Never before has it been so clear to me how much power I have over my own thoughts…that the way I see the world and myself is ultimately in my own control. Famous thinkers and writers have always said this and on some level I’ve always thought that it’s bullshit. Wouldn’t I be a more positive, relaxed person if I had the choice?

I’ve always felt very much the victim of whatever has been going on in my life, and whatever thought sequence has come about. What I hadn’t fully understood before is that I can’t hope to change my thoughts around just like that in one given moment. The way we think is a matter of consistency–it’s a long-term process. If I’ve been cultivating a foundation of negativity in my mind for days and weeks, months and years, I can be sure that one positive (i.e. accurate) thought that I try to force on myself will not take root. It will be a useless struggle, as my mind will only be fertile ground for negativity. If instead I consistently cultivate a foundation of positive thinking, productive and nourishing thoughts ensue naturally.

Initially though, changing one’s negative habit of thinking is hard work. Really hard work. I know this first-hand. Changing our thoughts seems to go against everything we are. The way we think is a product of everything that we’ve experienced in our lives: the influence of the people who brought us up, our peers, culture, media… In some ways, it can seem like the only constant in our lives; as if it’s our identity. But, I think that we can’t become who we truly are meant to be until we free our minds of negative programming.

Spoon boy: Do not try and bend the spoon. That’s impossible. Instead… only try to realize the truth.
Neo: What truth?
Spoon boy: There is no spoon.
Neo: There is no spoon?
Spoon boy: Then you’ll see, that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.

–The Matrix

Reality truly is what we make it.