[00:00:00] Hello, my creative friend. Welcome back to another episode of BDI Create today. Today, we are looking again at our life's tapestry and we are going to unravel some snarly knots that bind us and keep that beautiful shiny thread of creativity from realizing its full potential.
Today we are going to focus on how we often choose on purpose to think negative thoughts or have a focus that is primarily negative. And we'll look at how negativity has, well, a negative impact. So, my friend, I have a question for you. How are you? Now, I just asked you a super common question.[00:01:00]
How are you? This is a phrase we hear a lot. How often have you, after hearing the question, how are you? How often have you said, I'm so tired, I am too busy, I am super stressed. Sadly, these kinds of responses have been rather a badge of honor that we choose to wear busy, tired, or stressed. Now, in our defense, the reason we often choose these labels for ourself is we could honestly be very tired and busy and stressed.
But these labels have also been given out as accolades in our society. If you're busy, tired, stressed, well, you clearly must work harder and most likely have more talent and are probably more successful, right? But come on, why are these negative labels something we applaud? Does [00:02:00] this mean that if you are a hard worker, you have to be too busy?
Does this mean that a talented person needs to always be tired? Does this mean that if you want to be a successful person, you have to be overly stressed? When we allow negative emotions to become a primary focus, they can fade, erode, and sometimes erase the creativity we have in our And as we discussed, Creativity is as important as good nutrition and sleep.
Now, I have often been busy, tired, and stressed, especially when I was a young mother.
And I remember one day going to a party shortly after we built our house. Uh, I might think my girls, they would have been around two and five years old. So clearly I had a right to be busy, tired, and stressed, right? I just moved into a new house. I had little girls that were. [00:03:00] Very busy and active. And I had a creative business that was keeping me busy.
I remember that someone came up to me and said, Hi, how are you? And my answer to them was, Oh, I'm so busy. And I remember to this day, the reply I received back was, Yes, you are always so busy. Now, the reason I remember this snippet of life is that All of a sudden I realized, Oh my gosh, I must say, Oh, I'm so busy a lot.
And Oh goodness. Was this how I wanted people to remember me? Hey, look, there's Beth Buffington. She's so busy. The reply that was given to me at this party was like a wake up call. And I suddenly thought, wow, that is not the way I want people to see me. I don't want to be unapproachable because I'm always so busy.
So [00:04:00] tired, so stressed. I believe this was one of the last times I gave myself that label. And I know I started trying to only give that kind of reply when I had a spectacular reason to use it. I decided. It would be better to be remembered as someone who was grateful that I had work to do in my creative business.
Now, how often do we find ourselves voluntarily wearing these negative labels? I'm busy. I'm tired. I'm stressed. It happens. A lot. I'm here to tell you that. Now I, used to work, for several years at a creative company that rewarded negativity. You were a better and more loyal employee if you came in early, if you worked late, if you ate lunch at your computer.
If you rarely took advantage of vacations, or if you did, you worked through your vacation, [00:05:00] or during your vacation, and you were expected to come to work sick. I remember being in a meeting one time with someone who was suffering from a horrible migraine headache.
nOw we did all these things because they seemed to be rewarded as much as any creative idea or work that we produced or project that was completed. Our focus. With negative and my friend, my creativity was burned out by the time I finally gave two weeks notice to leave.
What if I told you that these labels that we choose to wear are actually chains that are keeping us from the joy and fulfillment that creativity can provide?
What we don't realize is that we are unwittingly building barriers around our creativity. I'm busy. I'm tired. I'm stressed.
These negative [00:06:00] phrases become our focus. And this negativity is what we begin to believe most about ourselves and our capabilities. Our brains, they start to lead with pain. They look for discomfort. Our brains focus on what is not well. And this becomes how we feel. It becomes how we see ourselves. We become the labels of negativity that we wear and often wear with pride because it is often more than a name tag.
It sometimes becomes a badge that is noticed and honored. By the people that we work with, by the people that we surround ourselves with. It's obvious then, isn't it, that focusing on negativity is not where we should be placing our concentration. What if we could change the way we see and label ourselves?
