The mind is the master weaver, both of the inner garment of character and the outer garment of circumstance. ~James Allen
This is the time of year when we think about the past year and resolutions for a better new year. When we think about new choices for a more healthy and prosperous New Year, it is important that we think about our thoughts. How we see other people, the world and ourselves is determined by our thoughts. As Dr Wayne Dyer said, “Don’t believe everything you think.” The tagline that I use is, “Change your thoughts and your life will change.” People have said, easier said than done. My response is that you did not become you overnight and neither will your thoughts become new overnight
I recently had a conversation with a client about taking an exam. She had the ability to take practice tests while preparing for the big exam. She said that when she started to take the practice test she would get tense and anxious. I asked her why and she replied that she never did well on exams and that she would always freeze from fear.
We spoke further about how she was feeling and what the exam was about. She shared that she had been doing this work for many years and knew her job and she did not understand why she had to take an exam to prove her ability. We learned through further conversation that it was her attitude not only about taking exams but also about, to use her terms, having to prove herself and her abilities.
In walking through her current and past experiences, she was able to see that her thoughts made it difficult for her to do well on exams. At some time in her life, she had determined that she did not take exams well and always prepared for an exam with this in mind. Since she started the practice tests and exams with trepidation and anxiety, she was not able to relax in her knowingness. She knew the answers and she simply needed to acknowledge that. As she was quick to say, she had been doing the job for many years and had been studying for this exam for months.
When she finally went to take the exam, she said it was strange because this was the first time she was ever excited about taking an exam. She went in knowing that she knew her job and knew the answers.
What do you say to yourself when you fail a test? Do you make excuses or do you take responsibility for your actions? If you studied hard and did your best, don’t beat yourself up. Know that you did your best and will do better next time. If possible, you could look at the questions that you missed and focus on those so that you can do better on those questions. Whatever you may be challenged by, know that help is waiting for your request.
Choose to focus your thoughts on the good; in you, other people and the world. Think good thoughts.