Today I told some of my students about their personal toolboxes. It was an idea I was tossing around (for clients) and thought I’d “experiment” a bit with some high school teens. After the initial “what the heck are YOU talking about NOW?” they started to listen and pay some attention when it came to topics such as :fights with friends, boy/girl friends, parent relationships, getting good grades, etc. All ears were pretty perked up when some of their “favorites” were mentioned.
The “tool kit” I mentioned, is something you already possess. It’s not something you need to go and buy or collect, it’s there. It’s been there since you arrived here. The tool kit is a collection of tools, resources, within your own self that can help fix any problem. A lot of kids, and even adults, don’t believe that such a thing exists. But once you open your mind to understand that this “kit” is within you and DOES exist, it’s easy to start working with the tools. It’s as if you could skip the woodshop and tech class and get right to work with all of the tools you actually possess. Once you’re open to the idea and have made your discovery, the tool kit almost looks like a treasure chest! It glimmers. You go deeper, find more tools, and even more. You’re able to gather together the things you need to “repair” you. You can’t share these tools, their solely yours. You can encourage others to find theirs, however.
Some teens are willing to step back and open up as to what the tool box is and how it can help them. While others need some time to let it sink in. But what does it all come down to? What is there to “fix?”
Any time an emotional dilemma arises, stress, fear, anxiety, guilt, shame – dig into the tool kit! Feel where it hurts or where there is pain. Locate it, and work on it. Meditate, breathe through it. Question the thoughts that are bothering you. Are they JUST thoughts and you’re believing them? Where do they come from? Why are they there? Did you allow them to arrive AND believe them?
Many times we are so conditioned to feel and think a certain way that thinking and believing our thinking is just what we do. But, take a step back, question that thought and fix it – you have the tools to do it. Do you HAVE to believe all the thoughts that arrive? No, you don’t. You can question them and find some of them to be quite funny, and not at all stressful.
Make some time to find YOUR tool box and discover the amazing tools you possess.
(Much of this work comes from “The Work” of Byron Katie – an amazing coach, teacher and author. For more info go to thework.com)