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How To Restructure Your Sentences

Feb 13, 2023

We talk to ourselves throughout the day, sometimes consciously and sometimes subconsciously. How we talk to ourselves affect our emotions, which will influence our actions. The more we are aware of the sentences in our head, the more ready we can decide if we want to keep a particular sentence or not.

Let us look at an example. I will use myself. In the past, I used to think that sentences or thoughts would just come up because of the situation I was in, and those were set. I did not think there would be other options, and I attributed it to be the way I was raised, the way I was wired.

Look at a typical weekday. I used to say these sentences: I have to wake up early in the morning. I have to go to work. I have to see many patients. I have to finish my work day as soon as possible so I can see my kids.

How does that feel when you are reading these sentences? These were my actual thoughts. Writing them just now makes me feel heavy. It is as though I have all these obligations and no way of avoiding them. It feels restricted and constricted. This way of starting my day was not an encouraging way to keep going to me. I felt trapped, stuck, as if I had no other choice.

There is always a choice. It is just a matter of if you would consider the alternative to be an option you would take. Or sometimes you do not realize the options are out there. It is the same with your sentences. Those default sentences you form in any given situation are not set in stone. You have the power to change them.

Let us go back to my typical weekday. How can I change those sentences? Instead of saying “I have to”, substitute it with “I get to”. I get to go to work. I get to see many patients. I get to finish my work day as soon as possible so I can see my kids.

Reading those sentences makes me feel more hopeful, more empowered. Those obligations seem to be choices I am making to do. The situation is the same, but restructuring those sentences makes me feel more light-hearted. When we do things from the feeling of hope, empowerment to light-heartedness, you are likely going to be happier, more creative and more efficient. When you feel that you are in control (because you get to choose what to do), you are going to be more decisive. You are going to be more confident of yourself and your actions. You are going to be more ready to face more obstacles and do them.

Before you start your day, I invite you to think of the things you are going to do, not so much as a “have-to” list, but reframe it to be your “get-to” list. That way, you will be more willing to get those things done, feel empowered, and face another day with hope, gratitude and content.

Are you ready to stop feeling stressed and overwhelmed? Are you ready to have more time to do what you want?


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