Pink Elephants and Red Rabbits

Most of us have a life story that defines us. Is yours one of tragedy, or one of hope?

My day job is working with numbers. One of my roles is as a certified divorce financial analyst, so I hear a lot of clients’ personal stories. Often, at least one of the partners in the marriage feels ripped off, betrayed, or hurt. That’s the story that currently defines them: as the spouse of someone who really screwed them over in some way.

Certainly, I am compassionate about such an intense and personal life transition, but my belief is that after living with bitterness for years post-trauma, people are best served by letting go of the anger. Otherwise, this negative attitude becomes the “elephant in the room” of your mind. Taking it a step further, I call it a “pink elephant,” after the saying that drunk people hallucinate about colored pachyderms.

Those negative stories you tell yourself usually trigger negative emotions, which cause the body to produce chemicals toxic for your immune system. There’s an actual physical impact to your body when you spend too much time wallowing in negativity. Neuroscience teaches us that thoughts form pathways in our brains, and the more a similar thought is recalled, the more ingrained the pathway.

How do you change that negative “thinking loop”? Envision your life story in a positive way: How do you see your best life? Instead of dwelling on what’s not working, keep imaginging the dreams you want to make a reality.

I call this reframed narrative a red rabbit. Rabbits are symbolic of abundance and comfort, and the color red is associated with power. Let’s activate your personal power to attract abundance to your life.

The strategy is to be conscious and aware of your thinking.  The ultimate goal is to be the constant observer of your thinking.  When you become conscious of the old story starting to take over your mental space, you shift to being the creator of your thinking instead of the reactor.  I actually tell my pink elephant, “Thank you for sharing,” and then choose to think about my red rabbit.

Try this out for yourself. I think you will like it.  One technique is to write out your pink elephant on a piece of paper.  Then on a separate paper write out a red rabbit, ignoring the evidence of the senses and use your imagination to project a life experience you would like to have. (Safely) burn the paper with the pink elephant story on it, and feel a sense of lightness as you see that mental burden literally disappear in smoke. Now you’re free to chase after your red rabbit – and bring happiness to your life.

Bill McRoberts

What kind of life do you want to live? What would bring you happiness and fulfillment? Those are the kinds of questions I try to help people answer. Years ago, I discovered my purpose is to be a positive influence in the lives of others, hence helping others is my definition of success. I’ve helped people for my whole career, but mostly with numbers. For the longest time, my world revolved around quantifiable data: college chemistry major; then jobs in insurance, real estate, and financial planning. Numbers are predictable. Life is not. I didn't expect this: In 2017 at a life planning seminar by the Kinder Institute, my outlook changed. The seminar suggested there is direct connection between our financial reality and the lives we want to live. The key is developing a “torch statement” and the five days were focused on how to develop that vision of the future that lights you up. Funny, how a small shift in perspective can trigger a big life change. My passion is now centered around helping create that positive vision for others. I put on monthly, free workshops to share what I have learned. As a supplement to that, I’m excited to blog about any other spiritual practices I’ve come across. I believe we all vibrate our energy into the universe, and in doing so, we create our world. Think positive, because your thoughts become your words become your actions. Inside each of us is a story of the life we would love to live. Find it. Make it your torch statement. Feel how it lights you up once you uncover it. I am grateful if I can be even a small part of helping you get there, and thank you for letting me live my own passion through you.

Bill McRoberts has 6 posts and counting. See all posts by Bill McRoberts

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