Podcast Episode 64 – Good Thought, Bad Thought

Jul 1, 2023 | Podcast

I’m Diana Swillinger, and this is the Renew Your Mind podcast. Episode 64 Good Thought, Bad Thought.

DIANA: Hey. Hey, everybody. What is happening? I wish I could hear your answers. What’s happening? I bet I’d hear things like, I’m packing for my family camping trip, or I’m traveling to see my mom, getting ready for the lake day or driving to the store to get stuff for the family barbecue. So many fun things happening in summer, right? I would love to hear what’s happening in your life. Wouldn’t that be fun? I wish these podcasts were two ways and I could just hear from you. In fact, I would love to come up with more ways to hear from you. You guys know you can contact me anytime you want. If you’ve not done a free mind shift call with me yet, you can do that. Some of you haven’t done that. If you haven’t joined the Renew Your Mind community on Facebook yet, you can do that. You talk to me whenever you want over there and everybody else in the community. Several hundred people there. Uh, some of you send me emails sometimes, but most of you don’t. So I’m here for you. I’m trying to think of other ways for you guys to reach out for me. Maybe listener questions and ways you can get your questions answered on the podcast and all that stuff. I don’t have that set up right now, but, you know, you can email me. If you email me, I will email you back me. Not somebody else. It’s me. And, um, if you have a question you ever want me to answer in the podcast, you could email that to me too. Or you can just ask me questions. I mean, whatever. So if any of you have been wanting to reach out and just haven’t done it yet, go ahead and email me. It’s Diana@dianaswillinger.com. Diana@dianaswillinger.com easy. Just look at how to spell my name on the, uh, podcast, and I bet I’ll get a whole bunch of I bet I’ll get at least two emails from you all. Probably two. That’s what I’m guessing. Which two is it going to be? It’s funny because there’s hundreds of people listening to this every week, but I think it’s going to be two. We’ll see. Let it be you. All right? And I will email you back.

Okay, on to today’s topic. Thoughts as usual. Thoughts and emotions, right? But the more ways we explore how to think about this and come at it from different angles, the farther we get in our mind renewal journey because whatever emotion you’re having at any given time, it’s coming from a thought. And we can control our thoughts. Therefore m, we can control our emotions. And I know it’s not always easy. That’s true. And sometimes we don’t know how. Or sometimes we have to practice, or sometimes it takes time, but it’s possible and it’s totally worth it for today. I thought it would be fun to simplify this into a fun little game. I call the game Good thought, bad thought.

So here’s how we’re going to do this. I’m going to say a thought and give you a moment to guess if it’s a good thought or a bad thought. Some of you competitive people, you’re going to want to keep score just so that you know you do awesome. I’m going to do five thoughts. So if you want to see how you do, you don’t have to keep score if you don’t want to. Just check in with your own thoughts and see what you think. This is how we grow. We don’t just wait for somebody else to tell us something. We use our critical thinking brain and we try to come up with some answers and process through it on our own. So I’m going to give you a thought and I’m going to pause and you’re going to use your own brain and thinking to think about if you think it’s a good thought or a bad thought. And there is no right or wrong answer. Okay, this is all just for fun and for learning. So here we go. Thought number one. Life is hard. Is that a good thought or a bad thought? What do you think? Life is hard.

If you’re not sure, you can ask yourself how that thought makes you feel. What emotion comes up for you with that thought? Life is hard for me. I feel discouraged or resigned or even lonely. So good thought or bad thought? I’d say it’s a bad thought because of how it makes me feel. Do you get those emotions too? Is that what came up for you? And sometimes we have thoughts kind of hanging off of the main thought on little strings. So if we can’t tell if it’s a good thought or bad thought, we can see what other thoughts are kind of if we were to keep thinking that thought and then went into some other thoughts after it, what would those follow up thoughts be? I kind of think of it like, did you guys make well, this will age me, probably. Did you make mobiles or mobiles in grade school? This was like late 70s for me. We brought hangers to school and we used string and we’d hang little things or art or decorations off of the main hanger. Or you could think of wind chimes too, I suppose. Like, uh, if you hang up a wind chime, there’s a main decoration. I have a ladybug one. I’ve seen all sorts of ones, but there’s like, the main hub. That’s the main thought. And then there’s strings that all the chimes hang off of those little extra things hanging off. If the main decorations of thought, all those chimes hanging off, or the decorations hanging off the mobile, those are our dangling thoughts. So if life is hard is the main thought, there’s a lot of dangling thoughts that are going to sound like life is hard. I want to give up. It takes so much, uh, energy.

