Life is great! You’ve got a goal! You start the journey to reach that goal filled with unlimited ambition. All of your moves are coming naturally to you. Your mind is overflowing with great ideas, and you’ve got the energy to execute them. Now, you’ve gained momentum. As a result, you’re more motivated than you ever were before. There is no negative thinking in sight.
Just like the shock of a warm shower turning ice cold from an errant toilet flush, in an instant, your ambition is dead.
What happened? Where did your mojo go?
This it the messy part of change and the ants are marching.
Somebody questioned your idea, or they’re demanding more of your time. Maybe you’ve lost focus for a moment. Perhaps you’ve just got tired or sick. Unfortunately, that high you had starting down the path to achieving your goal has become a depressing low. Eventually, you give up chasing your goal.
When you suffer a disruption in the pursuit of a dream, the first thing that hits you are the negative thoughts of self-doubt. The excuses, the blame and the shame all come into frame and they are called automatic negative thoughts or ANTs. These ANTs live in our mind, nesting deep within our brain. They are relentless, hard-working and opportunistic; they love the sweet smell of decaying ambition. The moment the ANTs spot an opening to feast on your dream, they come out of their nest in numbers and attack.
Ants are all around us and inside of us.
We all know that ants are a hardy bunch. They find their home in just about every corner of the earth. They’re everywhere! Estimates peg the ant population at 10 trillion so there are enough for each human to have 1,500 following them around. Come to think about it, we could have just about as many negative thoughts running amuck in our heads at any given time. And, like real ants, it’s impossible to kill them all.
Even the most successful people on the planet aren’t immune to ANT infestations from time to time. They are just successful because they’ve become more relentless than the ANTs in their head. So, when you feel defeated, depleted and cheated the ANTs will try to come out and devour your dream. You must keep pushing ahead. The only way to rid your mind of the ANTs is to outwork and undermine them. Take back control from negative thinking, by giving your head a shake and trudging ahead.
Negative thinking is not the truth.
Understand that negative thinking is just a thought; it’s not reality. Your reality is what you believe to be true. Thus, your reality changes when you are chasing down a goal in life, and your mind doesn’t like that. Change is uncomfortable. So, if you believed in self-doubt before, your mind will trick you into going back to that reality. That is where it found comfort in the past.
You have to resist the power of the ANTs. Don’t allow something as intangible as a thought -a tiny electric pulse in your brain- to become your reality. The difference between the ants in your garden and the ANTs in your mind is that the ants in your garden are real. The ones in your head are not. Don’t let the ANTs win! Outwork them. Life always rewards those who are persistent.