“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you’d never think a negative thought again.”
I always knew that running was good for me, but I never knew that it could actually be therapy until today. Midway through my run this evening, I was getting discouraged by my pace. Lots of little criticisms filled my head until I remembered the above quote I’d read about the power of our thoughts.
And then the most bizarre battle ensued.
“You’re ruining this run with your negative thoughts!” Instead of turning things around, my mind went the other direction. I started chiding myself for my attitude, both past and present. “It’s no wonder you’ve always been so slow; your thoughts are powerful and your thoughts have always told yourself how slow you are.” Then every single perceived personal shortcoming joined the collective swarm of self-criticism buzzing around in my head. Oh my gracious. Then, just to continue the spiral, the criticisms a few other people have had for me amped up the volume — stuff that I didn’t even know was bothering me. This was not making for a fun run.
But suddenly out of nowhere, the words, “You have a good soul. I can tell,” interrupted the chaos. Just like that, my brain became silent and the swarm stopped. These were the words a stranger said to me a few years ago. Self-confidence has always been a learning process for me and this unexpected comment came during a particularly difficult time. I remember walking away from that brief conversation holding back tears of relief. I have a good soul. He could tell. The momentum of negativity had been broken. I knew I could recover my misplaced self-worth.
I’ve carried those words with me ever since and I pull them out of my mental pocket when I need them. Like today. You have a good soul. Remember? He could tell. For several minutes, I jogged through tears of relief. Positivity and gratitude carried me the rest of the way home.
To the man who unknowingly continues to help me when I get wobbly, thank you for reminding me there are good people in the world. And thank you for reminding me that I’m one of them.
To anyone who happens to be reading this: You have a good soul. I can tell. Carry that thought with you always.
(Above photo fits this post for the funniest reason. I’d texted it to my son to see if he saw a snail. He saw a thumb’s up. In light of positive thinking and running, I’m going with my son’s interpretation.)