The Art of Positive Thinking

“I think, therefore I am”

Rene Descartes coined that phrase around 1637 and it simple means that thinking about one’s existence proves—in and of itself—that “I” exist to do the thinking.

I believe “I think, there for I am” has an everyday practical effect on all our lives.

We are always thinking, thinking positive and negative things every day.

What makes us think positive and negative thoughts, I believe is a term called “Auto-suggestion” auto-suggestion is a psychological technique developed by Emile Coue in the 20th century.

Hypnotist`s use auto-suggestion to create and stimulate a person’s imagination.

For example if I give you the reader an auto-suggestion by saying the word “Banana” what is the first thought that pops into your head?

It does not matter if you came up with a yellow banana, a gorilla or anything.

The fact is whatever your thought was; it was directly influenced by my auto-suggestion.

Our lives are full of auto-suggestions they come to us audibly and visually and kinaesthetically; we are constantly absorbing them into our conscious and subconscious minds.

An example of a negative auto-suggestion might be when we look in the mirror and think that we are overweight and we feel a range of emotions from being frustrated, angry, sadness and so on.

This negative imagery is related to all the times we see and hear about how being overweight is not healthy, not socially acceptable or it could be comparing one’s self to models in a magazine.

It is sad to think how easy it is for people to be sucked in by negative auto-suggestions, to fall victim to such suggestions when it does not have to be that way.

When playing competitive sports you have both people and circumstances working towards you or against you, by circumstances I mean things like the weather, playing conditions and so on.

It is the whole purpose of your opponent to be working against you, thus given you the most negative auto-suggestions they can give to try to beat you.

Using tennis as the metaphor, your opponent hitting a winner against you gives the auto-suggestion that they are strong and you are weak, they are better and you are not.

Or a powerful negative auto-suggestion is when someone stares at you, feelings of insecurity can creep in.

There are a million and one positive and negative auto-suggestions thrown our way every day.

We have the ability to absorb or push away these auto-suggestions, using mental imagery, imagine holding a baseball bat and a negative auto-suggestion is coming your way bundled into a baseball.

You swing as hard as you can and you knock it out of the ball park

If you carried your imaginary baseball bat with you every day you could protect yourself from being sucked in by negative auto-suggestions. Some may get in, but at least you have a tool that can protect you.

I believe that if someone says an audible auto-suggestion and you don`t audible say something back to knock it out of the ball park or push it away, then you will absorb it.

For example if someone said I could not do something then I would say “Yes I can” I would not just remain silent and nod my head in agreement.

It is very important to recognize negative auto-suggestions and how to stop them from being absorbed into you.

When you do this you have mastered the art of positive thinking.

Try it and you will be surprised.

Stewart Whicker

Head Coach/Program Director

Expert Racquet Academy