“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” – Ancient proverb
Your thoughts are immensely powerful. SO powerful that they shape your very reality. Now, I’m not talking about some belief that your thoughts communicate with the universe and then the universe gives you what you’re thinking about. Being a more practical man, I’d like to share with you my observations on how your thinking affects your intentions and decisions, which in the end shape your life.
First you continually think about, and how you think about it, will ultimately affect your perception. When I was in the US Marine Corps, my commanding officer said to me, “Medina, perception is reality. No matter what the truth is, whatever people perceive will be the truth to them.” In the years since then I’ve observed this to be true. When we constantly think a certain way, be begin to persuade ourselves that what we’re thinking is true. In reality, much of what we think is comprised of firmly held beliefs rather than truths, but in time our mind stops seeing the difference. Once we perceive something to be true, we tend to form our intentions based on that perceived truth.
These intentions then direct our decisions. For example, I grew up thinking I was profoundly ugly. So, throughout high school and college I never had a girlfriend. This perception led me to the intention of not bothering to try to engage any woman in conversation, even if I was very strongly attracted to her. After all, what was the use? The decision not to bother even trying to talk to the ladies resulted in a rather dull and lonely social life. It wasn’t until I served in the Marine Corps that I made a shocking discovery.
I was sent to deliver a message to the female platoon, and so stopped outside their barracks (males could not go past the first entryway).One of the young women went inside to tell the platoon that there was someone from 4th Platoon with a message. Another female voice asked who it was, and the woman I’d spoken to said, “Medina.” At this point, it sounded as though the entire platoon said, “Awwww.”
Apparently, all 50 of them thought I was a cute little bugger. Who knew?
This discovery changed my thoughts, which then changed my intentions and decisions concerning women, and my social life became less lonely and a lot more interesting.
So, my challenge to you today is to begin to examine your habitual thoughts and start eliminating the ones which are pointing away from your dreams. When you confront a thought habit which seems to do so, ask yourself whether it’s really the truth, or just a belief. When you find that it’s just a misguided belief, make a decision to eliminate it from your thinking. You owe it to your vision to do so.
To this day, when I’m about to shave, I sometimes look in the mirror and say, “There’s a good-looking brother!”