Key Point: Learning how to “reframe” is a very powerful skill. Reframing is a term from psychology that is a metaphor for how we put a frame around a situation or tell a story about the things that happen to us. We apply interpretations to every situation we are in. The benefit from learning and practicing reframing is that we begin to realize that we have a choice in such interpretations and this gives us tremendous personal power. When we are negative and assign blame, we give much of that power away. Reframing is NOT about ignoring facts but it is about framing those facts in a way that puts your higher self in charge.
When you create an alternative story, it involves looking at something that one might normally view negatively through a different lense. A simple example could be when someone who causes an accident results in your being late for an important appointment. Instead of fuming at the incompetence of the driver ahead, you could reframe it by being relieved you’re safe and not in an accident yourself. By establishing an alternative story you can change your outlook.
When putting yourself in the role of the “bad guy,” you explore what it could be like in their spot. For example, you could be standing behind someone who cut in line for a taxi. What a jerk, right? But imagine you’re this “bad guy”, and really your wife is about to give birth to your first child and you need to get there. When we do that, we think about the other person and situation differently. And more importantly, we put our higher self completely in charge of interpretation.
- Learn to reframe and be in charge of your own interpretation.
- Practice the techniques of applying alternative stories and putting yourself in the shoes of the “bad guy.” You will benefit from engaging with increased compassion, and you will put that negative emoting and over dramatic ego, back in line.
- Take a moment each day to think about just one or two things you are grateful for, (just before you close your eyes at night or when your brushing your teeth in the morning may work). Pretty soon you will pile up an impressive gratitude list.
- Do the above and people will notice how you have rebalanced negativity in your life, daily attitude and behavior.
P.S. Read chapter 11 in SQ 21 for a more complete explanation of reframing along with exercises you can practice.
Reframing in the Triangle,