Last post, I talked about one of the cognitive reframes I’ve experienced that has helped me engage in a more grounded, present way of life.
As a reminder, a cognitive reframe is a shift in the mindset so you can approach situations from a new perspective. The ones that I will share with you are small shifts you can make in common approaches we have to things that will hopefully have beneficial impacts for you.
Last week was a shift from focusing on my to-do lists to asking myself what needs my presence. This week, I take a look at right and wrong thinking.
Black-and-white thinking is a natural line of thinking when we are younger and one that we can find ourselves staying in for a variety of reasons. One of those reasons is that it can provide a source of comfort in its simplicity. How simple would things be if everything fit into two nice, neat, separate groups?
But, what tends to happen is that the older you get the more you realize these two, simple groups just don’t encapsulate everything. Which is what I call, “welcome to the grey.” What was initially overwhelming for me has turned into an appreciation and enjoyment that things are not so simple and rarely can they be divided into two, simple groups.
It was in the midst of this journey that I came across Glennon Doyle’s book “Untamed.” One thing that Glennon talks about is shifting from asking ourselves what is right and wrong and instead asking what is true and beautiful?
I find this question encourages me to turn inward and seek what feels most attuned to my being and values. In contrast, asking myself what is right and wrong encourages me to turn more external and evaluate what others would label my options.
Turning to this line of thinking has not necessarily led me to make vastly different choices than I would have made before, but it has allowed me to feel much more confident, grounded and more present in the moment as I know I am choosing what is true and beautiful to me. So, next time you find yourself in the midst of needing to make a decision, I encourage you to step into the beauty of the grey and transition from what is right and wrong to what is true and beautiful.
Kylie Larson, MA, LPC