Be. U. TY Podcast is Here! The podcast that will help you unveil your authentic self so you can show the world who you are confidently. In today’s episode, our host Adozie Duffy talks about the difference between your thoughts and your circumstances, and some useful ways to think about it all, so that you can be one step ahead of yourself and not fall into the trap of getting stuck in certain areas of your life.
“You have gone your whole life up until now, thinking that the things your brain gave to you were 100% true and factual and you’ve gone your whole life, never, or at the most. very rarely, questioning the things your brain is offering to you.”
“More often than not, you will be having a thought that you believe is a circumstance, because we are hardwired to just believe that our brains are telling us the truth that they are just like, observing the truth when instead they’re creating a perspective.”
“When we think our circumstances are true, we don’t even realize how jaded they are from the beginning, we don’t even realize that, and framing it in this way we’re basically setting ourselves up.”
“Most of us believe that in order to be productive or get things done, we tend to only focus on the negatives, and I’m trying to basically say that there is a different way. It’s possible to fix and solve our problems from a positive or just neutral position.”
What to watch for:
01:25 – Thinking that the things your brain gave to you were 100% true
03:58 – Becoming aware of a thought or a belief that we have to be able to change it
04:53 – How can we do a better job of differentiating between our thoughts and our circumstances
06:59 – Story about one of my clients
09:35 – There are positive ways to solve are problems
11:54 – Come up with some intentional models so that you could start to change your perspective
12:31 – The Model
20:00 – Fix the circumstance to fix the feeling
Connect with Adozie
I wanted to come on here today & clarify something that I think I will need to clarify for the rest of eternity. Lol & not just for you guys, but for myself as well. & that is the true difference between your thoughts & your circumstances.
I want to talk to you a little bit today about some useful ways to think about it all so that you don’t let your brain trick you & you can be one step ahead of yourself & not fall into the trap of getting stuck in certain areas of your life unbeknownst to you.
So, I want to start by saying that you have gone your whole life up until now, thinking that the things your brain gave to you were 100% true and factual & you’ve gone your whole life never, or at the most, rarely, questioning the things your brain is offering you, so of course, it will take time to make the shift to being curious instead of just complicit when your brain is offering you thoughts, & that’s totally normal, & just part of the process.
But I want you to know that before when you weren’t aware, you were unconscious. So you didn’t even know the process right? You didn’t even know that your brain was feeding you info & then you were choosing to accept it or not, you were just living your life. So although your brain had these certain thought processes & patterns for years & years, decades really, it does not mean that it is going to take that same amount of time to undo them.
I think some of us start to practice new thoughts, and we don’t see results right away, so maybe we assume it won’t work, or that it’s going to take just as long as it took for us to get here in the first place.
But I want you to understand that before, when your brain was creating these patterns, you were unaware. So you didn’t have much of a say, or any control really. But now you do.
& so the time it will take you to undo those patterns will be significantly less, because it’s not this passive thing you’re just waiting to unfold, it’s this thing you are actively pursuing & you are now conscious of how it all works, so you are standing in a big position of power here.
So even though ,yes, you’ve been thinking this way about certain things for decades, it will not take decades to undo. Because before now, it all developed unconsciously & now you are developing it consciously, which is a much faster, more productive/efficient way to change your own mind.
So basically I’m saying two things here right? I want you to be patient & understanding of yourself because you are trying to undo decades (& honestly if you’ve developed this thinking because of your family) then you are undoing generations of thinking, which is a big deal & can’t just happen overnight.
But also, that you have your consciousness on your side, so you won’t have to repeat the same long process it took you to get here. So just be mindful of this when you are working on changing your thoughts. Like, nothing has gone wrong, this is a big undertaking, but I have exactly the right tools to handle it.
So, now I want to talk about how we can do a better job of differentiating between our thoughts & our circumstances. I want to start by saying that almost everything is a thought. lol .
Like more often than not, you will be having a thought that you believe is a circumstance, because we are hardwired to just believe what our brains are saying as truth.
So when you find yourself really committed to a story, or really committed to a belief that you are having trouble changing your mind around, I want you to start asking yourself some questions.
Questions like: Could I be wrong about this? Or would everyone in the entire world agree this to be true? Or even, Is this true, or do I just think that it’s true?
Little nudging questions like this can be so powerful, because you are essentially inviting your brain to stop biting down on this version of reality & to start scanning for an alternative.
& the ability to do this is so powerful, because a lot of the time, we are committed to a certain reality even when it isn’t serving us right? Even when that reality is so painful for us, we think we HAVE to believe in it, because we think there are no other options.
