Optimize Your Life

Episode #2: Hack Your Thinking to Get in Ultimate Control of Your Results

Show Notes:

Do you feel out of control? Do you wish you could achieve your goal, but have a hard time wrapping your mind around it? Then you’re in the right place. Today, I’m going to share with you three ways to hack your thinking and get in ultimate control of the results you want to create.

Now the thing is that typically when you find yourself feeling really stuck, where you can’t particularly achieve that goal, where you can’t get off the ground, it’s usually one thing that gets in your way: Your mind.

And I know that that’s going to be a little bit harsh for some people. That’s going to feel like it’s not fair because there are external circumstances, things that happen out there in the world. But what I want to teach you is that no matter what happens out there, you have the ultimate power about how you think about circumstances.

And so when you are trying to attain a goal, you have to stay focused. We talked about that last time. But today what I really want to talk to you about is what happens if your mind gets in the way. Typically what we see is that we have negative thoughts. We worry about all the things that could go wrong. We think about how we haven’t been successful in the past and so we worry about failure again in the future. We believe that we’re not strong enough or smart enough to accomplish the goal. And so we get in our own way with our thinking. And the truth is that all of that is just a story.

So there are 3 things that I want to share with you. This is really going to help shift the way that you think about things and optimize your thinking when it comes to your goals, and really any sort of result that you want to create out there in the world.

Now you’ve probably heard the word “mantra,” and essentially what it is is an affirmation. It’s a statement that you say to yourself that helps your brain start to create new neural pathways. It helps you to believe something that isn’t already true in your mind. It might be true, but you kind of haven’t caught up to it yet. You’re still not in that belief mode about it. And it could be, and I’ve seen this a lot with people who have imposter syndrome, that everybody else understands this about you and you’re the last person standing to not yet have caught on, right? We often underestimate ourselves where everybody else can see how much we shine.

And so this is one of those tools that’s going to help you get caught up. And the way that we utilize this is by using a statement about yourself. You start with the words, “I am.” So for example, if you were somebody who had a goal to create an additional $20,000 in your business, let’s just say. You would say, “I am creating additional $20,000 each year (or each month)” whatever your goal is. You would basically declare that that’s what you’re doing, right? “I am exercising three times a week,” if that’s your goal. You have an exercise goal as part of your wellness plan, right? Whatever it is that you set out to do in this new year, you’re going to declare that to yourself and it’s going to help your brain catch up from that place of where you were in the past and where you think you are and what you’re capable of and what you really want to create that’s perhaps new and challenging and perhaps even frightening. So you want to say that to yourself over and over again.

Now sometimes, people have a hard time because they’ve spent their whole life believing one thing. And I’m here to tell you, I’ve actually worked 1:1 with some clients on this, and one of the most common misconceptions that pretty much all of us walk around with, it’s kind of interesting, is this notion that “I am not enough.” Right? We all have this sense of inadequacy. And so we’re all thinking that everybody else is so much better and smarter and greater and more capable than we are when in fact, everybody is walking around with that same idea about everybody else. Isn’t that so fascinating?

What if you were to take this on and really practice this mantra? Say to yourself, “I am capable of losing that weight! I am capable of achieving that next promotion. I am capable of marrying the man of my dreams.” So you can use it in terms of your capability, but I think what would be even more powerful is to actually state that you are doing the thing. So not that you have the capacity to do it and it’s kind of this thing that’s coming up in the future that you could potentially do, but more so “I am already doing it.” So what is it that you’ve already set your goal to do?

So for example, we talked last time how my goal was to create weekly podcast episodes. And so I can say, “I am creating one episode each week. I am creating the content that I want to share out in the world.”

Another way to use mantras is to use them in the past tense. So the first way that I showed you is really in present tense where you’re stating what it is that you want to create. Another way is to think in hindsights. So remember last time, we talked about looking at 2021 as if you’re at the end of that year and looking back. And so if you have that goal of losing 15 pounds, then you could say (the first version we said of mantras is to say), “I am losing a pound a week” let’s say. You’re in the process of doing that and you’re doing it. The other version that I’m now sharing with you is to say, “I have lost those 15 pounds.” Right? It’s already happened and you have acknowledged that it’s happening. And the more you tell that to yourself, like “Oh, I’m so grateful that I’ve lost those 15 pounds and I feel so much lighter. Life feels so much easier now and I can totally fit into those jeans” — you know, if you tell yourself the thing that you want to create, your mind starts to believe it.

