What’s the inner dialogue you have running? Does it lift your hopes and dreams, or deep down are you sabotaging yourself with negativity and doubt? There’s a famous quote by Lao Tzu that says, “Watch your thoughts, they become your words; watch your words, they become your actions; watch your actions, they become your habits; watch your habits, they become your character; watch your character, it becomes your destiny.” Inspired by the guest on our last episode; “Can Your Thoughts Really Change Your Life? (w/Coach and Author Christine Meyer)”, we set out to implement some of her suggestions to see the impact thoughts had on our lives. Spoiler Alert, it was huge.
In this bonus episode, some of the things we dive into are: how shifting thoughts and attitudes when things don’t go our way can affect not only our mood but our outcomes; how being willing to experiment with even the smallest changes can lead to huge results and how focusing on someone else’s issues sometimes keeps us stuck in our own.
Circumstances and other people are not within our control, but we can certainly affect ourselves, others and our circumstances by the way we perceive and ultimately deal with things. That doesn’t mean we’re on our own. If we ask, God is there to guide us, and some situations will require professional help. Are you ready to take responsibility for your life change? Click play for some great ideas.
Check out “Can Your Thoughts Really Change Your Life? (w/Coach and Author Christine Meyer)
For more info on IMAGINE YOURSELF with Lanee Blaise and Sandy Kovach or to contact us, visit imagineyourselfpodcast.com
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Sandy Kovach [00:00:02]:
Welcome to Imagine Yourself podcast, where we help you imagine the next chapter of life with grace, gratitude, courage, and faith.
Lanee Blaise [00:00:10]:
Hello, everybody out there. Thank you for joining us on Imagine Yourself podcast. I'm Lanee here with Sandy. And I wonder too. Now, we're going to talk and jump into our topic, but if you, just from the kindness of your heart, would be willing to like and subscribe and follow our podcast. Whether you listen on Apple or Spotify or right at our website, imagineourselfpodcast.com it truly does help as far as bringing new listeners in and just bumping up our whole inspiration over here with that.
Sandy Kovach [00:00:43]:
Are we an operation?
Lanee Blaise [00:00:45]:
We're an operation now. We are an operation dedicated to all of us imagining our best selves.
Sandy Kovach [00:00:51]:
Oh, I feel like we're doing something important.
Lanee Blaise [00:00:53]:
We are. And actually, I think we are. And I believe we are because we're about to talk about what we're thinking and how that affects what we're doing and what we're being and what we're ending up in our life. I mean, we just recently had an episode called can Your Thoughts Really Change Your Life? And the answer to that is a big, fat, juicy yes. You like that? Yeah. We had Christine Meyer. She's an executive life coach. She's an author. She has a book that she wrote I read. It's called keep it simple, smarty pants. And Sandy, she has me fired up. I can't stop thinking about the different things that she was talking about, and I just had these different takeaways. And I know you're the same way. You have different things that you have already actively put in place in your life based on what she said about thoughts.
Sandy Kovach [00:01:45]:
Yeah. So I'll start out by saying to get something out of this podcast, you certainly don't have to have listened to Can Thoughts Really Change Your Life? You can pause this and go back if you want, but I think either way, after you listen to this, you'll find yourself wanting to get more details on what Christine has to say. But basically, thoughts have more of an effect on how our life goes, and we have more control of our thoughts and how our life goes than we think. She calls it empowerment. We have the power. So I don't know. Do you want to start out with an example or maybe I feel like we should. Linnet just sum it up a little bit so that everybody has a perspective in case they didn't listen to the podcast.
Lanee Blaise [00:02:30]:
The perspective that I pulled from it, I mean, there were so many things because even in the episode before, we said, take your time and listen to different pieces of but the perspective that I pulled the most is when she asked us that question, what do you want your life to look like? And she said she wants us to really think about it. Define what success looks like for you. How does it, feel, focus on it. And she talked about, I mean, we all talk about gratitude, but she talked about focusing by making this little game like focus on the five favorite things that you like about your life yourself, your mate, your kids, your body, your job, focusing on those good things. And it elevates us to a different mindset overall to get us to where what do we want our life to look like? Yeah, that was just one of the big takeaways that I gathered from it. What about you, Sandy?
