We all have a past of beating ourselves up in some fashion. And it all starts in our head. These sentences repeat themselves over and over and we run our lives based on them, which is not helpful at all.
When it comes time to do something new, hard, or scary, it is our garbage thoughts that stop us dead in our tracks.
Sentences can alter your mind. The secret is you absolutely must pay attention to them. You have to choose them wisely. You can’t keep choosing the garbage sentences that are in your head to run the show.
This does not mean that the negative sentences stop. It means you don’t make choices based on them. Your whole life you will have a lot of negative thinking that comes up. It’s simply how all our brains are wired.
Once you understand how to listen to how you think, it is your duty and responsibility to yourself, to choose wisely, which thoughts you live your life by and which ones you let float by and ignore.
Instead of telling myself, I have no idea what to do or where to start building a business, I had to tell myself,
I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I’m going to figure this out. OR
I don’t need to know exactly what to do to build this business but I know I’m committed to figuring it out.
That helped me to ask better questions every day like:
What can I do today that’s a little bit better than yesterday?
It is possible to create that train of thought – that conversation in your head that will move you forward.
Here’s 3 sentences or phrases I’ve used over the years to create that conversation with myself that keeps me moving forward.
Old Carlene vs. new Carlene
I needed a trick to highlight where I typically derailed myself. So this meant that I started listening to how I talked to myself.
Very often I would hear myself say stuff and I would think, oh that is old Carlene thinking. New Carlene thinks this.
A lot of times my negative voice comes in just because I’m scared I can’t do something. In the past when I’ve failed at something, I’ve been so hard on myself. I beat myself up emotionally. I get angry at myself that I should have done better. Instead, what if I stopped beating myself up if things don’t workout so I can go do bigger things in life?
Here’s how you can use this:
What is something you think about that is old you sentences and then next to it write what does new you think. Come up with a prepared talk on how new you wants to talk to yourself in those moments.
Don’t judge, nudge.
When you start paying attention to all those thoughts, you’ll start hearing, you can’t do it because you always fail, or you’ve never been able to do it, or why is this time going to be different?
You’ll start hearing all that. And your job is to insert new you thinking.
Step one is to hear it, step two is to pivot.
But we somehow insert a step between step 1 and 2 (step 1.5) that we need to eliminate.
Step 1.5 is when we start judging our thoughts and tell ourselves, I must be crazy for thinking this. I must be broken because I have negative thinking. OMG I’m the only one that thinks this way.
You are not the only one who thinks this way. Everyone does. We have to nudge ourselves forward by reminding ourselves to use new you thinking.
Here are two rules I live by. First, I don’t judge my thinking. Second, I don’t stop going because of my old Carlene thinking.
If you know how you want to show up then you just tell yourself that’s your old you thinking. I know in this moment that the new me that wants to do this thing, I know what she’s thinking and what she’s doing. And I’m going to think and act like new me, not old me.
Here’s how you can use this:
Have a plan for when your low energy thoughts come up.
How will you remember to use the new you thinking from #1?
If you don’t hear it, what do you feel like in those moments? If you can identify how you feel then you’ll know there’s something you’re thinking that’s got you feeling off kilter. What is it so you can learn, so you can choose, acknowledge it and change it.
Every success story starts the same.
Every success story starts with a dream. Nervous, scared, thinking you can’t do it, worried it won’t work, concerned about what everyone is going to think of them. Every success story has the same set of doo doo thoughts that you do. Your doo doo thoughts cannot stop you.
All these success stories? They were wrong about their potential. Wrong about what everyone would think. Wrong about what they thought of themselves. You have to believe that today you can do something. You have to believe and tell yourself, Today I could make some kind of change. That if I kept doing it, it might help me do this thing I want to do.
The biggest thing you need is this: You need to be willing to be wrong. You have be willing to see that the BS you think about yourself is wrong, but think instead that you actually might be able to do it.
Your past failures have nothing to do with today. The only thing that matters today is if you decide to take one step, just one. It doesn’t matter what happened yesterday. Today is your fresh decision. Today is your reset button.
Here’s how you can use this:
- What could I be wrong about in order to achieve my dream?
- Is there anyone out there who wanted the same thing as me, who had all these negative thoughts and is successful now?
- Use new me vs old me thinking.
Changing your sentences is not an overnight thing. It takes a while. It’s not hard to change sentences.
What’s hard is when you sit there and complain about doing it, that it’s exhausting. That’s what makes it hard. But if you sit and think, it’s going to be worth it. If you think I’m willing to argue for my future self, from this moment forward it’s not as exhausting.
Today you have a choice. You can go to bed exhausted, because you’re not reaching your dream, because you’re not challenging yourself, you tell yourself you should be doing better, frustrated that you’re stuck. You can go to bed exhausted with all off that or you can go to bed exhausted every night because you changed how you think for the better thousands of times every day.
Initially, you’ll go to bed mentally exhausted, trying to think better, pivoting your thoughts. But you’ll be tired in a good way, a productive way and a way that takes you where you want to go.