"Mind tattoos" are mental imprints. Though not physically visible, these manifest themselves in your actions, reactions, and thought processes, and more often than not, they are a negative imprint. If body tattoos are exhibits, might we not view mind tattoos as inhibits? Unable to be concealed no matter how hard you try to cover them up with excuses, distractions, or addictions, mind tattoos harm you through their persistence and habitual nature. However, with small effort and much resolve, it is possible to shed your mind tattoos. On paper the recipe is very simple, and certainly it will be harder to actually implement, but once you're resolved to deal with your mind tattoos, and once you dedicate yourself to this task, your life will take a turn for the better.
- Use the simple displacement method. Mind tattoos and negative mindsets grow in a vacuum. Do not allow such a vacuum to be created in your mind. Increase your curiosity for things around you and beyond, allow yourself the privilege to be wonder-struck. Let the newness of every moment tickle your senses. Question yourself, keep asking what, why, when, where and how. A questioning mind is an open mind. It is not a knowing mind (the knowing mind soon leads to arrogance and shutting down on newness). Only an open mind can be creative. A knowing mind can never be creative.
- When you open your mind, it can be filled with creativity, positivity and newness. Negative mindsets and tattoos will be displaced and deleted.
- A questioning stance sensitizes the mind in a very special way, enabling it to sense what would have been missed otherwise.
- Come out of the mindset of blame games. The most damaging tattoo is the tendency to look for and find a scapegoat for every situation. Release yourself from the tendency of being problem averse and for shifting away responsibility. Stop wringing up your hands whenever there is a problem; while it is good to hope for a life without problems, realistically it is possible only when you work to make your problems surmountable, by cultivating a problem-friendly attitude. This means just rolling up your sleeves whenever you're faced with a problem, and searching for an opportunity to improve the quality of your life by dealing with the problem. Being faced with a problem is never a problem. It is a way of life and once you have woven problem-solving into the matrix of your life, you will feel stronger, more capable, and freer of the negative mind tattoos.
- Open your mind to ideas from friends, acquaintances, and even strangers. A tattooed mind is beset with preconceived ideas and closed to suggestion from outside. Open up your thinking to the ideas, opinions, and viewpoints gathered from your friends, colleagues, and even from strangers. Once you realize the value of these alternative ideas and views, you will be in a position to start using your increased understanding and empathy to improve the quality of your own thought and decision processes.
- Set achievable goals, and achieve set goals. A major reason for negative thought process is failure on personal or professional front; not just failure though – it is the failure to learn and grow from failure, to accept it as part of life's lessons. The negative thinking can set in when personal or professional goals are not properly set. An improper understanding of your strengths or constraints often results in goals being not properly set and many excuses being made to sidestep developing a purpose to your life. In letting others make the decisions and change the rules on you, you drift rather than achieve through life. Instead, know yourself, understand yourself, and be yourself when setting your goals. This way you can be successful in setting and achieving your goal and keep failure out of your door. Moreover, do not be dissuaded by the failures but see them as detours that teach what to do better next time.
- Come out of the habit of perennial dissatisfaction. Perennial dissatisfaction is a major indication of a person with a negative mindset; a positive thinker can spot such a person a mile away and will do their best to steer clear (hence, you attract more negativity than its opposite). It is good to be acutely aware of your dissatisfaction and unfulfilled desires. However, this awareness should not frustrate you or cause you to give up citing everything as being "too hard" or "all over". Even if you are frustrated, it should never be reflected in your behavior toward other people. As a matter of fact, you should use this awareness as a stimulus to realize your dreams, and to be grateful for that which you have achieved already. See How to Stop Feeling Like Your Life Isn't Good Enough.
