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Video: Separating Out the Facts

Join in as Brooke Castillo from The Life Coach School talks about the importance of distinguishing between facts and thoughts. Most of us think that those thoughts that are programmed in our brain are facts.  If you want to take back control of your life and you want to decide how you feel in every situation, you first need to understand Fact vs. Thought.  All of your thoughts are optional.  Facts are not optional.

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Episode Transcript:

Hi, it's Brooke Castillo from the Life Coach School and in this video I'm going to talk to you about separating out the facts.

Now, one of the most important tools that you will ever use with yourself and with your clients is distinguishing between facts and thoughts. Because most of us think that those thoughts that are programmed in our brain, that are going on without any supervision, we think those are facts.

We think thoughts like, "I'm not good enough, I'm not very good at that, I won't be able to make that much money, I can't lose weight, I can't be successful." We think those thoughts are actually facts. We have so much evidence that we have compiled in our minds for those ideas, that we actually think they're true.

One of the first things that I always teach my clients and my students, is to separate out a circumstance which is a fact, from a thought.

One of the best ways to do this is to ask yourself, or your client, "What is your problem?" Any problem that it is, what is it, and let's write it down. If you give this as homework to a client, or even if you do this yourself, just get one page and think about whatever it is that's bothering you, whatever you think your problem is and write it down. Fill up that whole page with what you think that is.

Once you've done with that, go through that page and pull out only the facts; only things that indisputable, that aren't subjective. You're not going to include any emotions any opinions, any judgments, you're only going to pull out facts.

This exercise will blow your mind, because on that huge page that you have just written of all your feelings, of all your frustrations, of all your opinions there will probably be less than three lines of facts from that entire page, there will probably be just three facts in the whole thing.

When you look just the facts, you could take a whole conversation that you had with a man that was upsetting, and the only facts that you can get from that whole conversation might be man speaks words. In fact, this was an exact example of one of my client's and now one of my teachers. She had this experience with another person, this very frustrating experience, she had thought. What she was able to boil it down, when she separated out the facts, was man speaks words. Everything else was a thought she was having about it. A story.

Now, why does this matter? Because the facts aren't optional. But it doesn't matter, because facts don't hurt us. Facts are neutral. The story we tell about the conversation, the story we tell about what the man said, all of those things are optional.

If you want to really take back control of your life and you want to be the one that's deciding how you feel in every situation, then you need to first understand fact versus thought. All of the thoughts are optional.

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