Updated: Oct 11, 2022
We are all unique individuals making our own way in a big wide world. No two people will take away exactly the same feelings, emotions, experiences or outcome from a situation, event or activity. They might be similar but very rarely are they totally identical!
For example if three friends were to go to a cafe on a lovely sunny Sunday morning and each one ordered a full English breakfast. They all catch up on what has gone on since they last saw each other and exchange news. All having exactly the same food and conversation! But they would all leave that cafe with their own take or thoughts regarding the experience. One might leave thinking that the food was delicious but feeling like their life is so boring compared to the others as they hadn't achieved as much. Another might have felt that the food was too much as they were not able to eat it all, and whilst enjoying catching up they were constantly thinking of all the things they needed to do that day and therefore thinking when it would be ok to leave. The other might have felt the food took too long to arrive so didn't enjoy it as much as they had hoped they would but were pleased to be able to catch up with good friends. All having slightly different experiences of exactly the same event!
Life is very much formed from the thoughts we have and the beliefs that are formed as a result of them.
We can be brought up in the same family experiencing similar things yet form very differing views and beliefs. We can go through school with our peers attending the same lessons but come out with very different accounts of what it was like, what we learnt and with differing academic results. Why because we are all different, all unique! We learn differently, we feel differently and no one way fits all! Some of us will take what a teacher or person says quite personally and for others it just goes straight over their heads. Because it is what thoughts we take away from our experiences, what we therefore think or what we are repeatedly told that form our beliefs about ourselves, others, life and what we can and can't do.
A lot of our troubles as adults can arise from a situation or comment in the present that triggers an emotional response we felt in the past but have not let go off. Or from beliefs we formed about ourselves as children as a result of a flippant remark we heard or from what we were repeatedly told. As adults we may not even remember what it was and therefore feel confused by the reaction, the feeling that has developed or the behaviour it's caused or causing in our lives today. But the truth is our clever, brilliant subconscious mind does know and as it's whole purpose is to move us away from pain towards pleasure, so, it does what it can to stop us getting hurt. But it doesn't realise that those beliefs we formed back then no longer serve our lives today. In fact it is hurting us now more than helping us as we haven't made that clear. You see your mind does not recognise neutral words like don’t, can’t, no, not, later, maybe, or tomorrow. Your mind also does not care if what you tell it is good, bad, true, false, healthy unhealthy, or right or wrong, it accepts and acts on your words regardless. The mind can also not hold conflicting beliefs as they cancel one another out. The mind is a complex but phenomenal thing!
So the words we say to ourselves, the pictures we paint in our minds are so important as they effect and shape our lives daily.
That's why as parents, carers or teachers it is important that we observe the individual child as well as the children as a whole. That we recognise the learning style of the children in our care and work out the best way to connect to them, care for them and teach them especially should they need a more individual approach. That we realise labelling children or people has long term effects and children form opinions of themselves or others that are hard to shift. The parenting and teaching styles of the past need adapting and revamping to serve the children of today's world. We need to learn from the past, take the good bits and develop them. We need to consistently evolve as the world changes. Children of today live very different lives to those of past generations. So the more we help our children to become problem solvers, to think for themselves, to enjoy a challenge, to keep persevering or to take calculated risks the more they are equipped to survive in today's world as confident, resilient, happy individuals.
As adults we can do the same for ourselves and we need to talk nicely to ourselves. Be careful what we allow ourselves to think of situations. In fact we can change our experiences by changing our thoughts regarding it. We need to be our own best friend! We also need to be careful what we say to others in the heat of the moment or when annoyed as you can't take back your words. As adults we also need to recognise where our beliefs or behaviours were formed and, if they are not serving us or our lives now to have the confidence and courage to transform them so that they do.
If we were all to grasp this concept that we all develop based on our experiences and what thoughts we take away from them we would be making us and others #feelheapsbetter, making our lives phenomenal. We can do it and I know we can. I am as always here to help.