Sandy Kovach [00:03:28]:
Well, that was big too. And another side of that is if that's the positive, then the negative is something that we're putting way too much emphasis on as human beings. Our default, she pointed out, is to just kind of see the negative in our life or when 100 things are going right, we'll see the two that are going wrong and we'll focus all of our time and our attention on that and then we'll perpetuate that by complaining. And so I had a real life experience. Well, we all have real life experience that involves this all the time. But what I wanted to bring up is I was having now, we've all had our problems with customer service and various things. It can be our Internet, it can be airplane tickets, it can be 100 things. And this day and age, when you're on the phone with customer service, you can be on hold for a long time. And some of them are very good and others they're frazzled and they kind of show that in the tone of their voice. So you can take it many different ways. I had something go wrong with something with my computer and I called customer service and they said nobody's available. Or I got them on chat on my computer. We'll call you back. We'll call you back in an hour. So that was probably like 11:00 in the morning. I finally got a call back at 08:00 at night and by this time I'm watching the movie with my husband and I see the phone ring. Okay, I got to take this call and I won't go into all the boring details, but basically the person was maybe not exactly the right person to talk to. And he kind of had an attitude about my problem. And I thought, well, I could just be really rude back to him. I could go on Twitter and @ the company and say something - or all the things that maybe I would have done in the past. But instead I just went back to my movie and the next day I thought about what he said and he gave me enough information where I said, I'm going to either try to fix this myself or get my husband to fix it, or I'll call back, but I'm not going to give him a bad review. I mean, they even email you and say, how did this interaction. Go were you pleased with the results? And I was like, if I fill this in, it's not going to be good. So, yeah, in any way, I ended up figuring it out myself. I avoided a lot of negative things. I'm not saying that that'll always happen, but after what Christine said about complaining and just perpetuating the problem in our thoughts and in our words or going on social media, unless there's a concrete way that that's going to help you, it's not good.
Lanee Blaise [00:06:01]:
Not good. And it's very, like you said, counter to our natural instincts. We like to complain, we like to commiserate, and she's really challenging us to not do that. She's really challenging us to, again, focus on the great things and in your case, focus on your own resourcefulness that you were able to implement. Gosh she talked about another aspect, too, that really got me going crazy in a good way, I guess. And this speaks to what you just said, too, though, but moving in a different direction if you want different results. She said that if you want to go west and you're driving your car and your car is pointed east, you need to dang on, turn that car around so that you will be heading in the direction that you really want to be going to. If your back hurts, don't sit the way you've been sitting. Or move your body in a different direction. If your career is unfulfilling, begin taking steps to move in a different direction. Some of us just refuse to think different things, and we stay stuck in the unhappiness of life. We like to just stay in the complaining element and not do anything different. Sandy I have a friend who is not happy with her life. You say, Are you happy? No, I'm not happy with my life. But she does the same dang things every single day, okay? She eats the same foods that give her stomach ache, make her not the weight she wants. She drinks that same glass of wine every evening that she says kind of gives her a headache and makes her feel a little off. It's just one glass, but it's supposed to be relaxing and she can't wait to get it. But it doesn't feel right with her, which you and I have talked about that on other podcasts, how sometimes as we've gotten older, some things just don't agree with us anymore. She watches the same raggedy TV shows and have a bunch of stress and strife, and she wonders why she feels anxious and anxiety written. She won't read any books, period, but especially not positive books or faith filled books or anything, or listen to positive podcasts. She will not listen to Imagine Yourself podcast. She won't take time to be still before God. She won't even watch happy comedies. It's like, what are you doing? Have women fun. Watch some fun stuff. Have some friends who have no drama eat some vegetables, do some sit ups while watching TV, put off wine, try it for a week and see like, wow, actually makes me feel better not having it. Just do some things differently and think in a foundationally different way if you want to have a happy life or are you enjoying having a not happy life and complaining about it and doing the same things. I know we're creatures of habit, but sometimes we got to shake it up. I don't know if I'm talking to myself or her or everybody who's listening because I fall into some of these same things also. And this whole podcast is all about every time we get a guest, they tell us different ways to do things in better ways. We just need to try it.
