Have you ever seen a baby scowl? Everyone in the room knows what he is thinking!
Some of us adults think we hide our emotions. But whereas our faces may not show the scowl, the fruits of our efforts do.
What does this mean?
Let’s analyze a figurative writer. We’ll call her Eva. Eva desires to write a novel. She sits down on January 1 and types up a title to her work. She tries to write a few paragraphs, grows frustrated with the beginning sentence, and shoves the work aside until January 2.
January 2 she shows up at her desk, ready to create. But then the stupid character on the third page just won’t behave. Eva throws her pencil across the room and storms to the kitchen for a soda. Complaining to her roommate, she decides to go buy some twinkies.
March 14 she finally shows back up at her writing desk. By then, she’s tired of even thinking she’s a writer, wads up the three pages of her “novel”, bites them hard with her teeth…just to show them who is boss…and then flushes them down the toilet.
Thought precedes action. What do Eva’s actions expose about what she was thinking, about the internal self-talk she allowed?
Let’s look at another figurative writer. We’ll call her Cassidy. Cassidy also starts a novel on January 1 and consistently writes on it every Saturday. She completes it on December 31 of that year.
What were the differences? Cassidy too struggled with that idiot character on the third page. She hated the plot impasses she periodically encountered. But she didn’t give up. Why?
It all comes down to the invisible stories we tell ourselves ABOUT us, about our project, about our ability to do and work through/past hard things. Babies’ faces show what they think; our results show what we think.
Ever heard, “If you think you can, you’re right. If you think you can’t, you’re right”?
Cassidy kept on writing. Why? Because the stories she was telling herself ABOUT HERSELF were different than Eva’s internal feedback or self-talk.
What are the thoughts you tell yourself when you hit an impasse or a roadblock to a goal you were working on? It is important you decipher this, because it will make all the difference in whether you choose to be an Eva or a Cassidy.
Do you tell yourself that challenges are too much a bother to deal with? Or do you tell yourself that challenges are simply a part of life and you can’t wait to work through them so you can get to the other side?
People may be able to hide what they’re feeling by showing a passive face. But just remember this: your thoughts are eventually made transparent by whether or not you gave up on your goals.
(Hmmm. Do you self-talk in downbeat or upbeat ways? It will make all the difference whether you will achieve your goals or not. This just might be worth taking some time to journal about!)