Our thoughts create the stories we live in
Our thoughts create our reality. We’re all familiar with the story of Red Riding Hood. In short, she goes into the woods to visit her grandmother. The wolf, in hopes of eating her, gets to her grandmother’s house first, swallows her whole and waits for Red Riding Hood in hopes of a second meal.
How many of us have accepted this fable and the sequence of events as true? Obviously, it’s not a real story but how many of us ever questioned the rationality behind it?
We simply accept that Red Riding Hood was ‘good’ and the wolf was ‘bad’ however:
- What if the wolf had starving cubs to feed and their only chance of survival was for the wolf to eat Red Riding Hood?
- Why would the wolf need to eat two people? Surely one was enough?
- What made Red Riding Hood so special that the wolf wanted to eat her too?
- What if Red Riding Hood had killed the wolfs cubs weeks before going into the wood to make a fur coat?
With this new information would we still think the wolf was ‘bad’ and Red Riding Hood was ‘good’?
The point I’m illustrating is we live in stories. Very often we feel secure in our thoughts and interpretation of events as ‘true’ but fail to consider the whole picture. We don’t question the ‘outlying’ sequence of events around the story. You’ve heard the saying ‘there are so many holes in this story’. However, when it comes to the stories we tell ourselves those holes disappear completely. We accept them as the truth.
Our thoughts create the stories we live out of
The stories we tell ourselves paint characters as villain’s or victors. There is typically the ‘good’ and the ‘bad’ and with that, we can carry a host of resentment and judgement towards others and at times ourselves. The wolf was definitely the villain, right? Surely?
We are pulled into stories
We are pulled into the stories of others and often accept their truth as the truth, and adopt it as our truth. It’s easy to paint others with somebody else’s brush without question. I mean, why would somebody we trust lie? Why would their interpretation of events be incorrect? Red Riding Hood was an innocent girl, wasn’t she?
Our thoughts create our reality and the stories we tell ourselves are not as clear cut as they may first appear. It’s healthy to review our long-held beliefs and assessments of people and ourselves and ask the question – how sure am I that ‘my’ truth is ‘the’ truth? There is an incredible amount of freedom to be had when we reflect honestly and openly about our thoughts and interpretations of the stories we live in and out of. I have witnessed incredible healing in the lives of people I coach when they begin the journey towards examining the stories that often control their lives.
When you find yourself caught in a story, either your own or that of others, picture yourself standing on the edge of the woods and consider turning around and not going in.
Richard is available for 1:1 coaching. Send him a mail for additional information. Read more of Richard’s blog here