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I must open up this piece of writing with a statement to let you the reader know of my academical status and also make you aware of my non formal training. I am not a councillor, a physiologist nor a psychiatrist. This piece is based on my opinion, my experience and work with all forms of people from businessmen/women, leadership groups, teams, individuals and athletes. And most definitely my biggest client has been myself.
As humans we have an incredible ability to have thoughts. We just need to think of something and the thought or the vision appears inside of us with some great detail, colour, sounds and smells. An added ability also to this is we can have thoughts about our thoughts. Which can lead us down a very terrible and negative thought process. An example of what I am talking about is such;
I can think about a beautiful woman, or I might have a thought of a picture which I saw. I then can have a thought about this asking myself the question why I am thinking of this, there is something wrong with me, I am not normal. We can flood ourselves with questions asking why and how come I am thinking about something. We take a baseball bat to ourselves and become ever so critical of ourselves and thoughts. At times even though it was just a thought we can play out in our head that we actually did what was in our thoughts and punish ourselves for merely just doing a very simple natural function – WE THOUGHT.
How did we become so programmed and conditioned to be so terrible to ourselves? There are many aspects and reasons for this stemming from childhood, teenage years, early adulthood, a bad relationship or marriage and many many other factors.
One of these many factors which lead us to having negative and often punishing thoughts of ourselves to such a point where it has been seen and known to almost cripple a person. Taking away his power and strength from doing everyday activities is the new medium of various platforms of social media. How can such platforms have such influential affect on our thoughts? It’s just a social media page? There is nothing really sinister in looking at such platforms, unless there is a personal attack made on an individual leading to bullying but mostly and majority of the time it is filled with mostly beautiful and uplifting photo’s, video’s and comments.
We can look through these different platforms and see our friend having an incredible time at the beach, a couple you know posting how happy they are with photos of smiles and laughter. A new car a friend just bought. A photo of someone you know in a bikini looking great. OMG, they got married and now they have a baby. He/she is my world it reads. Their child got an A in English. Look where they went on holidays, it’s beautiful weather where they are.
What we are starting to believe and feeding ourselves, but more importantly conditioning our mind is that everyone else has a beautiful peaceful life. They have a great home life with an extraordinary house on the hills where it never rains in that particular spot. As they leave home to go to their very world changing job, their partner awaits at the door with a smile and a hug and kiss to send them off and a little tear swelling in the eye as they say goodbye.
This is what we condition ourselves to believing. We become very judgemental and critical about our every single thought, action and behaviour. Critical about why I do not have anything as such perfect as what I see and hear. Never are you enough and never will you reach such great status as what you see on these.
I found this to be a reality with an athlete I have been working with. He constantly brought up the scenario of other athletes posting their achievements on social media and he believed that he was not good enough or more importantly PERFECT enough. He criticised anything that he did whether it was good. If it was good, it was never good enough. He should have done this or that. Constantly comparing himself to a world that does not exist. A world of still photos and sterile feelings and emotions.
An individual is such as the word indicates, they are an individual. With their own thoughts, feelings and emotions. We all have our flaws. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses. My suggestion in all of this is not to cut yourself off from any social media or social functions. But understand social media for what it is. Do not let this be a platform for you to compare yourself to, compare your beautiful and incredible life, compare your work or your athletic performance on. And I ask you if anything that you take from this do not let it dictate to you on how you should think, act and behave as a person. You are truly greater than that. These platforms are just a still moment in a lifetime in which someone feels the need to share how supposedly happy or successful they are. It has nothing to do with you or who you are. Again, more importantly it has nothing to do with how great you can be and will be.
The only thing in life that can stop you from having a great life is you.
Email: John.firstname.lastname@example.org Web: neptune