Okay, so today I have decided to pick a quote from a book and comment on it. I have chosen Wayne Dyer’s “Your Erroneous Zones,” which I “randomly” opened up. Here’s the quote I found:
Some Strategies for Freeing Yourself from the Past and Eliminating Your Vexing I’ms
Leaving the past behind involves taking risks. You have become accustomed to your self-definitions. In many cases they function as a support system in your daily life. Some specific strategies for eliminating those I’ms include:
–Eliminating I’m wherever you can. Substitute with such sentences as, “Until today I’ve chosen to be that way,” or “I used to label myself…”
–Announce to those close to you that you are going to work at eliminating some of your I’ms. Decide which are most important to eliminate and ask them to remind you whenever you haul them out.
–Set behavioral goals to act differently than you’ve ever done before. For example, if you consider yourself shy, introduce yourself to one person who you might otherwise have avoided.“Your Erroneous Zones,” by Wayne Dyer. p85
So here, Dyer is talking about how people tend to label themselves, usually to their detriment. These “I’ms” are statements such as “I’m shy,” or “I’m lousy with money,” or “I’m no good at learning languages.” In the process of making such pronouncements, which people then tend to repeat ad nauseam, people can trap themselves in a limiting sense of self.
They may not realize they have done this, but these “I’ms” can keep them stuck in behaviors that don’t serve them. They might even wish to change. The problem is, if you declare what you are, using the words “I am,” you are activating a powerful force, the Law of Attraction, which will gradually shape you into what you believe yourself to be.
When people continue to think thoughts for a long time–whether positive or negative–they create a powerful momentum, as well as a thought habit, that can be difficult to shake. I have found that it can take persistence, vigilant awareness, and dogged commitment… yet it can be done!
We have all made these nasty I’m statements! Yes, I did this way too many times. Yet reading passages like this from Dyer has really helped me. Because I know how powerful my word is, I have consciously have “softened” my statements about myself, or learned ways that are more positive to state current conditions that might not be ideal.
Here are a few examples that I use:
- Instead of saying “I’m not good at [insert activity here]” you can say, “I haven’t learned to do that yet” or “That seems a bit scary, it’s a good thing I’m good at learning new things.”
- Instead of making “always” or ” never” statements about yourself, you can say, “sometimes” or “in the past.” For example, rather than saying, “I always mess up when I try something new,” you can say, “In the past, I sometimes messed up. It was very embarrassing. But sometimes I have really gotten good at new things.” In other words, take advantage of the concept of time by talking about things in a way that puts unwanted things and behaviors in the past. “I used to be afraid, but these days I act with more and more courage.”
- Instead of making condemnatory pronouncements about your personality–such as “I am shy,” or “I’m so clumsy”– try to reframe statements in a way that is specific, time-bound, and leaves hope for something new. “In the past, sometimes I didn’t speak up when I wanted to. It didn’t feel good, so now I always look for ways to express myself.” Framing it “in the past” usually helps because it leaves hope that the future will be different. “Sometimes, I felt really clumsy. This sucked. So now I always pay as much attention as I can when I walk.”
- Take charge of your power of visualization and affirmation, and intend what you want. Abraham talks about pivoting, which means that you can always focus on what you want no matter what is going on: “I might feel a little small and scared right now, but I want to feel great. I want to feel expansive and overjoyed, and I want to feel powerful!” This can help your thoughts start in a positive direction.
I hope you found this interesting! This is the first time I’ve used this exact format for these posts: the randomly chosen writing prompt. I may use this again!