What’s your view on the idea “As you think, so you shall be”

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    Hi all, I’m a newbie and I’m loving looking around this great site.

    I’ve been reading the brilliant book, “Stop Thinking, Start Living “by the impressive Richard Carlson. In the first chapter he says “As you think so you shall be” but then later on in the same book he says “You are not your thoughts” which has caused me great confusion as to what exactly he means? Is this not a contradictory statement?

    For me, I would of always had the view that you are your thoughts as they influence your emotions which power everything else. Good thoughts, good mood (emotions) good actions. But as someone who has a tendency to over think (much like the basis of this post) and be negative I found the idea that I’m not my thoughts liberating and that I could just let them go if not serving me.

    But these two, what I think are contradictory statements, are causing me some internal discomfort. What do you guys think??


    Hi Danny ,

    I will keep this as simple as I can.

    If you were your thoughts and emotions , you would not be able to stand back and notice them objectively. The space behind your thoughts and emotions is the place you need to focus your attention , all the answers will come from this place.

    Many blessings upon your journey X



    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by BDC.

    Dear Danny:

    I don’t know what the author of the book meant by those two sentences: (1) “As you think so you shall be”, and (2) “You are not your thoughts”, but to me, these two sentences are not contradictory if combined this way: you don’t have to believe every thought that crosses your mind. You can evaluate your thoughts, accept some and reject others. You are the thoughts that you accept. You are not the thoughts that you reject.



    Dear Danny,

    welcome! You’ve already received great responses by BDC and Anita. In response to “You’re not your thoughts”, I’d like to say: you’re also your breath, for example. If you focus on your breathing, and feel your belly rise and fall with your breath, you’re shifting your focus from your thoughts (it’s called the monkey mind that keeps you stuck in worry, fear, is obsessing, cannot let go, cannot relax…) to something beyond those thoughts, as BDC said. By focusing on your breath, you’re focusing on the here and now, and can perhaps hear another voice – the still small voice of your intuition. Your inner voice.

    At the same time, “as you think so shall you be” is also true, because as Anita said, if you believe your thoughts (e.g. that you’re not good enough and a loser), your life will reflect those false beliefs. If you believe you’re good enough and capable and you believe in yourself, it’s much more likely that your life will be fulfilling and satisfying. That’s why the second postulate is also true.


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