Sandy Kovach [00:09:23]:
Yeah, I mean, not every way is everything is for everybody. But like you were saying, try something, give it a week. Like with the wine thing, that's a perfect example if it's giving you headaches. But hey, I love wine, too, and I don't drink it because of the way it makes me feel, but it took me a while to get there. But it sounds to me like she and we can't judge her because we don't know what's going on in her mind. Now, I take it this is a really good friend of yours. If you're so it's really frustrating. You want to see her happy, but yeah, you can only tell her so much. She's going to have to want to do it herself because there are certain things that people will tell me and it takes me a while to do it. But I think what you're getting at here is this is all of us. This isn't just your friend. It's not just you. It's not just me. It's human nature. I feel like we want to maybe blame something else or blame someone else or blame our situation. And in some cases that's true. In some cases you are in a crappy situation or your health is bad or there are certain circumstances that are beyond your control. But if you are able to say, what is my even if it's like there's a huge circle and 99% of it is circumstances, what's that one little thing that you can do? Maybe to inch it forward a little bit. That's the only thing I can think of. But usually there's a lot more than 1% of it. Usually it's like 80% us and 20% the circumstance, right?
Lanee Blaise [00:10:51]:
Yeah. And even you've got me thinking, too, about momentum. I mean, like you said, you do that 1% and then you do another percent, and then you start to build up a momentum, and then you really are flowing and vibing and moving in a direction that's going to help. Because again, little tiny tweaks we've talked about this a lot, too. Little tiny tweaks can do a lot. All I'm saying is change. There's a few people in this world who embrace change. They love change, they love to do new things, they love to meet new people. But there's a big chunk of people in this world who really push back against change.
Sandy Kovach [00:11:30]:
Yeah. Now some people, and maybe this is your friend too, it could be depressed or they might have anxiety and sometimes it takes a little professional intervention because it sounds like there's a lot of things going on. But I think for our daily lives and these little decisions that are actually can be very big decisions sometimes we need to take the responsibility for them. And I just think that's so much a part of it and how we think about things like okay, here's another example. My husband's redoing our bathrooms and he's been working on this one bathroom for a long time and he had a friend coming over to help him but his friend hasn't been able to come over so much so he doesn't really know a lot about tiling he knows enough. So he was cutting this one piece of tile which had kind of an odd fit. It really gave him a lot of problems. So he wanted to get like a whole wall done on a Saturday but instead all he got was this one tile done because he kept having to cutting it over and over. And I just joked with him, I said well that's your Saturday tile. And we just started laughing about it and he even wrote Saturday tile on the back of it. And sometimes you just have to think of it differently, have fun with it. Yeah.
Lanee Blaise [00:12:41]:
So I love the way both of you joined in and just said and now every time you go in that bathroom look at that, there it is, there's our little baby.
Sandy Kovach [00:12:50]:
It's a Saturday tile. And now things are going a lot better. He's used to it. So sometimes it's just how you think about it and even the way we think that's even in the Bible as a man thinks so he is from Proverbs. Something like that. So I guess it needs to start like Christine was saying in your thought life.
Lanee Blaise [00:13:12]:
It does. And even goodness, even me now, now I'm convicted that even faith, this friend, I need to rethink how I'm going to because you see me over here complaining, I am going to rethink. I'm just going to say okay, God bless her, I pray that she's able to be lifted from the spot that she is. Whether like you said, whether it's more professional help than just the little things that I've offered. Whether it's really just a miracle that God just touches and heals and blesses. Whether it is an incorporation of small little things. And all the way through this, now that I've gotten a chance to vent to everybody.
Sandy Kovach [00:14:00]:
Do you want me to edit this out?
Lanee Blaise [00:14:02]:
No, you can't keep it in here because this is one of those man in the mirror. Woman in the mirror. I'm actually having to take a look at myself here, make that change. Make that change like Michael Jackson, because I understand I have my own flaws. I'm not perfect. Maybe I can even use some of her examples, because for my particular ones, God is calling me to slow down, stop rushing, pay attention, get answers from within that he's showing me different little things in this world that I, too, have to move differently because I tend to just run around hectic. I was late onto this podcast, but not everything is urgent. You gave me grace. You let me get myself together, calm down, stuff like that. There are things that I need to get still, get quiet, work on also, and learn some of those godly ways to live my life. Even though it's different from what my friend has going on, we all have an area that we can work on in a beautiful, gradual, grace filled way. And I think that she has had her purpose for all of us. We can all take a look at what it is that we want to work on, that we want to change in the way that we think it. We can rethink, and the way that we do it, we can redo, and the way that we move, we can move differently.
