The power of thoughts.

Although somewhat exaggerated because of its absolute tone, where's a will there's way' holds a great deal of truth. Athletes know that beating a record is not a matter of mere physical training, but of nourishing the mind and thought. Likewise, to a great extent, the behaviour we adopt, the emotional states we experience, and even the illnesses we suffer from fine their root in thought and thinking.

The chart below shows the effects of thought, how begin, and the results to which they lead. Environment (people, places, circumstances…), personality (optimism, suspiciousness, aggressiveness…), together with memories and the past. People process them at will, and these thoughts lead them to an eventual reaction that may become of great significance to their lives.

Mental content and its processing can be the origin of quite opposite consequences (see the chart again).

Thoughts and behavior
With the exception of automatic reactions or repetitive acts, behaviors find their root in the preceding thoughts.
Consider these three cases:
• Before going to time share agency, Mark never thought he would end up buying property. However the environment, the kindness of the salespersons, the beautiful images of the apartment, the attractive financial plant, encouraged him to consider the options. Once at home, Mark reflected on the offer, fantasised on the exotic holidays he would be enjoying along with the idea of selling the property or passing it on to his children and grandchildren. He signed the contract two day later.

• Elaine went out for some refreshments together with two old girlfriends from high school. They thoroughly enjoyed talking about endless memories from the past as well as present life. Once at home, Elaine contrasted her life with that or her friends. She pondered the details, went over the conversation, and concluded that her friends were luckier than herself. Soon she taken by strong feeling of sadness, mixed with disappointment about her owns accomplishment. This mood stayed with Elaine for several days.

• Victoria enjoying a good relationship with everyone. However, a few months back, she had had a serious confrontation with her brother and they stop talking to each other. She refused to reconcile as she had been deeply hurt by her brother’s offence. When, in her mind she rehearsed the moment of the row, she experienced anger, her heart beat wildly and at times she felt nauseous.

The three cases above show a clear connection between thought and behaviour (or mood). What would have happened if Mark, Elaine, and Victoria had changed the course of their thought? Their conduct would have probably been very different!
In the end, everyone is in charge of their own thought. And, therefore, everybody can, with more or less difficulty, harbour, channel, elaborate, reduce their thoughts.

Thoughts can lead….
From… ----------------- To…
.. reconciliation ------------> .. aggressions
.. restitution --------------> .. theft
.. love -------------------> .. hate
.. peace and confidence ----> .. anxiety
.. happiness -------------> .. sadness
.. a bright smile --------------> .. a headache
.. general well-being ------------> .. sweat and palpitations
.. energy to work -------------> .. back ache

The origins and influence of thoughts

.Situations -------------------- . Behavior
.Personality ----Thoughts---- . Mood
.Past --------------------------- . Physical reactions

Positive thinking

Positive thinking result

Why is there so much variation in the way person react? Why do similar circumstances bring about different reaction? To great extent, this is due to the fact that different persons perceive and process information in vary different ways. Markus gets upset when it rain: ‘Rain makes me nervous; umbrella are a nuisance, traffic slow down, people slip and hurt themselves…’ On the other hand, Lucy assesses the fact differently: ‘I like the smell of wet soil, rain cleans the air, birds are happier, and plants and flowers grow.’ Their respective attitudes touch their work, family, friend, and everyday events. Are result, Markus experiences the bitter side of think and Lucy enjoys the sweetness of life.

Healthy and optimistic thinking:

* Causes good mood.

• Helps maintain optimal social interactions.
• Increases school achievement and work performance.
• Blocks anxiety.
• Enhances self-esteem.
• Reduces pain and other somatic symptoms.
• Strengthens the immune system.

* Helps patients recover from illness and from surgical treatments.

How to think positively

To reject negative thoughts and substitute them with alternative positive options constitutes a good way to option a positive thinking style. Pessimistic thoughts tend to take over the person automatically and without and following any logical pattern. It is therefore important to learn to identify such thoughts and to change the thinking style (see Self-help).

