lots of practice. The process can begin with the realization that no matter how hard we work at it, we can not change reality. My patient’s husband was not going to come back, and she would never be able to change the way her life with him had been. By spending so much of her energy resenting the fact that he was gone, she was in effect poisoning the current monments in her life. We talked about the fact that her husband would not have wanted her to think that way, and gradually she began to see that she could begin to shift her thinking to more positive thoughts.
Many people allow their thinking to get stuck in certain tracks, and they come to believe that it is not possible to change this. Their take on life is that they feel what they feel, and there is no way to feel differently. In recent years, science has come a long way toward proving that what we think determines what plays out in our lives. It doesn’t do so directly, of course, or we would all be winning the lottery all the time. But when we think we are helpless to change our thinking, we find that is true in our lives. When we begin to think about all the ways we might be able to shift our thought processes, we find we can do that occasionally. Since practice makes perfect, we find that our ability to change our thinking can grow.
To give you an example of how this words, I will tell you that my parents lived through the “great depression” just prior to my birth. It colored their lives and I grew up thinking that no matter how much I had, it was never enough. Eventually I realized that my thoughts were always of scarcity, so scarcity was what I attracted to my life. I worked very hard at shifting my thoughts to abundant thinking. I would get mail from many worthy causes asking for donations. In the past, I always felt that I did not have enough to give funds away. Slowly I sifted my thinking to the realization that I might not have much, but I had more than many others, so I opted to share the little I had. Since I was sending out abundant thoughts into the universe, the abundance in my life grew and grew.
If you have decided you want to learn to control your own thoughts (which will indeed change the way you view life and the people in it) you can begin by taking baby steps and progress from there. Whenever, you find your thinking is going around and around like a hampster on a wheel, tell youself that you would like to change the way you are thinking. The way that works best for me is to ask for help from a power greater than myself. I simply say, “Please help me not think this way.” It helps if you have some more positive thoughts available. Think about something for which you are grateful. Think, perhaps, about the reward you will give yourself when you have achieved a change in thinking. Above all else, do not be discouraged when your thoughts shift back into an old rut. Simply allow yourself to be aware that this has happened, and try again. It will work if you work at it.
Sherry – About the Author:
I’m a retired senior, married 53 years, and have three sons and two grand children. I’ve written all my life but have only published two books and one workbook. I worked over 20 years as an addictions’ counselor. My most recent book is of scripture based daily meditations and is titled “Talks with our Creator.” Information about the book can be found at http://www.Sherryschultz377.com/MyBookBlog.