Confidence Tricks 7. Sir Walter Scott on Adversity – quote

Sir Walter Scott on Adversity – quote

“It’s a matter of ABC: When we encounter ADVERSITY, we react by thinking about it. Our thoughts rapidly congeal into BELIEFS. These beliefs may become so habitual we don’t even realize we have them unless we stop to focus on them. And they don’t just sit there idly; they have CONSEQUENCES. The beliefs are the direct cause of what we feel and what we do next. They can spell the difference between dejection and giving up, on the one hand, and well-being and constructive action on the other. The first step is to see the connection between adversity, belief, and consequence. The second step is to see how the ABCs operate every day in your own life.”  Sir Walter Scott

“Belief is a matter of customary muscle tension” F. M. Alexander

 The second quote is by F M Alexander, the originator, of the Alexander Technique. It was considered to be quite a provocative statement in the 1930s. Some people have suggested that he said it in order to shock. Walter Carrington, however, believed that he was perfectly serious about it because he, F M Alexander, equated belief with fixation. In Alexander’s experience a rigidity of mind corresponded to a rigidity of body. (Walter Carrington on the Alexander Technique in discussion with Sean Carey, 1986, p.45f)

Voice, confidence & presentation coaching with Alan Mars
Voice, confidence & presentation coaching with Alan Mars


I love the above quote by Sir Walter Scott – it’s so modern! As a little experiment try putting the key words into Google and see what you come up with. You might find quite a few modern versions of “ABC” out there but, to my mind, none of them quite as succinct and pithy as Sir Walter Scott’s.
Try buying into the two quotes. Decide to treat them “as if” they were true. Believe that by changing your muscular reaction to adversity you will also change, for the better, the consequences that arise from adversity.
How can you change your muscular reactions? How can you weaken the hold of a limiting belief? I’m sure there are many possibilities… including, perhaps, dipping into the preceding pages of this blog.


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