There’s always something. I never get a break. This never ends. I’m exhausted. All right, so can you see, like, especially if you have those dangling thoughts, it’s a bad thought. So I know some of you, especially if you’ve coached with me or you’ve come to my webinars or boot camp, you’re like, what’s the replacement thought? But that’s not part of this game. Sorry. If you want to come up with your own replacement thought, just remember that you need to believe it’s true or it won’t work. Okay? All right, next thought. I can figure this out. Good thought or bad thought? I can figure this out. I think it’s a good thought, right? What emotion does it create? Maybe commitment, determination could be motivation or confidence. Now, uh, I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed, but commitment and determination, maybe even motivation, they don’t always feel great. We do recognize that these are good emotions. We’ve decided they’re good emotions because they serve us. But I don’t know if you’ve noticed, they can be uncomfortable. So even if we know this is a good thought, we might resist it. Because if I’m determined, because I think I can figure this out and I believe it, then I’ll be moving forward to figure it out. And moving forward in figuring it out can be uncomfortable. But it is a good thought, because the outcome is beneficial for our lives or will grow or will learn and mature or improve our relationships with a thought like that. Okay, so how are you doing? Are you two for two on these questions? Good thought, bad thought, 50 50 doesn’t matter. No worries. Even if your answers aren’t matching mine, you’re stretching your brain, so that’s a good thing.

All right, thought number three people shouldn’t riot. Is that a good thought or a bad thought? People shouldn’t riot. I think this thought sounds like a good thought to many people, I’m sure of that, m. But is it? Let’s check. What emotions does it create for you? People shouldn’t riot. Most common emotion that comes from thinking people shouldn’t riot. People shouldn’t do something I should say the most common emotion that comes from thinking people shouldn’t do something that they’re already doing is frustration. I imagine if we’re honest, some other emotions might come from that thought. That thought might create emotions like self righteous, indignant, judgmental, anger. Well, isn’t that interesting? A uh, thought people shouldn’t riot seems like a good thought, but it creates emotions that are in the family of anger and arrogance because indignant and self righteous and judgmental are in the arrogant family. Isn’t that fascinating? So is a thought that takes us to anger or arrogance a good thought or a bad thought? I think if we’re going to be honest, we have to recognize it’s a bad thought. Because thinking people shouldn’t riot takes us to emotions that don’t generally serve us or others. If we wanted to examine it further, we could see what kind of things do we do? What kind of things do we say? How do we treat other people when anger is our driving emotion? For now, we’re just going to imagine because that’s not part of this game. But that’s part of how we know if this, uh, is a good thought or a bad thought.

Usually anger and arrogance are not a pretty place to be in or to act from. Isn’t that interesting? Is this breaking your brain a little yet? I hope so. I love to kind of break us out of the mold of the thinking that we’re stuck in. Right. This is how we get unstuck. All right, so before we get to the next thought, I just want to say I’m not saying that we need to think people should riot. We can still not approve of rioting. That’s fine. But we can find a, uh, different thought that doesn’t create arrogant and angry emotions. I mean, we could think thoughts about writing that lead us to love or compassion or some other emotions. That is possible, too. Uh, I’m always wishing people knew this magic because what would our world be like if everyone understood this and was willing to do it? Could be fabulous. Like, let’s all live in love and compassion instead of anger and arrogance. All right, next thought. Thought number four. Things never seem to work out for me. Good thought or bad thought. I’m thinking most of you got this one. That’s a bad thought.