George Carlin once said, some people see the glass half full, others see it [00:07:00] half empty. I, he said, see a glass that's twice as big as it needs to be. There's creativity for you, my friend, a glass that is twice as big as it needs to be. Now, our minds are powerful storytellers and the labels we choose to adopt shape the narrative of our lives.
But here's the catch. Focusing on negative emotions or events not only fades or worse erases access to our creativity, but it also builds walls that confine us. from reaching our creative potential. Now, here is a great story to explain what I'm talking about here. I think it's the perfect illustration for what we're discussing.
An old Cherokee Indian chief was teaching his grandson about life and he told the boy, a fight is going on inside me. It's a fight between two wolves.
[00:08:00] One wolf is dark. It is evil. It is anger, jealousy, regret, greed, self pity, guilt, resentment, false pride, and ego. And he continued, the other wolf is a light wolf and it is good.
It is joy and peace and love and hope and humility. It is kindness, empathy, generosity. It is truth, compassion, and faith. Now he said the same fight is going on inside you. My son and inside of every other person on the face of this earth. So the grandson pondered this for a moment and then he asked, grandfather, which wolf will win?
And the grandfather smiled and simply said to the boy, the wolf that wins. is the one you feed. Consider this. When we incessantly tell ourselves, I'm too busy, I'm so [00:09:00] tired. We are essentially scripting a story that robs us of creative thought. Our brain becomes wired to focus on what we feed it. And if we feed it negativity, then we dwell on negativity and it becomes a formidable barrier to the happiness and the creative fulfillment.
That we need and that we seek.
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We're to make some money. So ready to discover more about your creativity? Hop onto my list. Go to [00:11:00] www. bdi create. today and get on my email list. Just go to www. bdi create. today Oh, welcome back. Let's return to our discussion about negative thoughts and the labels we choose to wear. Now, remember in episode one, I told you we would learn how science backs up how creativity can thrive or not thrive in our lives.
Well, let's talk about the not thrive part for just a second. Research indicates that negative self talk can lead to decreased cognitive function and diminished creative thinking. It's like putting blinders on in your mind, limiting your mind of its ability to perceive possibilities and creative solutions.
So when your brain tells you you're tired, you're [00:12:00] too busy, you are stressed. You believe it. Now, here's the sciency part. Let's talk about the brain's neuroplasticity.
Psychology today defines neuroplasticity as the brain's capacity to continue growing and evolving in response to life's experiences.
Plasticity is the capacity to be shaped, molded, or altered. So neuroplasticity then is the ability for the brain to adapt or change over time by creating new neurons and building new networks. So the ability to reorganize and adapt happens as we respond to life's experiences. So can this work against us when we constantly and consistently focus on negative labels?
This negative focus reinforces those neural pathways, kind of like a [00:13:00] hiking trail with a lot of use, it cuts deep, making it harder to break free from that path, to break free from the limitations that this self imposed negativity has built. So to put this in everyday language, when you follow a path, Over and over and over you build a rut, and sometimes a very deep rut that can be difficult, but my friend, not impossible to turn out of.
So, uh oh, what if your life is stuck in a deep rut of negativity? Now what? Have no fear. Let's talk about awareness. It is a beacon that pierces a ray of aha through the fog of negative self talk. So please pardon my mixed metaphors, um, by the way. My friend, I love metaphors.
They are verbal illustrations, and they're [00:14:00] a fun way to paint while you talk. See what I mean? So, you're going to see a lot of metaphors in my podcast. So, yeah, let's consider it a verbal mixed media, shall we? Back to you. to my mixed metaphors and our discussion. So remember the day that I was told, yes, Beth, you're always so busy.
I suddenly became aware of the negative label that I was proudly wearing. It was, this awareness was a piercing ray of light that shone through the fog of my negative self talk. Now imagine If we could become aware of these negative rots that we are stuck in, it would be great. Because our brains can realize we need a change and then our brains can begin to pivot.
It can start to build new pathways that will focus on positivity. [00:15:00] It's not easy, but it can be done because the brain is great at pivoting. If. It is aware that a pivot is required. . So building neuro pathways that focus on positivity, that's going to feed the good wolf, my friend.
