We know that our thoughts create our realities. We know that any old thoughts that pop up for us can be detrimental if we allow them to stick around and create our present experiences. For many of us, “old stories” are the thoughts and beliefs we’ve become accustomed to thinking over and over- thoughts that typically began in childhood. “I’m not good enough.” “I can never do that.” “Some people just have it better than me.” Etc. Those old thoughts comprise our “old stories.”
Once we become present, we become powerfully aware that we can change those stories. If you’ve ever had the desire to change your story, you’ve made a transformational shift in your consciousness, and you are much further than so many people who are not even aware of their stories.
But once we've identified our “old stories” that are no longer serving us, and desire to create new stories, how do we do it? Is it hard to “flip the switch” and live in a new story, therefore a new reality? What steps do we need to take to get rid of the old and create the new?
I’ve heard from so many people:
“I’ve lived like this for so long. It’ll be hard to change.”
“The old ways are so ingrained in me. I doubt I’ll change now.”
“You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”
“That sounds great, but I can’t just erase XX+ years of doing it the old way.”
If you say those things and believe those things – guess what? They’ll be true for you! None of those sentences needs to be true. In fact, you are free from the past at any moment you decide to be- because the past is just a story. It’s an illusion that doesn’t exist anymore, unless you make it true right now.
Basically: the story you tell about how easy (or difficult) it is to create a new story will be true for you.
Step one, then, in creating and living a new story, is believing that creating your new story will be effortless, and you’ll enjoy every moment of it.
I make effortless changes not because I'm so special- but because I believe change can be effortless. I look for examples of how true that is. I resonate with effortless change. I pay attention to what I want- instead of the stories I used to tell of what I don't want.
Your thoughts will want to contradict this. Thankfully, you can dismiss those thoughts, too.
Thoughts that hold you back from creating new stories:
- Change is hard
- I don’t want to get my hopes up and be disappointed
- Everyone knows my old story. If I change, they won't understand, or worse, they won't want to be around me anymore.
- I'm ashamed of my old story and don't want to face it.
- My new story won't be good enough. I'll sell myself short.
Here are truths about telling a new story that I choose to believe:
- Change is effortless and fun
- I am no longer tempted to tell my old stories of pain
- I no longer identify with those stories as “mine”- they were just thoughts I formerly chose to believe
- Becoming my highest self is as easy as choosing it this moment
- I inspire others with my new story and show them how to create their own
Now, when the thought slips in that “this is hard” or “I just can't shake my old story,” I laugh, because those are just thoughts I can choose to believe – or choose the opposite, that “this is easy” and “I love creating my new stories.”
How to Easily Create New Stories:
1. Believe it will be fun and easy for you. Look for reasons this is true – ignore the thoughts that try to reason otherwise. When I see how easy it is to live a present life, I no longer saddle myself with the stories of “this is hard.” Being present is the easiest, most natural place for us to be. Taking the time to remember the past and create the future is what robs us of our energy, creativity and joy.
2. Start with what you know you'd love to create in your life. I trust that the more I live a life of the stories I want to create, the more amazing new things will come to me that I never knew about before. Instead of worrying about what I might want that I haven’t even discovered yet, I start with what I know I love. Simple things, little things. I know I want to be healthy, happy, and peaceful. The details are fun but I don’t need to know all the details to have health, happiness, and peace!
3. Let discovery be a process. At first, I was overwhelmed by all the good things I could put in my new story. I was afraid I might not pick the best. But that's just a fear! I know that as I discover new, wonderful things that I want in my life I can add them to my story- and take anything out at any time, because change is not hard.
4. No longer identify with old stories. It’s fine to acknowledge that a story used to be true for you. I have all kinds of stories I laugh about now that I used to believe. Fortunately, none of those have to be true now. I also don’t spend much time remembering what used to be true for me. All that time can be much more powerfully spent creating the life I want now.
5. Watch out for the following thoughts and beliefs: “I always,” “I never,” “I can’t,” “I have to,” “I should/shouldn’t.” For me, these are great indicators of a story I’m carrying with me that no longer serves me. I don’t “fear” hearing these phrases in my head, instead I am grateful when I notice them because I can see there is a place that can be beautifully transformed by presence and a new story.
6. As soon as an old story pops up for you, acknowledge it, and ask yourself what you’d like to be true, instead. As thoughts come up, we have a beautiful dance of bringing ourselves back to the present and creating what we want now. Don’t look at it like a struggle, or anything difficult to achieve. Look at it as a beautiful dance. Your mind approaches with an old thought, you step to the side with a swirl of something more beautiful and present. Simply being present with your thoughts will help you choose which ones are working for you and which ones you prefer instead.