You’ve probably heard that your thoughts create your reality. It’s true. They do. And the relationship with your thoughts as well.
The mind is like the heart. It has a job. To think is the job of the mind as the heart’s job is to beat.
What’s really great, and studies show, is that we can create the thoughts that go through the mind. I’ve had personal experience with this from being judgmental and impatient to having kindness and patience. It’s happened through a change in my thoughts.
There can be events in our lives that cause us to take a big step back and reevaluate what we’re doing with our lives. My friends death last month did that for me. It caused me to step back and say, “Where can I eliminate what doesn’t serve me and create what does.” And more importantly, how can I have more gratitude today (because, after all, I get to be here)?
When your mind says, “I have to wash the dishes, or do the laundry, or go to work, or weed the garden, or pick up my kids, or pay the bills, or clean my house, or send this email…” there’s a feeling inside of torture – I HAVE to do it, like it’s a chore and a bother.
Here are 3 words I’ve been playing with and using and infusing into my day, “I GET TO.”
Replace any sentence in your head that starts with “I have to” or “I need to” to “I GET to.” It will create a totally different experience in your mind and how you see your day.
Imagine if you said, “I get to pay the bills.” It totally changes the relationship you have with money right in that moment.
Or if you said, “I get to go to work.” It gives you an appreciation to have a job to go to.
Or if you said, “I get to clean the house.” How awesome that you have a house to clean!
Or if you said, “I get to pick my kids up at school” or “I get to have this uncomfortable conversation with my partner.” I know – that’s a little harder to swallow, but what if you could start seeing the greatest challenges as a gift?”
It will bring gratitude to your day, to your week, and to your life. And where there’s gratitude, there’s joy. They are inseparable.
Gratitude and joy aren’t something that just pop up and come about one day. It takes time, and I’ve found that this simple yet profound practice is one of the most impactful ways to create it.
Start today. What do you “get to do” today that you’ve thought of as a chore? Practice saying these words for one week and notice what changes for you in your heart.
For more tips like this, check out James Baraz’s book Awakening Joy.