So this is good news for flourishing your creativity. Becoming aware that we are being negative, this is the first step out of the rut towards dismantling these self erected barriers or these self dug ruts that stifle creativity. So imagine if on the day that I was proudly wearing my I'm so busy label.
If I would have chosen to focus on positivity in my life instead of, I'm so busy, my label could have been, right now I'm working through a project that is challenging, but I'm lucky to have work. See what I did there? It's the [00:16:00] same life. I was the same person, but I took my busy, tired stress labels and changed them from negative to positive.
So in essence, becoming aware of negative ruts and then purposely breaking free of a focus that limits our positivity, this means we can reclaim the narrative of our lives. and choose a path that allows creativity to prosper. It's about recognizing that beneath the layers of busy and tired and stressed, because we might actually still be busy and tired and stressed.
I mean, that's not going to go away, right? But beneath all of that lies a wellspring of creativity that is waiting to be released. So thinking positive instead of negative is like this. The negative focus label. Too busy. The positive focus label, that's a busy season, but I'm grateful that I've worked to do.
It [00:17:00] sounds easy, my friend, right? Switching from negative to positive, but seriously pulling yourself out of a rut that recycles negative thoughts over and over, whoo, that is not easy. But remember, I always try to give you a list of things to help you conquer a challenge. So here are some practical tips for shedding Negative labels.
Tip number one, occasionally do a label check in. So, regularly, just take a moment and assess the labels you've adapted. What are you wearing? What are your thoughts telling you? Now, we all have an inner critic that is super talkative. I know I do. And if allowed, they will spew some pretty awful vitriol at us.
I know my inner critic does. And when we let this negative banter be on loudspeaker all day and often all night, it's little wonder that we think we [00:18:00] need to wear a negative badge or badges. So what is your inner critic saying? Is it empowering you with positivity or is it limiting you with negativity?
Now, I'm going to tell you that most inner critics are pretty much always yelling all the bad things. And here's the first step is to just become aware that you don't have to listen to the negative inner critic in your head. 24 seven, three 65, uh, put a pin.
Tip number two, mindful language. Take a moment to think about the labels you've been using. What are you wearing? And if you've become aware that the labels you're wearing are pretty negative, purposely replace the I'm too busy with I'm grateful that I have work to do, or I am lucky I'm [00:19:00] blessed with a busy season, or , let's make hay while the sun shines.
And then watch and witness the shift in perspective that you'll get when you start looking at things that you might have thought were causing you problems as something that could actually be a blessing. You'll be feeding your good wolf and you'll start feeling. More positive and more creative. Tip number three, push away from society's accolades that reward negativity.
Tip number three, push away from society's accolades that reward negativity. Like, don't humble brag about being the person who stayed the longest at the office or did the most chores in the house.
Or the person who has the worst weather all the time. Be the person who puts your health, your happiness, and creativity in the front seat. Wear and talk about your [00:20:00] positive labels.
Tip number four. Practice gratitude, cultivate a habit of focusing on what you are grateful for, because these will be the positive things in your life and will be the positive labels that you'll wear.
So if redirected down a positive path, the mind will focus towards positivity as a default, and that makes positivity your new Rutt so get yourself stuck in a positivity rut. That's a goal, my friend. It's proven fact that writing down each day what you are grateful for can help you swing your thoughts towards a more positive focus.
So, my friend, how are you? Do you have a different answer now than you did when we first started chatting together today? I encourage you to consider the labels you have chosen to wear. [00:21:00] Think about turning down the volume of the negative banter from your inner critic and embrace a focus of positivity that will give you the freedom to create.
Let's liberate our creativity from those nasty chains of negative self talk. And then let's go, let's get out there and create today. Thank you so much for joining me on this episode of Create Today. If you found inspiration in our discussion, don't forget to subscribe and to share the Create Today podcast with your friends and family and neighbors. Until then. Embrace the positive and stay creative, my friend. Oh, and here's one more note from me, your sponsor.
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