By Frosty Wooldridge:
Back in our college years, my younger brother cut himself shaving one morning. He bled all over the washbasin. Blood ran down his neck and into the drain.
He yelled, “Howard, you stupid expletive, expletive and more expletives! How can one man be so stupid? You’re an idiot moron dufus!”
“Aren’t you being a little hard on yourself bro?” I said.
“I’m an idiot for slicing up my face,” he replied.
At the time, I took a psychology course for my teaching certificate. In that class, the professor lectured on “parent tapes” and how children suffer “scripting” from their parents. Every child’s brain acts like a computer. It downloads everything parents do or say in front of their children.
When kids grow up in abusive and verbally violent homes, they download such speech and physical behaviors. Later, they act them out. They hang with others who express themselves in a similar fashion. It’s called “group bonding” that allows for identity for each individual.
When a child grows up in the ghetto, his or her brain downloads a lot of unfortunate life lessons. In my twenties, I taught two years in the inner city. I watched parents and their kids interact at teacher parent conferences. Good parents sent good, healthy and confident kids to school. Poor parents sent angry, frustrated and indolent children to school.
Those kids faced lifetimes of struggle because their inner lives manifested in their outer lives. Such individuals become bullies or victims. They become drug dealers or teen pregnancies.
When I taught in nicer schools with educated parents who enjoyed good jobs and nice neighborhoods, they sent positive-minded kids to my classrooms. Those children flourished in art, science, math, history and chemistry. They joined clubs to dance, act and create paintings.
No matter which kind of parents brought you up, in the end, today, you must take responsibility for your actions. You can “rewrite” your tape scripts from flawed ones to noble ones.
I said to my brother after he patched up his face, “Wouldn’t it be a better idea to say something more positive like ‘silly boy, I need to slow down while shaving to save my face from the razor’s haste.’”
“You know something brother,” he said. “I think you’re right. I’m going to speak highly of myself during life lessons. I’m a cool dude so I might as well grow from such lessons via a razor blade.”
“That’s my bro,” I said.
While my brothers and I enjoyed great parents who supported us, it’s easy to condemn yourself for doing “stupid” things or making a “mistake” that causes you rebuke yourself. So how many ways do you chastise yourself?
Let’s change “self-punishment” by creating a new positive “script” that we write into our brains daily by our choices.
- Think positive, act positive, feel positive and speak positively in everything you do every day. That means to catch yourself if you fall into negative thoughts or actions stemming from anything that happens to you. Once you climb onto the “positive” thought train, your inner life leads to your outer expression in positive ways.
- Create enhanced energy actions that promote your highest and best. You may “rewrite” your scripts no matter how negative in the past. Make sure you avoid blaming anyone for your current situation. Take full responsibility and move toward changing your personal conditions with your actions.
- Associate, work and play with other positive people. Avoid gossipy people, condemning people and negative people. Leave their influence by departing their arenas.
- When you fail at something, learn from it and move forward. When you fall, make sure you fall forward. Get up, dust yourself off and move with a positive attitude to your next challenge.
- Pick some historical figure who inspires you. Understand they faced enormous difficulties, too. Make their strengths yours!
I am inspired by the late comedian Robin Williams who said, “Please, don’t worry so much. Because in the end, none of us have very long on this Earth. Life is fleeting. And if you’re ever distressed, cast your eyes to the summer sky when the stars are strung across the velvety night. And when a shooting star streaks through the blackness, turning night into day… make a wish and think of me. Make your life spectacular. I know I did.”
Whom do you admire? Make your life as spectacular just like they did by changing your inner life to enhance your outer life.
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