One of my favourite Jim Kwik quotes is this:
‘Your mind is always eavesdropping on your self-talk.’
I just love this.
Thinking about your thoughts in this way – as something that our minds might eavesdrop on, absorb, react to – is really quite empowering.
For one, it implies that your mind and negative self-talk come from two different places; something which I think we often forget when we’re too invested in the thoughts. Remembering this allows us to separate our identity from those thoughts; to see that negative chatter for what it really is – faulty programming or extreme emotions – rather than believing these thoughts to be reality.
To me, this is immediately empowering. You’re no longer the victim of your thoughts, but the manager of them.
In fact, maybe it’s the teacher in me, but this quote allows me to think of my brain as a student.
A student who is always listening, looking, noticing.
A student who soaks up everything that’s said.
A student who acts on your teaching, building it into their daily words, beliefs and behaviours.
If I think of my brain in this way, I’m encouraged to be much more discriminating as to what I do with my thoughts; whether I allow them inside for a cup of tea and a biscuit or I slam the door in their face upon arrival.
Basically, if my mind is eavesdropping on my thoughts, then I want the most of what it hears to be inspiring, supportive, realistic and kind.
Ask yourself: What’s my mind absorbing, day after day? How does it take on board and apply these thoughts? How are my thoughts, beliefs, actions and reaction affected as a result? What might be better to hear instead?