It only works if you do this and it feels true, if you can really get behind it, and you practice saying it a lot. The think about the brain is it doesn’t like incongruency. If you tell it one thing and you say it over and over again and it hears it, it starts to believe that it’s true. And it’s true inside of your head. What happens then–it’s trying to fill in that gap and to catch up on the external world and make that come to fruition. And you might say, “Oh, well that sounds like, you know, a little bit woowoo.” But listen, we do this in reverse all the time, right? And that’s essentially going to be my next point.

So if the first tool for you guys to use is mantras, the next one is I want you to think about your story. One of the things that’s going to help you to hack your thinking and get ultimate control of your results is to pay attention to the story that you tell yourself.

You are not your story but so often we believe the stories that we’ve told ourselves our whole lives and that’s when we see people getting to their victim mentality and starting to believe that they’re not capable of doing things, that they are not attractive, they’re not smart. you know–in some way, shape, or form are inadequate. And I’m here to tell you that everything that you believe to be true is just a story and if you decide that you want to create different kinds of results in your life, you have to then create the story that aligns with those results.

So ask yourself: “who do I know that has the results that I want?” And “what must they believe? How must they be thinking in order to create those results?” Because ultimately what it comes down to is the way that you think. So give your mind the ammunition, give it that tool by sitting down and thinking about how to reverse-engineer this process.

If I want to be the kind of person who runs a marathon, then I’m going to have to really be disciplined, really be organized, and get out there every single day or every other day and run and increase my running incrementally over time. I have to have some sort of a plan where I start out and I’m totally out of shape. I go out and I run my first mile. And maybe the next day I’m a little bit sore, so I take that day off and I come back the next day because that’s the plan–is every other day where I give my body a chance to rest and recover. So now I’m out there and it’s day two of my running, and perhaps I do a mile and a little bit more. And every time I go out there, I push the envelope. But I’m not doing this randomly. I actually have a plan. I have a blueprint where I know this is the date that I need to run the marathon and by that time I need to run X number of miles and so I have six months, let’s say, to get in shape, to get to the point where I can run that many miles. How many miles do I need to run each day sequentially so that eventually my body gets into good enough shape?

And this is just a metaphor. You can use that analogy really for anything: for creating money in your business, for losing the weight, for changing your relationship with your kids, for organizing your house, whatever it is. It really all works in the same way. You have to have a goal. You have to align your thinking with that goal, and in order to do that you have to get rid of your old stories, the ones that make you believe that what you want is not possible for you, the ones that bring up all that self-doubt, that make you second-guess yourself.

I recently spoke to a prospect and she was really interested in working with me but she said she’s a kind of person who has a hard time making decisions and so she kept going back and forth and back and forth and she was really having a hard time just making a decision, just committing to one thing or another. Now, I didn’t care if she wanted to say yes or no. I thought she was a good fit, but it was really about helping her make that decision and she really had a hard time getting off the fence. And I asked her, “Is this something that you struggle with in your life?” and she said, “yes.”

So if you’re that kind of person, maybe you identify like she did as, “I am the kind of person who has a hard time making decisions” and every time you have to go out and make a decision about anything, it takes you a really long time to decide. But that doesn’t have to be your story anymore. Even though that’s been your story, you can change it. You can say to yourself, “From now on, I’m the kind of person who listens to my gut and makes a decision. I’m not going to waste my time anymore. I’m not going to pretend that I don’t know the truth. I’m going to listen to what feels right in my gut.” And if that’s going to be the kind of person that you want to be, you just tell yourself that story that that’s who you are and then you start to follow that protocol and you make it come true. Alright. So that’s my second tip for you is really to break free from your story. You are not that story. You can create the kind of story that is going to serve you…

…which brings us to the third tip and that is if you have self-judgement that is really going to get in the way of producing the kinds of things that you want out in the world. This is the kind of thing that I see a lot with perfectionists. They are very very critical of their work. They’re also critical of other people’s work often when they have these high expectations. They want things to be a certain way. They have a lot of ideas about how things should be in the world, but they’re not quite perfect and they’re always feeling like they have to keep making another iteration.