- Don’t overestimate the effects of your level (or lack) of schooling. A feeling of being uneducated or inadequately educated is one of the biggest self-destructing tattoo one can carry around. But higher level schooling can also imprint more negative tattoos: arrogance, self-righteous behavior, and greater dissatisfaction with one's lot in life or sensitivity to past failures. Whatever category you fall into, understand that schooling is different from education. Education is sourced from life itself, the people you meet, the things you discover, and the environment in which you move and observe daily. Very often people with less or no schooling are found to be highly educated in matters of life and other way round. Less schooled people are often highly successful because they have minds clear of the biases that schooling can build into us. The more highly schooled who have simply associated their learning with being of a "higher status" might actually lack openness to new ideas and empathy for others, so they wind up less likely to succeed. Both would do better to
- realize that universities and degrees do not determine your level of your education and do not even determine a person's all-round intelligence or suitability for the rest of life.
- Instead, figure out what you still need to learn and find the fastest way to learn it.
- Reframe your situation from different angles. A situation often appears to be hopeless and irretrievable. In many cases, such catastrophizing does not ultimately turn out to be true, especially where it is based on allowing ourselves to be the victim and to imagine things that are not there. Try to reframe the situation from different angles till you find an angle from where it looks acceptable. For example, in a cricket match in a close run-out decision, sometimes it appears that the batsman is out; however, reframing it from different angles gives the umpire more options of viewing the truth and taking correct decision. Similarly, being your own inner umpire (referee) by mental reframing of the situation often helps you to make the correct decision.
- Tattoo your mind with conscious, positive thoughts. What we tattoo on any part of the body for others to see is not as important as what we tattoo in our minds. Much of what is tattooed there has been absorbed from the criticisms, expectations, and limitations placed upon us by other people; they are not wanted or chosen tattoos but they are embedded out of obligation, loyalty, misplaced trust, and over-eagerness to please the other. On the other hand, positive, successful, energetic mind tattoos are a must to attain success and are tattoos that we can choose to implant and thrive from. So, it should be your conscious (and ultimately subconscious) endeavor to keep tattooing your mind with thoughts that are only about winning or thriving. Implant and nourish the tattoos that reflect who you want to be, the goals you want to reach, and the successes you seek to achieve. Mentally, make or choose your day's outcomes for the day every single day.
- Focus doesn't simply sprout unaided. It requires effort and conscious attention. However, once you are focused, you can achieve a great deal of your heart's desire because you're consciously attending to what needs to be done, as well as channeling your subconscious experience more effectively.
- Be very careful when implementing the process of removing your negative tattoos. It is necessary to restrain your feelings and impulses.
- While you are going through this reform process, people around you could be the biggest inhibiting factors for you. Please be patient with them and be determined in your objective. Sometimes the fears and insecurities of others mean that they want us to stay where we are and not change or improve but you cannot bear their burdens for them, you can only choose to be a better person for yourself.
- Take the advice and guidance of peers and elders. While you do not have to heed all that is said, other people's experiences are important sources of information and guidance to set you on the better path through avoiding the pitfalls that they experienced. Remember that reinventing the wheel is a waste of your time when you stand in front of many generations' of experience.
- Thriving is better than winning at someone else's expense. In the long run it helps you sleep better at night and gives you more future resources. If you step on people during the climb, they'll kick you hard on the way down and remember exactly who you are.
- Give yourself time. Expecting too much too early can result in disappointment and frustration.
- Your mental tattoos are well entrenched and may resist evacuation initially. You need to be persistent and confident. You can, and you will, release your mind from them.
- Filter the advice that comes in from other people with trial and error. Try it honestly but when the trial fails, look at why. They can be right for themselves and wrong for you. Sedentary people can get sick from lack of exercise but a disabled person can get sick from exercise. If those other people have the same mind tattoos, they can often just reinforce them - it didn't just crop up on its own. Don't let them just hand the same biases back to you with a new set of intellectual rationalizations. Your mind tattoos came from somewhere so consider the source and weigh ideas for themselves.
- If your friends and enemies both agree on something about you, it's probably true or something about you makes people see you that way.
Things You'll Need
- A strong resolve
- Self realization
- A will to change
- How to Exercise an Open Mind
- How to Be Open Minded
- How to Deal With Negative People
- How to Think Positively
- How to Be Positive
- How to Erase Negative Influence and Live Positively
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