Wisdom of Wolves
An old Indian chief was teaching his Grandson about life. He said, “There are two wolves fighting inside each of us. One is evil. It is pride, greed, anger, jealousy, hate, and resentment, while the other is good. It is love, humbleness, faith, hope, happiness, and courage.”
The Grandson asked, “Which wolf wins?”
The Chief replies, “The one you feed!”
Think about which wolf you are feeding.
Here is some food to feed our good wolf:
- Make a goal, a small achievable goal.
The key to making lasting change is to break things down into small achievable goals. We have a tendency to jump from point A to point Z and then we become overwhelmed. If we move from point A to point B, in small achievable increments we feel a sense of accomplishment even if it is a small one. When you move slowly along, achieving small goals, you will be able to connect the dots eventually and will have a solid line from point A to point Z.
- In dropping an old behavior, put a new one in it’s place
Behaviors that have been done over and over again become a habit. A habit is performed almost mindlessly or effortlessly throughout the day. If you drop that habit without replacing it with a new better behavior, there exists a slice of time in your life that just begs you to go back to the old habit. So, put another habit in it’s place.
- Making Good
A trigger is anything that reminds you of a behavior, good or bad. Making good triggers, or reminders is important to develop new, good habits. It is important to choose a trigger that will alert you to do the behavior at the right time and in the right place. Until you have developed your habit, your trigger will be there to remind you. For example, you want to drink more water. Leave your glass out by the sink to remind you. Leave a note in the appropriate spot, a signal, or even set a reminder on your phone, but you get the point. Triggers are crucial to developing new habits.
4. Ambiguity or Uncertainty
Be specific what new behavior you want to develop or stop doing. Being uncertain leaves room for our ego to sabotage us. And remember, it is just a small achievable set to start out with, but make sure you know exactly what it is and how it will affect you in the long run. Knowledge is power. Ambiguity or uncertainty is an excuse for us to procrastinate.
5. Take it one day at a time
Be patient with yourself. Tell yourself you will make it through this day. Then when you do it is a notch on your belt. Set your goal for the next day. “I can make it through this day as well. Might just be “I can make it through the next hour”, or the next meal, or the next meeting. It can be overwhelming thinking of doing this certain behavior forever. When breaking it down, and bringing ourselves back to the present moment, doing the behavior for that moment or that day seems very manageable. Saying we are never eating sugar again seems almost overwhelming. Our ego gets in our way trying to sabotage us by saying “wait, what about your Granddaughters birthday in 3 months?!?” But, if we say, I’m not eating sugar at this meal, it seems very doable. Or, even break it down into minutes or hours. I’m not eating any sugar in the next hour. A small achievable goal. Be the wolf, the strong, confident, powerful wolf. You can do it!
Make it a game…Wisdom of Wolves
Our thoughts determine our feelings. Putting too much thought into negative feelings is feeding that bad wolf, (as well as our bad ego). Thoughts become feelings which influences our performance. Try thinking of those negative thoughts and events as a game. A game you control. In order to win you have to make a positive move or thought. This can make you feel empowered. A game you can win with just a few positive moves.
In feeding that good wolf, you must learn to identify the thoughts or actions that are a problem to you. Never think “I suck”, “I’m not good enough”. You are good enough, you don’t suck, stomp on those thoughts! Make that positive move with positive self-talk and challenge that bad wolf; “Bring it on sucker!” , watch those negative thoughts float into the clouds and disappear, or even better yet, watch the good wolf devour those bad thoughts, she rips them apart and in doing so feeds the good wolf. Check mate, game won. Acknowledge the mistakes you make, learn from them, and tell yourself they are done.
Negative people feed the bad wolf inside you. Do not for one second let their comments affect you. Don’t play into their negativity! They want you to react, they want to hurt you. They aren’t worth the energy you are spending worrying. Let their negativity go. You are in charge of this game. What they say cannot penetrate your thick coat. In your mind, watch your thick wolf’s coat repel the negativity, make no comment, smile and the good wolf is fed, and checkmate another positive move.
The good wolf needs to breathe. Take a slow deep breath, sucking in all the strength of the universe. The Universe offers all it’s strength if we ask. In your mind as you inhale slowly, ask for strength and feel the healing energy fill your lungs. Exhale slowly blowing out all the negative energy. Do this several times when you feel anxious. Relaxation, it is a positive move in your game.
Your game takes practice. Remember, start slow. You will eventually learn the all moves that help you the most.
You be the good wolf in your mind! Play the game and win!