Be the Boss of Your Brain

By Teresa Amaral Beshwate, MPH

Lauren Bacall is quoted as saying “I am not a has-been. I am a will be.” It’s a powerful thought that the best days are still ahead. The great thing about our thoughts is that we get to choose them – every single one of them.

Paying close attention to your thoughts is a great habit. Thoughts can be sneaky, along the lines of, “It’s such a nice day….looking forward to that coffee date…..why am I so lazy…..got to feed the dog…..if only I weren’t so dumb/fat/insert other insult…..oh look at the time, I need to get ready…..” So many thoughts can practically go unnoticed unless we make an effort at eavesdropping. It helps to write down your thoughts on paper.

What thoughts do you observe happening in your mind? Do you think that the best days have already passed? It’s too late? That you’re not good enough, deserving enough or smart enough? These are certainly thoughts that you can choose, but how well do they serve you? Feelings are a product of our thoughts, so why choose thoughts that make you feel bad, insecure or unworthy?

Said differently, every grumpy mood, sad day and insecure moment can be traced back to the thoughts we are thinking.

Not to mention, feelings prompt action, so in this case, the resulting actions very likely would not serve you. Ultimately actions become the results that we create in our lives – good and bad. In this case, those results will only reinforce the original thoughts. It’s a downward spiral.

Since thoughts are 100% our choice, why not be the boss of our brains and choose thoughts that do serve us? Yes, it may feel contrived, but it’s worth a try – our feelings, our actions and the results we create in our lives have the potential to dramatically shift, and then the best days will indeed be still ahead.  

Teresa Beshwate