Now, I appreciate that sentiment. I understand that people care very much about quality and representing themselves in a certain light and all that is great. However, if it is getting in the way because you are being critical of yourself, and it doesn’t have to be that you’re a perfectionist. I hear a lot of my clients talk about having that nagging, negative, critical voice in their head that is constantly at them. And it really affects their self-confidence. It affects their self-esteem. They start to doubt themselves and you have to be able to notice that and really break away from that.

One of the ways that you can do that is by implementing more self-compassion. What does that actually mean? There’s been a lot of research done by researcher Kristin Neff. She is a specialist when it comes to self-compassion so if you haven’t seen her TED Talk and if you haven’t taken her self-assessment on compassion, then I really encourage you to go over there and check it out. She does a beautiful job of breaking down self-compassion into these three steps where you are getting really clear on how your self-talk contributes to this feeling that you have of yourself and how you can turn that around by implementing kind statements.

She also looks at it from the perspective of how you are socially. So are you somebody who isolates and feels ashamed of yourself, feel like you have to hide, or are you somebody who seeks out help from others? And lastly, she looks at it from the perspective of emotions. Are you really mindful of those emotions or are you over identifying with your feelings whereby they’re kind of swallowing you up whole? Some of this is a little bit of a more advanced concept, but I wanted to share it with you because I love that she’s got this free resource where you can go and assess where you fall.

if you are somebody who’s going to get self-critical about the fact that you don’t have a perfect score, then hear this right now. It’s not about that. It’s about identifying your baseline score and being able from that place to say, “Okay, now I know what I need to work on.” If your self-kindness score is low then that’s what you need to focus on. You need to be able to break away from that criticism, that critical voice that’s constantly telling you that everything that you’re doing is wrong, and that you’re not good enough, and that everybody’s better than you, to being kind to being really compassionate with yourself. Right? If you are the kind of person who tends to feel ashamed all the time of yourself and doesn’t want anybody to find out about a mistake that you’ve made or some blunder that you’ve created in the world, well get over yourself because–hey we’re all human, and this is what it’s about. Self compassion is about giving yourself the chance to understand that you are just like everybody else and everybody’s been there at some point. She calls this Common Humanity for a reason. She’s saying that we are all the same. We all make mistakes. We all have times when we aren’t perfect. In fact, perfection is really something that is impossible. So don’t be so hard on yourself and instead, be able to reach out to other people for support because that is what’s going to help you get through those hard times.

And if you’re the kind of person who over-identifies with your feelings, you’re not really mindful. And you know this because maybe you’re really reactive. When your husband says something, you lash out, or when your kids break something, you lose your mind. Then you need to work on some self-management.

Alright. Now, I want to share with you that I spent two-and-a-half years putting together a huge number of resources just like these where you can coach yourself through this process. I put it together in a book that comes along with a workbook and I call it the 7E Solution to Burnout. Now, it’s true that you may not be experiencing burnout yourself. However, it really goes through the process of things that we all can relate to like stress. And really if you think about it, burnout is just about that–stress that’s chronic and is building up over time. So if you’re somebody who has stress, which is probably everybody, and you want to learn all the tools to really coach yourself through this so that you’re not so affected, so that you can really hack your thinking and create the results that you want, you got to get a copy of this book.

So go to 7ESolution.com. Again, it’s 7, the letter E as in elephant, solution.com and all of the information about the book is there. It’s available on Amazon and other places where books are sold online. And I really hope that it gives you that step-by-step process that you might be looking for in order to really make this year the best one ever. So get started on that. Use your mantras. Really think about your story and how it can serve you and get on board with self-compassion and I’ll see you next time. Take care.

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