That thought will create emotions like defeat, self pity, hopelessness, or failure. It’s a bad thought. Here’s a quick pro tip. Did you notice that thought had an absolute in it? It had the word never in it. Absolutes in our thinking are usually not going to serve us. The thought never kind of tanks that thought because it makes that thought a lie as well. So not only does that thought not service, but it’s a lie. The only thoughts that use absolutes, that I use absolutes in are thoughts about God and his character. And I do use absolutes in thoughts about my love for the people in my life. Like, I will always love my kids no matter what they do, and god is always there for me. Jesus will never leave me. Okay, in those instances, I’ll use absolutes. But for most of the things we think we can drop the absolutes. They confine our thinking, and they confine our maturing because they make us less teachable and less humble. All right, last thought. You ready? How you doing? This is number five, I love me just as I am. Good thought or bad thought? Well, if you believe that thought, I think it’s one of the best thoughts you can ever think. When you think I love me just as I am and you believe it, it creates the emotions of acceptance, love, compassion, humility for yourself, but ultimately for all the other people in your life too. But if you don’t believe it, it could sabotage you because of the dangling thoughts.

Remember the wind chime in the mobile picture dangling Thoughts? If you think I love me just as I am, and you’ve got thoughts following it up like but no one else does, or I love me just as I am, even though I’m a complete mess, I love me just as I am, but sometimes I hate me too. I love me just as I am, but God doesn’t. If you have bad thoughts attached to it, that lets you know you don’t believe it. It lets you know you don’t actually love you just as you are. Not if you add those on the end. It’s not a good thought for you then, because it’s a white I call it a white knuckle thought. I just want to believe that I love me just as I am, but then I’ve got these dangling thoughts that kind of sabotage it all. It’s no good then, unless you clean up those dangling thoughts. And that goes for any thoughts, really. So, basically, the way we determine if a thought is good or bad is through emotions it creates for us and the other questions. Just to recap, I mean, this was the good thought, bad thought game, and we really focused on emotions. But remember, I’ve got three questions you can ask yourself about any thought. Is it true? Is it absolutely true? Does it serve me? And does it honor God?

That’s your three question litmus test as well. So you can check if a thought is good or bad by your emotions and by those questions. Wasn’t that a fun game? I want to let you guys know too, though. It can be tempting to be like, oh, it’s a bad thought, so I don’t want to think that anymore. I need to get out of this thought right now. But you don’t. Sometimes we need some time. Like m just a few weeks ago, I was struggling with guilt. Or I shouldn’t even say I was struggling. I was feeling and processing guilt. I noticed the emotion. I was able to identify with some careful thought, what thought was creating that emotion. But I wasn’t ready to move on. I gave myself slack. I’m like, I guess I’m going to feel some guilt right now. I’m going to allow the emotion and I’m going to be curious about the thought that’s creating it. I knew the thought wasn’t true, but I wasn’t ready to let go of it yet. I needed a couple of days and then I was ready to change my thought and move out of it. That’s okay. I needed to process the emotion of guilt first. But what we don’t want to do is just spin in bad thought after bad thought, day after day, never examining them, never questioning them.

We don’t want to be stuck in suppressing and pushing down any of the emotions that are uncomfortable and not allowing ourselves to be curious or brave enough to look at the thoughts and the emotions that are happening within us. We want to do that. We want to examine the thoughts and the emotions. We want to be curious. We want to be courageous. We want to reject thought spins that keep us in the pits. Okay. There’s healthy ways to process our emotions. And then if you just feel like you have an onslaught of oppressing negative emotions, there’s a better way. Okay? And we examine our thoughts one by one. This is how we renew our minds. This is the process. This is the way you all we can do it. We can be brave. We can be curious, we can examine our thoughts. And I’m honored to be on this journey with you.

Remember, send me that email. Diana@dianasvillinger.com, tell me something happening in your life. Tell me thought, uh, that you’re having. Ask me to help you identify if a thought is good or bad. Tell me what you’re looking forward to. Anything. I’m here. I would love to connect. So I’m watching for that email. And that’s it for today, y’all. Uh, looking forward to hearing from you. Until then, take care of you.

As an advanced certified life coach, I help Christian women trying to live their best lives, but they still feel unsatisfied and stuck. I teach thought management skills that work so you can enjoy life again and step into who God has created you to be. Don’t forget to head on over to Rympodcast.com to get my free resources or a free coaching call.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This