Where do thoughts come from? Do you have control over what you think? Sometimes, yes, but not always. Thoughts can just spin round and round, ignoring your screams of enough! Some seem to arrive from nowhere, and some thoughts come from your beliefs.
Change your Perspective
What are beliefs? If you know something is true then you say "I know this is true" rather than just "I believe this is true." Which suggests a belief is something you hold to be true without evidence, an unsubstantiated perspective. Yet your beliefs influence your thoughts.
When you change a negative belief and instead focus on the benefits, then your thoughts also change. This means that if you change your perspective, you change your thoughts.
This insight has tremendous power. The secret of success is to investigate the validity of your beliefs. The effort you invest in exploring results in new, more powerful perspectives.
Many people will offer you beliefs saying, "Trust me, I'm on your side." But politicians are trained in sophism, manipulating even the most ridiculous proposals to sound plausible. They spin the truth for your vote to keep them in power. So quickly accepting any thought that appears credible is self sabotage, don't be gullible or impulsive. Ask yourself what they have to gain - analyze the long-term consequences...
Investigate your Beliefs
Investigate any belief that comes from another. If you have a bad vibe, then don't walk - run in the opposite direction. Consider your feelings carefully, ask where that belief could take you. How will it change your life if you buy into it, and who will benefit?
When you investigate your beliefs, some turn into real knowledge, some prove to be untrue, and some you'll be unable to verify. Neither discount nor accept these as authentic wisdom. Until a belief can be proven true, don't rush to agree with your self sabotage mechanism. You don't know if it's true or not, it's perfectly okay to remain undecided.
When someone insists you adopt their belief, rather than offer convincing proof, they generally haven't checked it out themselves. Then they may resort to playing your emotions. But if there is proof, then it'll still be true tomorrow, why do they pretend urgency?
You can't get fit by delegating your exercise!
So investigate all new perspectives. If it's consistent with what you already know, that implies it is probably true. But you'll only be able to say it's your truth once you've investigated it. Even if they know it to be true, how can you know before you've checked it out? It's just like exercise, you have to do the work yourself, you can't get fit by delegating your workout!
Since beliefs allow other people to manipulate you, there's little or no freedom in just believing. You end up adopting someone else's agenda, wondering what you've done with your life. Where have all your dreams gone? You gave them away when you chose to self sabotage, when you stopped believing in you and decided to believe others instead.
Food for Thought
"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude."
- Maya Angelou, American author and poet, lifetime Reynolds Professorship of American Studies
This article was originally published at selfgrowth.com/articles/do-your-thoughts-sabotage-or-support-you-part-6-in-the-self-sabotage-series