Positive thinking must be an ongoing, permanent style of mental activity. It should also extend to all life aspects. The following areas need consideration:

• Positive thinking about oneself. Try and avoid building your self concept by comparing your self with TV star and individuals from public life. They all portray unreal images. Accept your limitation and do something to improve these. Above all, do not forget to underline your values and abilities. Stop and reject self-deprecating thoughts.
• Positive thinking about the past. The past cannot be change. Accept it even thought it may contain unpleasant events. But do not blame the past for your present difficulties. That is useless. Never get obsessed with a disagreeable past. And as far as positive events and anecdotes, remember them and enjoy them. Your attitude will improve and turn more positive.
• Positive thinking about the future. The future can be changed. Your attitude today affects tomorrow events. When you think with confidence and hope about tomorrow, you are increasing the probability of a much more successful future. And if something negative approaches, make plans now to prevent it instead of becoming anxious.
• Positive thinking about people and the environment. Put on your ‘rose-colored glasses’ and look around. Not everything is prefect, but there are beautiful thing and pleasant experiences. Do not grow suspicious of other people. Trust them and respect them. Try to understand the problems of other. Help them and you will see how your attitude becomes sweeter.

Many are dominated by irrational beliefs ideas without logical sense that are able to cause unhappiness and disorders. For example:
• ‘We are permanently surrounded by dangers and risks; it is natural to always feel worried and fearful.’
• ‘Unhappy and unfortunate people can do nothing to improve their situations.’
• ‘In order for me to be happy and to live in peace with myself, I must be love d and receive approval from everyone who knows me.’
• ‘There is always a prefect solution to every problem and if that solution is not realised, disastrous consequences follow.’

The above statements are fallacies and those living by
them may experience psychological pain and event unhappiness. Make every effort to identify and analyse your favourite irrational beliefs. Reason logically in order to reject these thoughts and accept better alternative.

Hope as factor in good thinking

Filling our mind with spiritual thoughts and themes can be a safe way to attain mental peace. A peaceful conscience
and a serene mind bring about an optimal mood. Try prying to God and tell him of your painful experiences.
Trust in God.
He will take care of you.

  Put Wings on Your Dreams

We Need Dreams

Dreams are important. Not the dreams you have when sleeping. I'm talking about the dreams you have for your future -- the dreams that keep you going -- the dreams that make each day worth living.

Dreams Aren't Enough

As important as dreams are, they arent enough. Why? Dreams don't take you where you want to go. A dream needs wings -- to become a tangible vision -- a passion that will take you where you REALLY want to be.

Bethany Hamilton lives in Hawaii -- her passion is surfing -- her dream is to become a professional surfer. She spends every available minute in the water, even home-schooling so she can have more time to pursue her vision. 

At 8 years of age she entered her first major competition taking the division championships that year. Bethany's dream had become her passion -- a tangible vision.

When Your Vision Is Attacked

Bethany's vision was viciously attacked on Halloween morning, 2003, when she was 13 years old. Bethany was lying on her board -- left arm dangling in the cool water.

She remembers a flash of gray, pressure, and a couple fast tugs. She also remembers watching the jaws of a 15-foot tiger shark cover the top of her board and her left arm.

The shark was gone as fast as it appeared. So was her arm.

What It Takes To Keep Your Vision Alive

Fast thinking friends and surgery saved Bethany's life. Everyone -- including Bethany -- believed her surfing days were over. But within a week her vision returned -- she rejected the fear and thoughts of defeat.

Less than 30 days after the attack Bethany was back in the water. Her family and friends were there to cheer her on.

Her first attempts were failures. She struggled to push herself up with

one arm and keep her balance. Her fear was that her dream would die in the water that day -- the shark victorious after all. Bethany pushed down her fears, gritted her teeth, and kept trying. And then it happened.

Tears rolled down her face -- the crowd cheered -- she caught her first wave and rode it in.

The Dream Takes Wing

Only months after the vicious attack, Bethany amazed thousands by achieving the unimaginable -- taking 5th at the 2004 National Scholastic Surfing Association Nationals Championships. In September she struck
again, winning the Open Women's Division of the NSSA's Hawaiian conference season opener. Having placed in the finals of the National Surfing Championships Bethany has secured a spot on USA's National Surfing Team. She has truly conquered her fears!

Five Ways To Put Wings On Your Dreams Bethany's story shows how to put
wings on your dreams:

1) Your dream must become your passion -- a tangible vision.

2) Everything you do needs to fuel your vision.

3) When your dream is attacked, face the adversity squarely and choose to overcome it with whatever it takes -- face your fears and do it anyway!

4) Make necessary adjustments -- regain your balance -- and keep your eyes on your goal.

5) Accept help when it comes -- with grace and gratitude -- let it fuel your vision.

From Dream to Vision to Reality

Bethany's vision overcomes her fear of sharks and her continued nightmares. Her story teaches how to create dreams with wings that push you toward your life-goals. Follow her example and your dreams will become
reality, too. 

Terima kasih!

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