Norton: Negative thoughts got you down? Change the soundtrack in your head (column)
May 6, 2018
So, the other day I was listening to one of my favorite radio stations as I was driving to an early appointment. Loaded up with some coffee and great music, I was on my way to a great start to the day. I was actually feeling like they were playing all of my favorite songs; it was awesome.
And then they played a song, one of those songs that just gets stuck in your head all day long.
Have you ever been there? Maybe it happened to you today while you were getting ready for work or driving to the office or just hanging around the house. You know the songs, right?
Sometimes it is one of our favorite songs, and then other times, it's a silly song or tune, or even just the chorus to a song, and it gets planted in our brain. And sometimes it is a person we run into and he or she is singing it and we just can't erase it from our ears.
The only way we can stop it is by changing the soundtrack that is playing in our head. And life can be the same way, too, can't it?
There are days, weeks, months or longer where we get stuck listening to our own talk track in our heads. Sometimes it's a good and positive talk track, something that we play over and over again as we focus in on the pursuit of our goals and dreams.
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There is so much evidence around the power of positive self-talk or listening to positive and motivational material or reading books, blogs and articles that give us great advice and powerful direction, that I highly encourage you to give it a shot if you haven't tried it yet.
The other side of that and the problem is that sometimes we get so caught up in our own negative self-talk that we get focused on all of the things that are going wrong in our lives.
That soundtrack keeps playing and, unless we change the soundtrack, will completely derail us from where we are trying to go.
And what's worse is when someone else is singing that negative tune for us, whispering words of discouragement into our ears and sharing thoughts of their own failures. They try to guard us from their own worries, fears and doubts.
And now their soundtrack is stuck playing in our head instead of our own positive soundtrack.
It is stuck there unless we change the soundtrack.
What is it you are trying to do? Where is it you want to be? What are things that you want to have in this life? The only way to achieve each one is to erase and block the source of the bad and negative information we are allowing to influence the way we see ourselves, how we behave and our attitude toward life.
Zig Ziglar said it this way, "If you don't like who you are, where you are or what you are, you can change who you are, where you are and what you are by changing what goes into your mind."
This is consistent with the other awesome saying, "You put the good stuff in, you get the good stuff out."
So how about you? Is there a song stuck in your head? Is it a good one, a great one that has you motivated and excited? Or is there a negative talk track going on and you need to change the soundtrack?
Either way, I look forward to hearing your story at email@example.com. And when we can learn to put the "good stuff in," it really will be a better-than-good week.
Michael Norton is the president of the Zig Ziglar Corporate Training Solutions Team, a strategic consultant, business and personal coach and motivational speaker. He writes a weekly motivational column for the Vail Daily.