But I want you to start getting used to the idea of the wiggle room around your reality. Like if this was a camera shot I want you to start zooming your vision out to see what you might be missing in the preferials, and then nudge on the sides of the frame to find out if there is something you might not be seeing.
When we feel really attached to a problem, or what we believe to be a circumstance, it’s like we get this tunnel vision & we cut ourselves off from any life lines that could let us off the hook. We grip down on it because we feel like this reality is ours to endure & it does not have to be that way. We’ve got to start looking for what could be outside of our frame of vision.
So I want to tell you a story about one of my clients.
She had just moved into a new apartment & was having a really hard time with her building management. She couldn’t get them to show up & do all the stuff that had to be done in the apartment & she was growing more & more frustrated & found herself fixated with the whole situation.
Now when she brought this problem to me, she felt that her circumstance was “my apartment management is making my move more difficult than it needs to be”, no Gals, I want you to hear this again. She was putting this in her C line, in her circumstance line. & not because she was trying to prove a point or anything, but because her brain really believed this to be true. Right “making it more difficult than it needs to be”, I mean, even as it is, that’s such a loaded circumstance right?
Because it implies so many other things as well. It implies that there is such a thing as a difficult vs a non- difficult move. It implies that the management is purposefully behaving in this way, as if they are aware that they could do it another way, but are choosing not to maybe in spite of my client? I’m not sure.
When we think our circumstances are true, we don’t even realize how jaded they are from the beginning. We don’t even realize that in framing it in this way we are setting ourselves up. Think about it, someone who is thinking of their management in this way does not have a frame of vision that is going to be focused on all the lovely things their management is doing. It’s going to be focused on all the things they aren’t doing. Focused on all of the holes.
Now i’m not saying we don’t ever focus on holes & then choose to fix them, or that we have to always be looking at the things that go right & just ignore the things that are going wrong. That’s not what I’m saying at all.
But most of us believe that in order to be productive or get things done, we can ONLY focus on the negatives, & what I am saying is that there is a different way.
It is possible to fix & solve our problems from a positive or even just neutral perspective. We don’t have to be worked up in order to care enough to fix. It’s just one of the many ways that we can fix, but honestly, I find it’s the least appealing option, because when we are trying to fix in this way it feels awful. So if I have the choice, I would personally like to fix from one of the many other emotions available to me as opposed to stress or overwhelm.
So anyways, back to this client.
So she came to me with this circumstance : “my management is making my move more difficult than it needs to be”
& so because of this was her c, she wrote her t as: I am not happy with how they are treating me.
Which is so interesting right? Because right now, we have two t’s in the model. Which already means that she will likely be having more than just one emotion in this case.
So, essentially from here she was just feeling all around stressed out, annoyed & frustrated. Obviously not how one wants to feel when they are trying to move into a new space & especially not after you’re already settled in.
Now, she did come up with some intentional models so that she could begin to change her perspective on the apartment & even doing a model incorrectly can be helpful because you at least can start to open yourself up to the idea that this is all optional, & even just being more aware of your thoughts in the first place is powerful in it of itself.
But I’m talking to you guys today, because seriously, if you can just start to see the difference between what is a thought & what is a circumstance. You are going to have a significantly better life, because you will be able to be unattached to things that once consumed the fuck out of you, lol
So when I walked my client through this model, something really amazing emerged. So first, we got rid of the circumstance she had & changed it to a neutral one so “Apartment management exists” or “my apartment comes with management”. Notice how in this instance, this circumstance has absolutely nothing to do with my client? It’s not her opinion, & it’s not even really framed as a problem.
So many times we want to put a problem in the circumstance line because we want to convey how this thing is causing us suffering or affecting us. & we do this because it has such a strong hold over us, and that if look at it as neutral than we are downplaying that suffering. & what I’m telling you, is not that we are down playing it. We are just making it so that you can decide how you want to think about it instead.
Because listen, you can do a model & decide you want to think “fuck that guy” that is totally upto you & completely within the realms of what you’re allowed to do. But the reason I want you to break it down in this way is to gain the awareness & to take power over the fact that it is a choice. You don’t have to be at the mercy of your apartment management, you are choosing to be at their mercy by deciding to think that they should behave differently. That is where most of us feel disempowered or helpless, because we don’t acknowledge our role in the whole situation.
Now I’m not saying acknowledge your role so that you blame yourself. I’m saying acknowledge your role to show yourself how powerful you actually are in this situation.
Okay so we made the situation neutral “management exists” & then we just moved that original C she had, down into the T line, into the thought line. So Management exists and then she thinks the thought “they are making this move much more difficult than it needs to be” & because she has this thought how does she feel? At the time she essentially said she felt helpless, right, like out of control.