Sandy Kovach [00:15:35]:
Yeah, I think Christine even brought up why do we always try to put ourselves in other people's shoes? I mean, in one way, that's being empathetic, and obviously this is a very good friend of yours, and it's just hurting you that you feel like she could do X, Y, and Z and change things. But I think Christine Meyer reminded us that we need to kind of stay in our own lane a lot of times. Not that you're not supposed to help people or give them advice, but yeah, I mean, that's a way to kind of work on our own issues. Like you were saying, one big issue that I have, I don't really have it as badly as I used to, but I would take offense to way too many things. I wouldn't say I was thin skinned, but I would say that especially faith, my marriage and things like that, I would read things into what my husband was saying, and he didn't really mean him like that at all, but I would be thinking the worst thing. So I think offense and the Bible also talks a lot about offense being a bad thing, too, and I think that goes right along with complaining. Now, there are sometimes where legitimately, you should be offended I'm not saying that ignore it all the time, but legitimately.
Lanee Blaise [00:16:42]:
You sometimes have to take action. And sometimes that action, depending on who it is, what it is, you might have to cut ties, but there's the ones like in the case with your husband and things like that. Christine taught us about that part with playing that game where you start to say, what are five things that I appreciate about my husband? How he makes my life easier and better, things that I like about him, even for the friend. I mean, this friend definitely has her problems, but when you need her, she is there and doesn't seem to complain about being there for any of us friends. I could think of five things to offset all of the complaining that I've done.
Sandy Kovach [00:17:25]:
Oh, very interesting. So we're having a therapy session kind of right here. Exactly. Yeah, exactly.
Lanee Blaise [00:17:31]:
To try to just let it out and practice what Christine Meyer was preaching to us. And like you said, practice what the Bible is preaching to us, too. And these things are meant for our good, for our good and for the good of others. And like I said, my conviction is that part about getting still and really learning and really picking up on some of the things that are being shared or divulged to me that I'm almost missing because I'm too busy rushing around crazy. And a lot of people that might be the case for them, too.
Sandy Kovach [00:18:05]:
Yeah. So whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. From Philippians 4:8. It's not always easy to do that, but we can practice. Yeah, you practice now in Christine's podcast, if you haven't heard that one. It's called can Thoughts Really Change Your Life? She does give us ways, like little tactics to control our thoughts. Now the games are part of it. Five favorite things. That's definitely a good game to kind of shift your perspective into being more grateful. But there are other ways, too. Well, that's cool. After our therapy session, do you feel better?
Lanee Blaise [00:18:46]:
I feel better. I feel better about the way that I want to approach my life and life with other people who sometimes get me frustrated, and I'm feeling less frustrated. Overall, I think we are implementing what we learned. We're always works in progress, which is another aspect to remind ourselves. I think I told you a long time ago, my little sister used to be in preschool, and they had the little category on the report card that said, we're still working on it.
Sandy Kovach [00:19:18]:
Yes. I love that you can think of that any time you make an error.
Lanee Blaise [00:19:24]:
We'Re still working on it. We are. We're not perfect. We're not meant to be perfect yet. We can still do things to enhance our lives and our quality of lives and our thoughts and our processes. So overall, the big answer is yes, our thoughts really can change our lives. And now we are equipped with different ways to actually do that. So imagine yourself equipped to think differently, be different, make different moves to make those changes that will make your life sweet and delicious as it was meant to be.
Sandy Kovach [00:20:05]:
Thanks so much for joining us. If you want to go back and listen to that episode we were talking about, can Your Thoughts Really Change Your Life? With coach and author Christine Meyer. That's the one, right before this, we'll also link it up in the show notes and we'll be sure to include our website too. So you can go back and look at some of the other encouraging things that we have posted and our podcasts and love it if you would connect with us on social media. We're on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. All our links are there too. Until next time when we have something new to imagine. Bless you and be well.