I’ve been running Personal Development Seminars now for over fifteen years and still, after all these years practicing what I preach, I wake up some mornings plagued with useless thoughts – or the little rascals come after me during the day when I least expect it. But, of course, I should expect them because, sad as it may seem, the adult human appears to be hell-bent on destroying our best efforts in the course of our everyday lives.

Seventy years research in the field of psychology tells us that the normal mind is nothing short of a recipe for disaster. And you need look no further than your workplace, your tennis or golf club or your local paper for all the evidence that proves that research correct – to say nothing of what you’ll find going on in the wider world! Normal crazy people are constantly misbehaving themselves and they seem unable to stop it. And, on the face of it, we are unable to stop it – because our minds are hard-wired to pay little or no attention to reality and a vast amount of attention to stuff that simply is not going on at all. And if we were to go searching for the root cause of this problem, our useless thoughts would be a prime suspect.

We are bombarded by 50,000 random thoughts each day – and that’s while we’re awake, so we’re not even talking about a twenty four hour period. Some of these thoughts are just silly – like ‘I wish I was out playing golf or lounging at the beach than stuck in here in this boring meeting’ – thinking that you’d like to be somewhere else doesn’t alter the reality of where you are! However, many of these random thoughts are more destructive. I’m sure you have your own list but here are a few examples of what I’m talking about. ‘I’m so shy I’ll never be able to talk to her/him.’ (Delete as appropriate!!) ‘I wish I could be more assertive and not let people walk all over me.’ ‘I’m never going to get that job.’ ‘I’ll be happier when I’m three stone lighter.’

The problem with these thoughts is that, first of all, they confirm that, if your life is not-too-bad, that’s good enough. It isn’t. The second problem is that these thoughts enable (and that’s clearly the wrong word) your subconscious mind pay attention to all the things that it learned about you when you were a small child. These are the things – and the mind has a habit of tending towards the negative – that you now believe about yourself. They are the things that are standing in your way.

Your mind won’t stop thinking useless thoughts – as I’ve said, it’s how we’re built. But you can choose whether or not you will pay these thoughts any attention. After all, you have a very real alternative to listening to all that nonsense – you could choose to pay attention to the reality of the here and now. And, if that reality includes sitting through a boring meeting, you might just discover that paying more attention to what’s going on might make you more effective, happier and more productive – the things that most people want out of life.

Author's Bio: 

Willie Horton has been enabling his clients live their dream since he launched is now acclaimed two-day Personal Development Seminars all the way back in 1996. His clients include top leaders in major corporations such as Pfizer, Deloitte, Nestle, Merrill Lynch, KPMG, G4S and Allergan together with everyone from the stay-at-home parent to sports-people. An Irish ex-banker and published author he now lives in the French Alps from where he travels the world as a much sought after motivational speaker and mentor. All his work, his weekly Free Personal Development Ezine videos and articles, together with his highly-acclaimed Personal Development Workshops are online at Gurdy.Net