Self- talk|How you think determines how you are

Posted on November 16, 2009


“It runs in my family.”     “People my age don’t really do that.”      “That’s never been me.”positivity

Say it & it will be so. Wayne Dyer calls statements people make such as these, “mind viruses.” And they really are virus-like. They spread to the rest of your brain, your actions, your belief system & inoculate you with matching actions, thoughts about yourself & actions or non-actions.

I met a man last week in my work consulting with people about their health & fitness. He said that he listens to tons of music while he works in his study. When we discussed him getting out & walking or biking a few days a week to keep the heart disease he’s at risk for given his other medical conditions at bay, he told me that “people his age don’t really do the whole ‘download music, wear headphones & go out exercising.” He was 68. I told him I had to disagree with him on that statement, given that I could think of immediately think of 3 people who are 65, 67, & 75 who all download music & use ipods while exercising!

The age that you feel- the ability you think you have- are all dependant on how you see yourself. 68 is really not that old. Granted, some people will not have good health or good fortune that will allow them to live until 68 – but the vast majority of us could have health that takes us to 100 years old – and I’m talking coherent at 100, not sitting in a chair drooling on yourself at 100.

It is possible to live healthfully, but in America, it will require more vigilance over your healthy habits. There are populations all around the world that still have people who live well into their 90’s & who still do chores, run a household, ride bicycles, and carry on as if they were only 65 years young! The populations where this is not common are places where American lifestyles and eating habits have moved in. I hate to break it to any proud American, but study after study of “native” populations has shown that they have massively better health than Americans do…UNTIL American ways seep into the native cultures. Exactly at that time, rates of diabetes, heart disease, depression, and obesity sky rocket. Michael Pollan outlines this extensively in In Defense of Food, a “readers’ manifesto” that will show just how broken down we have made food & how most of what Americans eat is not, in fact, food. (*Sidenote: Probably my fave read of this year, if that helps you decide to read or listen via audiobook this one)

To have the chance at every opportunity available to you, you’ll need to harness the power of your thoughts. No one is asking you to be on pointe every moment of every day with your positive thoughts. We’re all going to have moments when we veer from the path & allow negative self-talk to creep in. I get stuck in negative self-talk every so often- usually if I’m hormonal- & thankfully have someone who sees it immediately & alerts me to my negativity in a helpful & constructive manner. If you don’t have someone around you who can and does think similarly to your positive train of thought, you need to make a new friend who is similar to you & can help you stay on your positive track as regularly as possible.

There are very few things that “run in the family” legitimately. Yes, a very small % of people will have high cholesterol due to genetic conditions, but many families pass along habits, not actual disease. It only takes 1 generation to break a bloodline. One couple who chooses to raise their kids differently than how they were raised. One kid choosing exercise, proper nutrition, and a positive mental attitude can change what “runs in the family” for all future generations. What family habits are you contributing to?

Decide today to catch yourself thinking positive things about yourself & your situation. Choose to avoid negative thoughts & when you do slip & think negatively, have an “out” that will quickly take you away from the negative thoughts. As I’ve said before, my “out” for any negative behavior or thought is to ask myself, “What’s the payoff?” It helps me to see that what I’m thinking or doing is not on-point with where I want to be heading.

As it is said, so it will be. What would you like “it” to be?