So remember the only thing making her feel this way is that thought. So okay she feels helpless, so then how does she behave?
Well her actions ranged from calling the management company daily, sending email requests, complaining to her friends or family about it, at one point she reached out to the guy in charge & told him just to bring her paint & that she would just paint the bathroom herself,
Right, look at all of these things she is doing to try to take back control? All of the ways she’s running around like a mad woman because she believes the management is making things more difficult than they need to be.
But guys, what is her result here? From calling everyday, pestering everyone, trying to paint her own bathroom?
SHE is making her move more difficult than it needs to be.
She is creating that experience for herself.
Not the management. Her.
But this is why we are all so backwards right? She thinks that by doing all of this she is going to control the management, she is going to change what they are doing, so that she can feel better about her apartment.
She is trying to do her way into feeling better & she is using the apartment management as her pawn to make all of this make sense.
& this isn’t just her. This is all of us. We give so much power to our circumstances, that we then think the only way to feel better is to change the circumstances. To do, to take action. But that’s not where the problem lies, The problem is in her thinking. Because the only way she’s actually going to get to feel better is by changing her thoughts. That’s it.
So then we sat with this model together & we got down to the reel crux of it all. Like what was this really all about?
What was my client making it mean that this move was dififuclt? Right like why was this such a big deal for her, why was this such a problem in the first place?
Like sure moving can be annoying, but she was fixated on this, obsessively keeping track of people & involving any person who would listen.
Well it turns out, she was making it mean, that if this move didn’t go smoothly, then it meant that her moving there was a mistake.
I mean talk about a really big ultimatum to put on yourself. Of course you would then feel like you had to do 101 things to prove to yourself that it was all worth it.
Of course you would be looking for someone else to blame right? Like if this is the headlock you’re putting yourself in, you really don’t have very many good options right?
It’s like she cornered herself, & that’s how we react when we feel cornered. We lash out.
& listen this is absolutely not just my client, this is all of us.
We don’t realize what we are making things mean about ourselves. That we make our choices so conditional & then wonder why we feel trapped, or hopeless or disempowered.
We don’t realize that underneath us keeping a job we hate is that we make quitting it mean that paying for 4 years of college was a waste.
We don’t realize that underneath going a 2nd date with a guy we are uninterested in, is that we make it mean he’s our only hope of finding love because no one else is interested in us.
We don’t realize that underneath not asking for help is that we think that means we have to believe we are weak.
We make up these equations for ourselves & say if this thing here happens, then this other terrible thing over here must be true.
& we don’t even realize that we are the ones making up those rules. We are the one that created those conditions, We are the ones giving these things meaning.
The thing that is causing us all so much suffering, are these unchecked beliefs, these unchecked meanings.
We don’t stop to ask ourselves why we are making such a big deal out of something, because we are distracted by the belief that the circumstance is the problem. & if we could just change the circumstance, that will make the feeling of this being a big deal go away. We will just fix the circumstance to fix the feeling. Meanwhile the feeling is only there because of the meaning you are putting on the whole entire thing.
Look at what happened to my client.
It had nothing to do with the apartment management, & everything to do with her thinking.
& listen before we talked, she felt like this was all a good thing. Because she said normally she wouldn’t be so on top of it, so she felt like by doing this she was “handling it”.
Meanwhile she said “handling it” felt terrible. She wasn’t calmly approaching people & seeing what was up. She was frantic & desperate because she was looking to escape this feeling. & she thought the apartment management was going to be the way out of that feeling.
& so many of us do this, we think we are handling a situation even though handling it makes us feel fucking wild. We think that if we need to just keep doing until we get to the correct action that will officially solve this situation & then once it’s been handled THEN we can relax.
We have to start watching ourselves & becoming aware of our intentions. So many of us are misaligned with the real reasons for why we are doing things. We don’t realize a lot of the doing comes from trying to escape a feeling, either a current feeling or the threat of a possible feeling. We think that if we just do enough we’ll be able to escape it.
& it’s just not true. Because underneath it all, is the same work.
So if you think changing your circumstances is gonna fix what’s underneath you’re wrong, because it’s just all going to come with you to your new circumstance.
So you might as well get good at learning how to understand your thoughts so that you can move through the world in a way that better serves you so that you can actually be solving the problems that torment you & you can move on to the problems that excite & terrify you.
So, thoughts & circumstances, so incredibly important that you sit with yourself & really differentiate the two. Because this is everything! Once you get this down it’s like you enact this superpower to be able to step back from yourself & just witness, without being all up in it.
Then you get to come back in & decide what you want to do. & that power & authority over yourself & over your life, is fucking magical.
Okay QTs that’s everything, i’ll talk to you next week!