Fork Off, My Friend!Nov 01, 2021
Our brains are made up of I don't know how many neuropathways going every which way. Some of those pathways run very deep. Some are super helpful and positive and some are unhelpful and destructive.
So I teach my clients to Fork Off.
Often when a circumstance occurs, we automatically have a thought->feeling->behavior response to it. That's indicative of a deep neuropathway.
Example: I tell my kid to do something and he does not respond in any way. That's the circumstance. (And yes, this one probably happens to all parents everywhere.) I could be stuck in a pattern of immediately having a thought along the lines of:
"Nobody ever listens to me! It's like I'm invisible to these people!"
"He does not respect me at all! What will become of him if he doesn't learn to respect people in authority?"
"I'm so sick of this. I can't handle any more!"
Thoughts like these will trigger us to yell, berate, fly of the handle, crawl into the leftover Halloween candy or let a little more acerbic bitterness make a home in our heart.
But they're just thoughts.
And not all of our thoughts are true.
And not all of our thoughts are helpful.
But all of our thoughts can be challenged will better, truer thoughts. You've got to take that circumstance and Fork Off from your usual way of thinking about it and reacting to it. Make your brain create a fork by intentionally thinking thoughts that are more helpful. Plan it out. PLAN what you will THINK instead. You might have to double down on the work it takes to change your brain. But change your brain and you'll change your life.
Instead of, "Nobody ever listens to me! It's like I'm invisible to these people!" Consider thinking:
"He must be deep in thought. Maybe he didn't even hear me."
Instead of, "He does not respect me at all! What will become of him if he doesn't learn to respect people in authority?" Try:
"I know he loves me but no one enjoys taking out the garbage so maybe he's hoping I'll give up. I won't give up. I will be a gentle, firm presence in his life."
Instead of, "I'm so sick of this. I can't handle any more!"
"I AM tired of this but I can and will handle everything these kids ever throw my way. I am committed to discipling them now and all the way into adulthood. Parenting is a marathon and I'm in it for the long haul."
Where is your brain sabotaging the way you want to show up in life?
Perhaps it's time to Fork Off, My Friend!
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