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In the Coach This Thought series, I use thoughts pulled from my clients, and myself, to spark analysis and insight to create the space for a shift in thinking.
"Nobody wants me here."
First things first…
This is a pity party thought.
I’m not accusing you of throwing yourself a pity party. But your brain most certainly is throwing a pity party of the most dismal kind.
Why do our brains do this to us?
If you think a thought like this, you learned it from somewhere.
Thoughts, like life, have a beginning. Somewhere along the way, someone said something along the lines of “nobody wants you here,” and your brain bought it hook, line, and sinker.
In that moment, you may have tucked your tail between your legs and retreated, or told that person to shut up and stayed put, but a little seed of doubt was planted. And that seed made a nice, comfy home inside your head. It grew roots, sprouted, and even became inter-dependent on other seeds growing in the area. (Neurons fire and wire together.)
It grew into a thought you depended on.
In some way, the thought protected you. It allowed you to judge the social situations you were encountering. Going in with the thought of “nobody wants me here” keeps a person on high alert, and provides a pretty damn good excuse to not actually face your fears and experience the discomfort that a social setting can bring. The part of our brain we share with animals is highly concerned with being part of a group (like life and death concerned).
When we get all wrapped up inside our own heads, we resort to survival thinking. “Nobody wants me here” makes it all about YOU.
It’s time to call bullshit on this thought.
Any thought that we think in our own head is our own thought.
We are masters of projecting our thinking outward onto unsuspecting people that probably are not thinking the same thing, WHATSOEVER.
But when a thought becomes fully adopted by our brain, a magical trick happens:
It turns into a belief.
The thought becomes so strong, that we decide it must be reality. But it’s not. It’s just a neural network (collection of brain cells) firing off in our brain, producing thoughts, which then creates emotion and animates the body.
So now you’ve got to decide what you want to think.
Do you really want to go on believing that nobody wants you around?
If the answer is yes, that’s actually not surprising. We get very used to existing in our own stew of misery, and the thought of hopping in a different pot of stew can be scary.
But if the answer is no, the trick is to change the thought. And once you choose a new thought to think, it’s up to you to keep on thinking it.
You have to challenge yourself to think it anytime you would think the old thought. You have to think this new thought so much that the new seed grows roots, sprouts, and makes friends with other neurons. That takes a little bit of time, and the willingness to ignore the old thought.
But I’m telling you, if you stick to it, magic will happen.
A few replacement thought suggestions:
I am here now, and that’s good.
I can get curious about the other people here.
My life is better with friends.
Other people might actually like me.
If I pay attention, I might have fun.
It’s possibly someone could want me here.
And if you’re feeling bold:
Everybody wants me here!
Header Photo by Eutah Mizushima on Unsplash