I remember when I was first learning about NLP and hypnosis.
Things like “focus on what you want, instead of what you don’t want.”
There’s a common idea that suggestions shouldn’t contain negatives, for this specific reason.
Like you tell somebody not to do something, and that “thing” they aren’t supposed to do is going to be in the forefront of their minds. Which will give them an impulse to do it.
This was driven home for me in a very real way when I was watching a friend’s daughter, as she was just learning to walk around, and was clearly appreciating her new found sense of movement.
She had climbed up on a footstool, and was enjoying the height, and the feeling of accomplishment.
Suddenly her dad ruined everything. Not intentionally of course, but often times our intentions lead to behaviors that create the opposite of what we’d intended.
In this particular case, my friend said, “Be careful, don’t fall off!”
And as soon as he said that, her young face turned from excitement and accomplishment to fear, anxiety, and worry. Her smile vanished, her eyes suddenly looked around with caution, luckily, she carefully got down.
If we were to go back through our lives and somehow be able to witness all these instances, I’m sure we’d find hundreds, if not thousands of them.
We using our childlike gifts of curiosity, discovery, learning and improvement suddenly have our brains hijacked by the worries and fears of those adults around us.
Pretty soon we start to believe those fears are ours.
But they’re not.
Luckily, the way to escape this trap is simple. Just change what you focus on.
Instead of focusing on what you don’t want, spend more mental effort focusing on what you do want.
You think tightrope walkers focus on the vast space beneath them? No way.
They just look straight ahead, and imagine they’re walking over a 1 foot drop onto soft grass.
You can do the same. Now, this WILL take some consistent practice. Daily journaling will help.
Just choose something, anything, something specific that you want, and focus on that.
Focus on standing up, climbing higher, and enjoying it.
No matter what.
This can help: