I was fortunate in High School to have the wrestling coach I had.  He had earned his spot on the U.S. Olympic Team.  So as you can guess discipline was not a problem for him.  One thing that he taught me was how to react.

In my first practice, he told me to get ready in my stance.  Then instructed my opponent to attack me at a slow speed.  He then taught me the following steps.

Step 1 – Hook the arm

Step 2 – Drop to one knee

Step 3 – Throw the opponent over my shoulder

Just knowing that was not enough.  For what seemed like endless days I had to perform that series of steps over and over.  Letting it go through my head.  Step 1, Step 2, Step 3.  The coach had me perform these steps until it seemed 2nd nature.

By the time I had my first match something amazing happened.  When my opponent charged me I didn’t think Step 1, Step 2, Step 3.  Instead, I just reacted and my opponent went sailing through the air.

He had taught me the right steps.  We rehearsed them so much that they became ingrained in me. I know longer had to think about them. Now I reacted with power and confidence.

We could have just as easily trained using the wrong steps.  Then I would have internalized the wrong moves.   My reaction then would have set things in a negative light.  I would have instead been the one flying through the air and landing on their back.  I might also have injured myself.

The same thing happens in life.  Defining moments in our lives that bring hurt or pain teach us to react.  This is generally a negative reaction.  It affects us deeply and we hold on to that pain or fear.  It seems to become grafted onto our DNA.  Those reactions can move into anxiety, depression and also manifest into physical sickness.

Conditioning ourselves in the right ways will bring positive results. Yet, most people do not work on that.  This is because it takes great effort on our part to change.  The vast majority of us do not like change.  But putting in the effort to learn to react to life the right way is our salvation many times.

For instance what if you trained yourself daily to look at failure as a learning tool.  Perhaps it might be training your heart to forgive hurt instead of holding on to it.

One of the greatest areas is positive thinking.  The average person has hundreds of negative thoughts a day.  They don’t realize the weight that this brings upon their shoulders.

Changing your thoughts from negative to positive is achievable.  You just have to make the effort to keep track of negative thoughts and then change them.  The end results are more than worth the effort.

Some ways you can do this are:

  • Read a passage daily about love or gratitude

  • Keep a small notebook with you every day.  Write down the negative thought and then counter it with a realistic positive one

  • Watch a motivational video about the subjects on youtube

  • Spend some time in meditation each day.  Picture how you would want to handle a situation in a positive way.  What are the steps? If you don’t know then do some research. If you followed these how would things change for the better?

I challenge you to make this effort and log the results over time in a journal.   When life hits you with a lost job, a breakup or tragic event you will react in a much better way than you have in the past.

What situations have you handled negatively in the past?  What actions did that set in motion that affected you or those you love in a negative way?  What do you wish you had done differently? Those may be your steps.