We often hear the cliche ‘Life is what you make it’ or ‘You get out what you put in.’ But have you ever stopped and actually thought about these concepts? Have you taken a moment to look at your life and consider your personal spin on the world around you? You are the one telling your story. Yes - there are numerous situations and people in life, completely out of your control. BUT - you are always responsible for your reaction to these events or people.
Let’s put this in a scenario. I’ve chosen a gym here, but this could easily be a workplace, a parent group, or any social event:
You walk into a new gym class. Of course there’s some element of nerves or trepidation, it’s a new environment for you, full of new adult people.
Now, how do you react to the strangers around you? Do you:
Immediately tell yourself they’re all fitter than you and that you’re going to look foolish?
Look at what they’re wearing and feel out of the group because of what you’re wearing?
Look at what they’re wearing and think, “Phew, at least I’ve got my activewear right!
Think, this is scary but exciting. I’m going to be a fit/strong/healthy person too! These guys are inspiring!
Let’s take this a step further, look at who you perceive as the ‘fittest’ person in the room. Do you:
Think she looks stuck up
Get angrier at yourself for coming because you’ll never look like that
Think you’d look like that too if it wasn’t for work/kids/money, etc.
Look at them in awe and respect for the time they’ve committed to their health and fitness
Now imagine each of these scenarios and fast forward 6 months. Depending on your response to the above, you’ve either:
Given up the gym, or
You enter each session with negative thoughts about other people in the group but you’re determined to get your workout done
You enter each session with negative self talk about your performance or what you look like and spend the session mentally beating yourself up but you have to be there because you look the way you look
You are happy, with improved health and fitness levels. You get excited about getting to the gym and surrounding yourself with like-minded people
Can you see now how a simple shift in perspective can change the outcomes in your life, and certainly your level of happiness and fulfilment? Now, apart from the person who gave up the gym, the other 3 responses above could end up with similar physical outcomes. But only one is happy and fulfilled. And that, simply put, is the person who chose to be happy. If you choose to find a nasty person, I guarantee you’ll find one. If you choose to see an inspiring, determined person, that is what you’ll see.
I chose a gym scenario here, because gyms are places that take a lot of people out of their comfort zone. The way we react when we’re uncomfortable is a great starting point for turning your perspective around. Next time you’re in an uncomfortable situation, have a listen to the way you’re talking to yourself. Remember you can change this talk!
Give it a go, you’ll be amazed how the people in your life will change, and so will your mindset.
Things will still go wrong because we can't control the world or other people. Now you will just be better equipped to dealing with these things and moving forward.