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Program Yourself for Happiness and Success
by Michele Caron

Do you ever wonder why people that are positive and optimistic always seem to be so lucky in life?

It is not luck, they are just naturally using a basic principle in life:

 You Get What You Focus On, and Our Beliefs Direct this Focus

Our minds are biologically set up to focus on certain things, and thereby make them “part” of our lives.  For example, in a crowded sports stadium full of sights and sounds, we can still concentrate on what the person next to us is saying (although we may miss what the announcer is saying).  If you wanted to eavesdrop, you could also shift your focus to what the people behind you are saying, in which case you probably won’t hear what your friend is saying anymore!   Our whole lives are like that, a serious of copious amount of input, information and distractions…Our focus determines what we will make part of our lives.

Now, sometimes our subconscious helps us control what we are focusing on.  Through our previous thoughts and behavior, we program our subconscious for this, sort of like a computer! One program might be “it is important when my kids are in danger”.  So, at a busy family barbeque, you may be talking and laughing with friends, and not paying too much attention to your kids in the backyard.  However, if the kids start pointing sticks near each others faces (yikes!), your subconscious instantly grabs your attention, and you shift your focus to your children.

The programs we have in our brain are also known as “beliefs.”  These are the rules we go by to make sense of all the sensory input and navigate through our lives.  Now, here is the trick:  Those “positive” people, that seem to be so lucky, simply have “positive” beliefs.  This means that they always focus on the positive side of any situation.  (All situations have a positive side!)  They may do this intentionally, but they also may have a lot of positive beliefs programmed in their brains that help to ensure this. Your beliefs will determine your focus.

Your brain will then pick things out of your environment that match the beliefs you have, and bring those things to your attention, discarding the input that does not match. 

Here are some examples of negative and positive beliefs (programming), and how they might affect your life: 

Negative Belief

Outcome of Negative Belief

Positive Belief


Outcome of Positive Belief


Nobody loves me.

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  If my wife is grumpy, it must mean she doesn’t love me.

I am loved!

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  If my wife is grumpy, it must mean she needs a hug.  Or, maybe she isn’t grumpy at all, she just must be tired.


My mother-in-law is so controlling.

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  That Mother’s Day card she sent is her way of controlling me.  I always notice when she does something annoying.


My mother-in-law is so caring!

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  That Mother’s Day card she sent is her way of loving me.  If she happens to do something annoying now and then, I don’t really notice.


Nothing ever goes right for me.

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  How do you think this would affect your life?


Things usually go well for me!

I notice and focus on every little thing that fits this belief.  How do you think this would affect your life?


Now, here is another trick about this:  Every time we notice something that fits our belief, we believe it even more, and it becomes like fact.  Then our brain will show us even more things that fit this “fact”! 

I know what you are thinking…But do my beliefs really change my life, or just how I view it?  Yes and Yes.  They do both!  When beliefs become facts our subconscious will tend to support actions that make it true.  You may always sleep in on important days for some reason if your belief is “I always mess up”.  You may not even apply for that great job if your belief is “My job stinks.”   If you believe that “people are nice” you may notice the five smiling people in a crowd, and not really even see the frowning people.  Since you think people are nice, you are always smiling, and people tend to smile back.  For you, everyone is nice!  (There is also a spiritual component to this process as well, but you don’t even have to consider that aspect to see that these principles are true.) 

You can purposefully take control of your life by examining the things that you think, even if they seem to be “facts.”  See if you are absolutely sure it has to be that way.  Maybe a more positive belief is possible!  And the positive belief is sure to bring positive results. 

Let’s see how this might work: 

Current, negative belief

Possible, more positive belief

Great, really positive belief


I am poor.

I am gaining more income all the time.

I am rich!


My boss hates me.

My boss wants me to do well.

My boss appreciates and supports me!


I am unattractive.

I am pretty good looking.

I am attractive and beautiful!


What types of things would your brain focus on if you held each one of those beliefs?  How would your mood, energy and performance level be?  Would the things you focus on tend to make you happy or sad? 

So, this is a complex topic, but I hope I have convinced you to at least try examining some of your beliefs, and seeing if you can’t make them just at least a bit more positive (if you can bring yourself to make them really positive, even better!) 

All you need to do is take out pencil and paper, and start writing down everything you believe about a topic.  Look at each statement and think about what types of things your subconscious must prompt you to focus on to meet this belief.  Think to yourself:  Does it necessarily have to be like this?  What better, more positive belief could I have?  Write it down! 

Your new belief may not seem to match “reality” at first, but don’t worry about that.  Give the new programming some time to sink in and counteract the years of programming you already have.  Just gently remind yourself of the new belief whenever the issue comes to the forefront, and then don’t worry about it.  Your new belief will become reality soon enough. 

I hope you try on some new beliefs for size, see how they change your focus, and see what types of results you can create in your life…Program yourself for happiness and success!

A personal note:  Agree that your mental programs are important?  Want a powerful, no effort way to reinforce positive beliefs?  I use the ThinkRightNow! program...Learn more about it here.


© Michele Caron, 2004.  Michele is a consultant, entrepreneur, and Life/Career Coach.  She can help you create your ideal life!  Simply contact her at for a free initial coaching session by phone.  There are also many career and life resources at her web site,  You may redistribute or post this article on the web, as long as this copyright notice and link remain intact.


Copyright © Michele Caron, 2002-2005