When I sat down to write this morning, I had a completely different topic in mind.

But after writing about my fear of dying average, I watched a little Instagram Story from someone I follow which tied in perfectly with that message and I knew I wanted to share it.

That person’s name is Samantha Skelly, and she was sharing a snippet from a talk she delivered recently at The Bliss Project.

In her talk, Samantha was talking about the power of identities, which can be both a good or a bad thing.

A lot of my work and writing focuses on the good side (creating what Todd Herman likes to call your Alter Ego), but I wanted to focus on the negative side for a second.

See, what Samantha was sharing is that our ego loves to put things in a neat little box and give it a label.

That’s why when we’re not operating at our best, we end up saying things to ourselves like “I am anxious”, for example.

Instead, what we wanna do is shift from an identity point of view to an experience point of view.

That looks a little more like: “I’m experiencing some anxiety,” or “I’m noticing the feeling of anxiety.”

Then, and this is the big key to all this, we want to get really good at using that feedback as an indication that something’s not quite in alignment and taking action to get back on track.

When we do, the anxiety (or whatever it is you’re experiencing) actually becomes a gift that helps you identify these early warning signals, rather than a burden. 

Or, as Samantha says, emotion becomes data 🙂

Going back to my fear of dying average, here’s what that would look like:

“Oh, that’s interesting, I’m noticing the feeling that I’m going to die average (again). Thanks, awareness! What’s really going on here? Oh yeah, I haven’t been sleeping properly so my mood is lower than it could be. Let’s take a nap and prioritize bedtime tonight.”

By treating that thought as part of my identity rather than simply an experience, I would end up taking actions that aligned with the belief that I am, in fact, going to die average. 

Which, in turn, would only provide more experiences that serve to confirm that belief.

The good news?

You are not your thoughts.

If you notice yourself thinking something less than ideal, you have the power to change it.

Or, at the very least, use it as feedback that something needs a little work.


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