How to Rewrite Your Story to Live the Life of Your Hopes & Dreams
“If you change the way you tell your own story, you can change the color and create a life in technicolor.” ~ Isabel Allende
The story began with a shy, timid woman dreaming of being a princess. In the end, she became a Queen. If only life was that simple…flipping a few pages takes you from dreaming to achieving. But we’re stuck with the story we’re born with, right? NOT AT ALL! You can rewrite your story if you skillfully employ the secret weapon I’m going to reveal to you.
No, we’re not venturing into the realms of fantasy or talking about secret potions, powers or tricks that you have to slay dragons to discover. You already have this secret weapon at your disposal. You may not have thought of it as a weapon, though. And that’s the secret…changing how you think about a powerful skill you already possess.
What is your innate power to rewrite your story? It’s changing how you quickly fit each new situation into your perceived scope of capabilities. Yes, it’s changing how you think!
Because of past experiences, your brain creates shortcuts to protect yourself:
Dog bit me — I must avoid all dogs
Best friend disappointed me — I can’t trust anyone, so I’m not revealing how I truly feel.
I tried — I failed — I can’t do it.
No — I’m afraid — I’m too old.
No one understands — my life is harder than anyone else’s.
If I ignore it, it will go away.
That’s just not me.
What you tell yourself is what you believe, even if those thoughts are based on who you were in the past, not on the reality of where you are and who you are today. Too often these shortcuts trap and blind you to another, better way of being.
It’s like the story of the monkey trap. You place a yummy treat in a gourd or bottle that has a small opening. The monkey reaches in and grabs the treat, but can’t pull its paw out because the clenched fist is too big to fit through the hole. To escape, all the monkey has to do is release the treat. When the monkey holds on too long, the hunters grab them.
Are you giving up your freedom, hopes and dreams because you’re holding on to things too long?
Engage your superpower
To turn your thoughts into a powerful, secret weapon, slow down, engage your curiosity, ask yourself questions like “why not?” and “who says?”, examine the situation from all sides, and make a reasoned decision.
Rewrite your story — Stepping Forward into the life you dream of…
Just as Alice in Wonderland stepped through the looking glass, so we must peer into the mirror to see ourselves for what and who we really are today. Only then will we be able to step through the glass wall we’ve imposed upon ourselves and find our wonderland beyond. Here’s how:
Become mindfully aware of your habits, routines, rituals, processes, systems for life. We all have automatic ways of coping. Find your autopilot and disengage it.
For example: If your go-to behavior when stressed is to eat a quart of ice cream, acknowledge it, examine how it makes you feel in the long term, and make a conscious choice to handle stress differently. I often practice deep breathing with calming essential oils. You might give that a try.
Make your new decisions stick. Because you’ve chosen to substitute healthful behaviors for unhealthy ones, grow to love your new way of being!
For example, cutting down on ice cream makes you feel more energetic. With the new energy, engage in another activity that you love, like bicycling in the park. As you tone muscles, buy new outfits that remind you of how great your “less ice cream in my life” decision is. Can you see how each decision writes a new chapter in your story? You’re eating better, exercising more, dressing for success. Keep it up, you’re doing great!
Embrace mindful self-reflection. When we don’t like something, we want to change it. However, when we don’t like ourselves, we don’t like to think. We’d rather ignore it than feel the misery of self-condemnation. Begin shifting this dilemma by engaging gratitude and looking for positives.
For example: You bicycled until the rain came. Now you’re stuck indoors. However, your body and mind has shown you that they thrive on activity and self-love. It made you feel light and happy. It’s time to engage your flexibility and gratitude. First, imagine a worst case scenario — you’re paralyzed and can’t move. Feel grateful for what you can do…and do more of it. Having a Plan B is crucial to your ability to rewrite your story.
Don’t go it alone. COVID 19 showed us that we need companionship. Find people who support and nurture your new habits.
For example, make a commitment with a buddy, that rain or shine you’re going to meet in the park at noon to bicycle or walk. Have fun. Talk and laugh. This is a very natural and organic way to build a support system that helps you rewrite your story.
Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Staying in your comfort zone is like swimming in a stagnant pond that has no fresh water flowing into it. Ick! We need new experiences to refresh and challenge us. Yes this includes taking risks!
Will you have a happy ever after ending to your story? Time will tell. I’d love to help you rewrite your story: Once upon a time, there was a woman named, (insert your name). She dreamed of (insert your dream) and she didn’t wait for life to happen. She went out and made it happen. Her journey began by downloading an Introduction to The Stepping Forward Program.
Are you ready to get your copy? Download it today.