The Story I Made Up Is…

I think this really may be one of the biggest secrets of the Universe.  The secret to why some people with a lot of adversity in their lives are happy – and some with every advantage in the world are miserable.  It often (dare I say “almost always”) comes down to the stories we make up about what happened to us in our lives.

Example:  The Weather Muffin and I just started working out regularly again.  Accordingly, there are a lot of screaming muscles in both our bodies right now.  Some where, some how, I decided that the “meaning” of sore muscles was very positive.  That I should rejoice and leap for joy because that was a sign that wonderful things were happening.   So, when I heard John lamenting that his muscles hurt SO badly and that he was in such pain, I said, “Hooray!  Yeah!  Brilliant!”

He looked at me like I’d lost my mind and then said, “It doesn’t FEEL like a brilliant thing!”

Ahhh.  Feelings FOLLOW the story we make up about the facts!!!  It goes like this:

  1. There are observable facts
  2. We make up a story about (give meaning to) the facts
  3. Feelings come about as a result of the story we make up
  4. Our actions are then shaped by our feeling (we stop working out?)

My muscles still ache – but because I really believe that this is a good thing – I’m more likely to keep going for it.

Try this.  For the rest of the week, precede every judgment you make, about yourself, other people, or life in general, with “The story I made up is…”

You’ll begin to truly understand why you have the feelings that you have about certain things, and how those feelings have influenced your actions – which have gotten you certain results.

Start over.  Find SOME positive reason behind those facts.  Make up better stories.

You ARE the author of your own life!!!  Why not write a best-seller!!

From your motivational speaker Linda Larsen. The one with the ice pack on her shoulder!


Motivational Speaker Linda Larsen, CSP has been described by meeting planners and audiences as "hysterically funny," and "riveting." Known for her ability to connect on an authentic and emotional level with audiences, her spontaneous sense of humor, and her engaging and powerful stories, Linda is passionate about sharing ideas to help people live their finest, best, and most productive lives. Her riveting and true story of being kidnapped and held hostage at gunpoint by an escaped convict, and the strategies she used to escape, will give people the tools THEY need to rise above any of life's toughest challenges, to communicate more effectively with THEIR difficult person, and to find creative solutions to THEIR problems. To book motivational speaker, Linda Larsen: 941-927-4700

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  1. So true Linda!  I’ve had the exact same story with my husband about sore exercised muscles.  I think it’s a very positive thing (except when you literally cannot move!).  Thank you for suggesting I apply that thinking to other areas of my life!  Time to take a look at the old story and rewrite some chapters!

  2. Absolute truth. Scott and I love when our muscles ache (following a work-out) as we share your mind space. Other stories I need to rewrite….like when I’m sitting in O’Hare Airport yet again grounded on the runway for the third time in three weeks. Yet, I’m editing faster than before. So appreciate the genuine reminder that I get to control what I think, feel and do at every moment of every day.

  3. Great post, Linda. I love it when motivational speakers take something deep and make it practical. As I’m reading this blog post I am feeling guilty because I haven’t worked out in at least at week. But I decided to rewrite story of guilt and shame, and turn it into a story that points to all the things I did this week that were good. And in the process I am encouraged to work out, rather than guilted by having not.

  4. I love this post!  Our stories are powerful.  I know of a few stories that I’ve been telling myself need a bit of re-writing.  Thanks Linda!

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