According to science, you have a default mode and a direct mode, around half the time in your life, you are in default mode, after a narcissistic relationship, the way the narcissist spoke to you, might be the way you talk to yourself or they might be in your head all of the time, as you’re ruminating about your past.
You’re default mode is needed as it’s, when you’re on autopilot, going about your day to day business, doing what needs to be done, with random thoughts popping into your head as you go about your day.
The direct mode is when you consciously think about something on purpose, make yourself get up and do something.
Resetting your mind after a narcissistic relationship is a process, because of those limiting beliefs and negative thoughts that have been planted into your subconscious mind, your default mode might be working against you. Narcissistic abuse programmes your mind over a long period of time, which you repeat. Just because someone in your past trained you to think this way, or they did so many bad things to you, your mind can now be trained to assume and predict the worst, doesn’t mean it’s how you have to think, you have no control how others talk to you or treat you, you have a choice in what you do about it.
Suppose you allow your default mindset to continue thinking. Why me? What else could go wrong? I’m not happy? I can not do this? I’m a loser? I’m not worthy? I’ll never be good enough? No one will love me? Does no one care about me? I’m a failure? The problem is these thoughts have gone into your default mode, and they shouldn’t be there. They are unwanted, thoughts, limiting beliefs, that hold you back. You can change this default mode of negative thoughts into positive ones.
Bad things will happen, that’s life, life can be cruel, and it can be hard, I do not deny that you’ve experienced that.
We do need a default mode, for certain thing we go about doing in our day to day lives. So we don’t have to think about the simple tasks, so we can just get on with them without too much thought, to the point as we are getting dressed we might not think about putting our top over our head it’s automatically done, as we’ve done it so many times it’s automatic, it’s the default, leaving our mind to wander off and think of other things, which is useful when it’s helpful, not so good when those thoughts are harmful to our happiness.
When you know you want to change your life, that you need to make changes in your life, but then when you start to think about change. Then you stop thinking about the change required and why to start worrying about all the things that could possibly go wrong and go back to default mode. So ask yourself now. How well is life working for me right now? Are things getting any better right now? Am I happy? Am I safe? When you carry on doing what you’re doing, how you are right now, and it changes nothing, or you can change how you think, then you’ve taken the first step to change everything. You’ve just got to work at it and believe in yourself. When you change how you think, you can change how you feel. You will make significant changes in your life.
Like when you learn to ride a bike, it takes time to learn to balance, pedal and drive yourself forward, it takes practice to get the momentum going, you might wobble, you might fall, you might have to get up and go again and again until you just do it, there are those who just get it the first time and those who don’t.
Learning to swim, thinking about the movements, the strokes. Going through that water and learning that technique, takes time until one day, you just do it. Then even when you’ve done it, you can challenge yourself on your speed.
If you naturally kick a ball with your right foot, you go into autopilot to do so. It still takes practice to get good at kicking that ball, training, time, drive and determination. It’s going to be harder to learn if it’s not something you want to do when you want to do something, it’s easier to keep going on those days you don’t feel so good, ask yourself what feeling am I looking for? What do I enjoy? What do I care about?
Even on autopilot learning to kick with your right foot, it feels comfortable. It feels effortless, however, to better your game, you can make yourself kick that ball with your left foot.
You have to deliberately direct your thoughts to kick that ball with the other foot, to learn how to swim, how to ride a bike, it takes time to learn any new skill. It takes practice, practice, and practice. You will feel uncomfortable. It will feel unnatural, you will miss kick, it will not be as powerful as your usual foot, your legs might ache, you might get tired, and sometimes we need to rest, however, if we genuinely want to do it, we find the time to get up and go again, we feel pride when we master something, disappointment when we don’t. We can use that disappointment to drive us forward. ￼
It’s precisely the same as making yourself think about things in a more positive way. It will feel strange and uncomfortable at times, and it will feel unnatural. You need to think optimistic, and you need to support your own thoughts, you need to think positive, you need to think it is possible, then you need to work on it.
It’s going to be a process that takes time, you will have setbacks along the way when you don’t see great change, but you must keep going. Keep changing, keep learning and keep growing. Sometimes you have to stop and look at how far you’ve come then recognise that achievement, to show yourself that you can, from where you started to where you are.
You have the choice, to either carry on with your default, or you can deliberately choose what you want to think about.
Being a deliberate thinker is a skillset, just like learning to swim, learning to ride a bike, kicking that ball, it’s a skill, and you have to practice and keep on practising until you master it.
You can do it. The autopilot is great on the right things. It is horrible on the wrong thoughts.
When you change how you think, you will change your life, for the better.
Whatever it is that’s stopping you right now. Whatever is your limiting beliefs you need to write them all down.
However, that person made you feel.
Any of those setbacks you’ve had.
I don’t deserve any better?
I’m not good enough?
Can I not trust anyone?
It’s just too hard?
My hearts had enough?
I don’t know how to start rebuilding my life?
Whatever they are, whatever got programmed into your default mode, you need to see them all write them all down.
Now you need to ask yourself, what have these beliefs cost me in my past? Then write that down. What do they cost me today? Then write those down. If I don’t change what are they going to cost me over the coming days, weeks months and years? Write them all down.
Now you know how that default mindset is affecting your day today, you need to do a reprogram how you think. Every-time old limiting beliefs come to your mind, catch that negative default mindset thought, take control back of your mind, then deliberately, direct a good thought into your mind. You need to do a mindset reset. Take back control of your own mind and your own life.
To start when that what if? Followed by something negative. Look for something positive, what if I fail needs to be, what if I succeed, then follow the thoughts of what will happen when you succeed, remember good ones as you’ve succeeded.
You no longer have to live your life with thoughts that no longer serve you, those thoughts that have been trained into you by another who wanted to see you fail. You are free to change that and live your life how you want to.
No more “No one will ever love me.”
Now it’s “The right people will always love me.”
No more “I don’t even know where to start.”
Now it’s “I’m going to take small daily steps each and every day, slowly but surely turning my life around.”
No more “I’m not good enough.”
Now it’s “I’m good enough for me, and the right people will understand me.”
No more. “I don’t trust anyone.”
Now it’s. “I trust my instinct.”
No more “What if.”, ending with “what if ( something bad happens)” go for “What if (something great happens.)”
“The significant problems we face can not be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.” – Albert Einstein
Keep trying new things, keep going, you’ve got this.
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Elizabeth Shaw is not a Doctor or a therapist. She is a mother of five, a blogger, a survivor of narcissistic abuse, and a life coach, She always recommends you get the support you feel comfortable and happy with. Finding the right support for you. Elizabeth has partnered with BetterHelp (Sponsored.) where you will be matched with a licensed councillor, who specialises in recovery from this kind of abuse.
Detaching your thoughts.