By Lauren Denos: 8/4/2014 (Mindset)

What you focus on expands! Have you ever heard this statement? Simply put, whatever we put our attention on is what we are going to get more of, but there are some caveats.

Just because you are constantly thinking about a topic such as fitness does not mean you are automatically going to be getting fitter. This is because it is also about how you are thinking about a topic. It is important to be thinking about what you have verses the lack of it. For example, if you are thinking about how you are not getting the good results you want and how you are not as fast at your running as you would like to be, then all you are thinking about is your lack of progress; since that is all you are going to notice, you will cultivate more of it. You cannot even see when you are  making good progress when all you are focused on is the lack of it.

On the other hand, if you focus on what you have accomplished so far and what you are looking forward to, you are putting focus on the positive. When you focus on what is good, that is what you wind up seeing more of and therefore get more of.

This is one of the reasons I tell people to focus on a goal that is not weight loss. It is not that having a goal of losing weight is bad, but most people with a goal of weight loss tend to think about how much weight they need to lose and how they are not happy with where they are. This is not conducive thinking. When we tend to focus on goals like running our first marathon we tend to think about how we have gotten up to 5 miles, how far we have come, how proud of ourselves we are and how we know we can keep going. This kind of thinking keeps you on track.

Another way to think of this is the old adage your energy flows where you attention goes. Look at your life. Where do you spend your time? What do you spend most your time thinking about? This is important stuff to know because where you put your attention is where your life is headed. Good or bad. You have the ability to change where you are headed at any time. But you must first be aware of what is going on with your thoughts and make a conscious decision to change them. Then you can take charge and change your life to be what you want it to be. Do not worry about why you were thinking a certain way in the past, or why your life is the way it is now. Just make a decision to take charge and decide NOW that you can create what you want and start to focus your thoughts on your desires. You may get the negative voices in your head creeping in but that is okay, just realize that they are there, and make the choice to switch back to the good thoughts of what you do have and what you are happy with.

Obviously this is not just something to use for your health and fitness, but something to use on your whole life. When you focus and comment on how wonderful your spouse is you tend to get more of that good feeling coming in, it just keeps building.  When you focus on the things you love about your job, it builds and you tend to get more of that happy feeling about your job and really start to enjoy your days again. The point is when you focus on what you want, that tends to be what you get.

Here is a little tip: if you are having a hard time thinking about what you want, or those negative voices about what you want keep chiming in, then just think positive in general. Maybe what you want to focus on is better health but you keep getting the voices saying, "No, you are not doing great, that person in front of you is doing so much better than you". Then just think of anything positive in your life, anything at all. What this does, is at least puts the attention on the positive going on in your life and from that more positive will continue to flow. Eventually you will be so good at the positive thinking that even the most difficult subject will be easy for you to focus positively on.

Test this out, for 1 month do not complain, bad mouth or talk negative in any way. If you have something bad to say, do not say it. Instead talk about the good things in your life. Instead of bad mouthing a co-worker, talk about the things that are good about that co-worker. Think about the good in every situation you have. For example if you are stuck in bad traffic, well at least you get to listen to some good music! You get the idea. So test it out, I bet your life starts to look a whole lot better!



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