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Elisa Goldstein, Ph.D.Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
A blog about mindfulness, stress-reduction, psychotherapy and mental health.

The Power of "I Can"

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. Updated: Apr 19th 2011

successIt’s time to take an audit of how our minds are focusing day to day around the phrases, “I can do” and “I can’t do.”

If you are to look back on the last day, week and month, how often has your mind focused on what you can’t do versus what you can do.

This may seem like a trivial task, but believe me it’s not.

Thoughts create actions and actions create consequences.

So from the thought, “I can’t” comes the unfolding of the rest of the moments and consequences of your life that reaffirm “I can’t.” In other words, this is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This affects you whether you're at home, at work, running an errand or on vacation. 

Try this as a little experiment:

Just for today, see what it’s like to focus on what you “can do” instead of what you “can’t do.”  So when you catch your mind shutting the door on possibilities, just ask, “Ok, so what can I do?”

Put all your lenses of judgment aside around this experiment and just see what happens. You may just be surprised.

As always, please share your thoughts, stories and questions below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles and is author of the upcoming book The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations.

Check out Dr. Goldstein's acclaimed CD's on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression, Mindful Solutions for Addiction and RelapsePrevention, and Mindful Solutions for Success and Stress Reduction at Work. -- "They are so relevant, I have marked them as one of my favorites on a handout I give to all new clients" ~ Psychiatrist.

If you're wanting to integrate more mindfulness into your daily life, sign up for his Mindful Living Twitter Feed. Dr. Goldstein is also available for private psychotherapy.

Reader Comments
Discuss this issue below or in our forums.

Good Article - David - Apr 21st 2011

Trying to change the way one views and interprets the world can be a very challenging thing for most people.  Let alone, someone suffering from a mental illness.

I really agree that changing your mindset and attempting to have a positive focus can really change the way one responds to treatment and should be an early step in the treatment process.

Good read!



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