Our stories have a lot of power.
Have you ever stopped to notice the stories that run through your mind?
Yesterday, we went for a walk but the trail we headed for was packed.
So we found a little side street, parked and walked on a trail. There was no one around but then a couple appeared behind us.
My daughter commented that they seemed creepy and were walking quite fast.
I didn’t think much of it.
But then heard their footsteps approach faster and noticed as I started running stories.
I thought of horror story scenarios.
They must have seen an opportunity to rob or attack a vulnerable family with no one around and our truck far away.
I didn’t really engage with the stories but found it interesting where my mind went.
We found a little exit onto the road where we’d parked and as we started walking toward our truck, I noted the couple walking and their fast pace.
If I’d let my mind and the stories go wild, it would have sent my heart racing, my palms sweating, and I would have picked up my pace.
The Plot Thickens
A few minutes later my partner, not knowing the stories I was now playing out in my head, looked back and mentioned that the couple had followed us back onto the road.
This could have been the confirmation I needed that we were being followed.
All of a sudden, we could hear ATVs and I noticed the story shift that we were now safe because there were people around.
When we got back to the truck, we sat and waited for our daughter to take her jacket off and buckle up and the couple approached and got into their vehicle parked ahead of ours.
Notice the Power of Your Stories
I have been learning to witness the thoughts and stories created and work hard not to engage with them.
But from this example, you can see how easily the stories we create can run wild.
I share this to encourage you to observe your thoughts.
Notice the response in your body when you engage.
Recognize that you are a master storyteller and you will make up stories all.of.the.time.
And also note that it is possible for you to create new stories.
As in the example above, I could have changed the story that this couple was lonely and hoping to catch up to chat.
Or that they were actually just trying to get a good workout in, hence their fast pace, and that they, like us, were avoiding the crowd.
See how different that story is?
And that is the power of our stories.