He said she said, she said he said.
We heard them say, we thought they said;
they said they said, we heard they said,
they said they meant, we thought they thought;
they said he said, he said they heard,
we heard she said she heard he said,
they said we said, we said we heard they said.
We thought they said…..
…..words are the drama of life.
We might not totally be in control of what we hear or where we hear what we hear, but for sure we are each in control of what we think about. The problem is not usually what was said, but what we choose to think about.
Speech / spoken words have energy. Positive speech / words build relationships and bring people together because they have positive energy. Negative speech / words break people and relationships apart because of negative energy. The choice to speak positive words instead of negative words is one we all have to make. Unfortunately, a lot of people choose not to.
In this piece, I’ll share some tips on healthy happy thinking.
IGNORE ZONE, some people just have to be ignored:
Usually, the thoughts we sit and ruminate over are the result of several wholesome and unwholesome words we have heard, either recently or over time, from people who could be either total strangers, recent acquaintances, or close friends and family. Most times it is the people close to you that say things that shake you up / down, mostly emotionally, mentally and even spiritually.
It’s a cold world out there, and this is a cold statement to make, but some people just have to be ignored, regardless of who they are. In fact to put it rightly, you need to identify the people in your life whose words don’t contribute to your upward climb, and zone them into an ‘ignore zone’. Consciously and intentionally ignore them. This is a brute force approach, but your happiness is more important than whatever some people have to say.
LEARN TO HEAR BUT NOT LISTEN
Assuming a banter of words between you and I: there are three things to consider: what you said, what I heard, and what I think about what you said. The reverse: what I said, what you heard and what you think about what I said….. is also true.
What you say: You are the owner of your mouth, thank God you aren’t dumb. Thank Him for the gift of speech. If you have a mouth, say something. In fact, everybody can talk: you can talk, I can talk, anyone can say what he / she wants to say; freedom of speech is a fundamental human right. You can talk to me or to him or to her, or to anybody. It is a free world.
What I hear: what I hear is nothing more or less than exactly what you say/have said. I will not add to what you have said and will not remove from it. Your words are purely statements, and everyone is allowed to make a statement. I am too busy to confirm they are / aren’t facts. If they aren’t facts, then you just told a blatant lie. If what you say to me is a fact, congratulations for coming on-board. The fact was already a fact before you made your observation, so you don’t get the credit.
What I think: the only reason why I would think about what you say is if it moves me forward from where I am to where I need to be; else your statement is discarded as soon as I hear it. I cannot and will not evaluate / re-evaluate myself on the basis of whatever you say, regardless of whether it is a commendation or criticism.
CHOOSE YOUR TEAM WISELY
Just like in a soccer team, the coach is only allowed to choose 11-players for his team regardless of how many excellent players there are on the pitch. He has to make decisions, choose some players and let the others go. During a match he might decide to field some players while others are benched. In fact, a player could be benched throughout the season. At the end of the season, he might choose to trade, sell off some of his players and even buy new ones. At any point in time the coach is looking for players that can add value to his team.
Your team are the people around you consciously most of your daily 24-hours. Briefly, these could be:
1) your family members (near & far away);
2) your unavoidable colleagues at work (at least for 8-hours);
3) your friends: the physical ones you can meet/talk with regularly,
4) your friends: the remote ones you talk with once in awhile
5) your friends: the social ones you hang out with ‘online’;
6) and a bunch of others.
Of the above list, it is hard to ignore #1 to #3. It is hardest to ignore#1 because we each come from somewhere, a family. The past doesn’t matter, the challenge is if members of your present family are contributing happy thoughts to your life through their words, actions and in-actions. Most times, the emotional wounds that hurt us most are inflicted by people close to us.
It becomes a problem when you need to let go of someone close to you, someone who at one time in the past was a great part of your life. The ability to know when to let people into and out of of your life is important in making sure your thoughts are not a function of people who shouldn’t be in your life.
DONT KEEP COMPANY WITH YOUR COMPETITION
Your circle of friends, admirers, advisers, encouragers, critics, and the regular people should be people who are better than you and not anybody else.
Members of your competition could flatter you, others would rubbish you out of jealousy. Their words could be heavy on you because you see each other as competition. In a group with your competition, it is easy to develop a superiority or inferiority complex. It is easy to loose focus, and call it quits when you see your competition succeeding where you are obviously failing. It is easy to think you are nothing and falling behind your competition.
Change the company of people you keep. Find people who have arrived at and are moving beyond where you want to be, people who have achieved what you are trying to achieve. Request and accept such as your mentors. The effect of this move is always positive, for example:
1) when those who are ahead of you criticize you, you know you have not done well and when they commend you, you know you are making progress.
2) The opportunity of learning, learning fast and making less mistakes: you get to learn from people who have been there, done that, might have failed but have since succeeded. You are easily guided away from making the same mistakes your mentors made when they were in your level.
3) Respect: your former competition will respect you when they see you keeping company the big boys.
There is so much happiness in the world that neither you nor anyone should be sad. What I have observed is that people find whatever they look for in life. A quick example is “the Internet”. Some years ago, “the Internet”, to me was a big mystery, like some black hole that has no explanation. I remember sitting in a youth seminar a couple of years ago where the speaker talked about the evils of the Internet. I would rather not list them here as they are of no interest. I remember leaving that seminar feeling more curious about finding out the details of these evils. The only good thing the speaker said about the Internet is that it is good for research.
Years later, I realized that what you search for on the Internet is what you will get, and that there are so many good things I can read, learn, get introduced to on the same Internet. I learned that I can also contribute good content, which could be helpful to someone else in another part of the world. I have since been better informed as I read several books, practiced tutorials on computer-techy subjects which are of benefit to me today….. subjects which I was never taught in school. I read about how to spot evil and malicious websites and avoid them. Looking back, these are the positive informations the seminar speaker should have passed across years ago.
If you look for happy people, they are everywhere. If you look for people who can make you happy or contribute to your happy-level, they are everywhere. Happiness abounds in everything around you. There is a laugh lurking behind everything. If you look for happy thoughts, you will find too many of them to handle. If you look for the happy side of life, you will surely find it. Even if some members of ‘your team’ make conscious efforts to pollute your thoughts & pull you down, you can turn the table around and make it an opportunity to be happy.