Lessons from the “Before” Trilogy

The truth is that our brains are conditioned to find fault in whatever situation we are in. In psychology this is referred to as negativity bias.
To cope, we create the construct (with our thoughts) that something else (there) is better than what we have (here).

This works for us psychologically because according to Dr.s Lisle and Goldhamer’s Motivational Triad, our brains are motivated to avoid pain, seek pleasure, and conserve energy.

While thinking requires little energy, action requires effort.

So in order to avoid doing things, simply thinking things satisfies our brain.

Further, future-tripping, aka “prospection” allows relief the current situation to “improve psychological well-being.”

So how do we change?

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If You’re Searching for Answers

Yesterday I was on a panel speaking to Career Center directors at Sonoma State University.

Question to Panel: “What’s the opportunity for change in career services?”

My Answer: “When you ask students what they want to do with their executive MBA, don’t accept ‘I don’t know’ as an answer…

Instead ask, ‘If you did know, what would that look like?'”

Audience Chuckles

Many people like “I don’t know” as an acceptable answer; it’s a great space filler.

I reject it as a response for myself and for my clients.

You know the answer.

When you close your eyes, and ask yourself the questions about what you want most in life you know.

If you don’t know, let me reframe it this way: Assume money and time are not constrains, what is the answer?

Many people are afraid to give words to the desire stirring within them: words make it real.

They worry what others would think if they went after that goal, so they stuff it down.

They drink, they eat, they shop to numb the vibration within them that is begging to be answered.

What if someone asked you if YOU knew what you needed what would you say?

When You Don’t Feel Like Running…

Me: Let’s run

My Brain: Let’s eat ice cream

Me: Let’s write a blog

My Brain: Let’s watch tv

Me: Let’s agree to be on a panel interview at the university

My brain: Let’s hide

So many times, the things we want for ourselves our brain rejects.

It’s ok- expect it, hear it, acknowledge it, but don’t listen.

You set goals for a reason.

Expect objection.

When You Don’t Feel Like Running…

Do it anyway.

How to Get UNSTUCK

Sometimes when I tell my clients their thoughts are creating their results I can practically feel the eyeroll- even through text messages. But, it’s true. I think the best way to explain how this works is to teach you how to get un-stuck.

Step 1: As soon as you wake up in the morning write down exactly what is in your head. Do not filter, do not try to write down nice things, just go full-on primal, brain dump.

Step 2: Notice what thoughts come up that are: negative and circle them so you can see the tape that’s playing in your head.

Step 3: Notice the negative thoughts that come up all the time. What are the thoughts that you carry with you through the day– thoughts you always tell yourself.

Step 4: Ask yourself “Is this useful?” Is filling your brain with negativity all day every day serving you? If it was, I don’t think you’d be reading this article.

Step 5: Stop Focusing on It! I know, sounds easy right? But what if instead of telling yourself “I’ll never get this right” 500 times, you focused on something else: like telling yourself “I’m committed to figuring this out.” You don’t have to go from a negative thought to super positive thoughts. Just stop the negative thought in it’s tracks. As you get accustomed to stopping yourself and thinking a new thought over time you can work on going from “I’m figuring this out” to “I’m becoming a person who completes my goals (or whatever you are endeavoring to do).

So often we get into habits of negative thinking, and think it just happens to us, when in reality, we are the ones creating it. Next time you hear that voice going off that’s telling you “I’ll never get this right” use that as a cue to tell yourself a new thought. Guess what will happen? Your thoughts will change, and you will change, too.

I promise if you make this change you WILL see results.

The Easiest Way to Get to Your Goal

If you Wikipedia “Principle of Least Effort” you will read that it is a theory that “postulates that animals, people, even well-designed machines will naturally choose the path of least resistance or effort.”

Let me tell you why I think this principle is your number one tool when it comes to getting to your goals.

We all think that in order to achieve anything big, we have to do big things that are very different from what we are doing today.

While it may be accurate that change is warranted to get results—I believe small changes, not total life overhauls are what produce results. Let me tell you why.

To develop the habit of working out, all you need to do is walk 5 minutes a day. If you only need to walk 5 minutes, the barrier to entry is pretty low. All that’s required is that you put on some comfortable shoes and get moving. Maybe if you feel good one day, you walk 6 minutes, then 7, then so on.

However, when we watch shows like The Biggest Loser, we are taught that extreme 6 hour-long workouts per day get results. We go on Instagram and see people doing the HCG Diet are getting results, and then get on the bandwagon, thinking that our weight loss is limited because we need more HCG in our life.

That’s bananas!

What we need more of is healthy habits we can maintain long-term, and this is why I teach my clients the Principle of Least Effort. My goal is to help them build healthy habits over a period of 12 weeks to help them get the long-term sustainable results they want, so that way they can actually enjoy the process of getting to their goal.

If you think you have to go all out to make progress on your goals, let me ask you this. What would happen if you just changed one thing, and stuck to that change? Then, when it was a habit, you make another change. This is exactly what I’ve done to get to every goal, and this is the method I use with my clients to get results.

It may seem simple, but it works like magic.

3 Lessons I Learned From Taking Massive Action

Those of you who’ve followed my journey the past month know that I just achieved a
big goal: I hit my goal weight! I did this by showing up every day until I got
the exact result I was looking for. I set my sights on 123.4 from Day 1, and on
Day 30 I weighed in at exactly that number. Since many people reached out to me
along the way in my journey to find out what I was doing, I thought it would be
valuable to share exactly what I did that made this totally effective.

1.       Set a VERY SPECIFIC GOAL.

Creating a specific goal is important because it forces our minds to focus exactly on
what we want, and what we must do to solve the problem. A generic goal like “I
want to lose weight” is a good place to start, but knowing you want to lose exactly
6.4 or 64 pounds is great because then you have to start thinking of a strategy
to get there.

2.       Dismiss Conflicting Thoughts

This may sound quite simple, but think about it… How many times have you set a big goal for yourself only to give up on it two days later? You create a New Year’s resolution to not eat cake, and then a week later, it’s someone’s birthday so you throw in the towel. What happened? You had a thought in conflict with your goal. Maybe it was something like:

“Just this once”

“I don’t want to miss out”

“They’ll think I’m weird if I don’t eat cake” And that thought led to feeling uncomfortable (deprived, insecure). And to avoid that feeling, you ate the cake. Then after eating the cake you felt like you failed, so you quit. Slippery slope. You may have thought it was just a simple action, but it started with a thought.

Through the month of March– every time I had a thought about eating when I wasn’t hungry or eating to overcome an emotional situation, I paused. I knew that it wouldn’t serve me, and I decided to create a new thought.

3.        Follow the plan that supports your intention.

A lot of times we think weight loss is this elusive mystery that we need to figure out. The truth is most people know HOW to lose weight, they simply choose not to take weight loss producing actions because of their thinking. They see an ad for someone dropping 10 pounds in a week on a keto diet, and then suddenly start questioning their own knowledge.

With weight loss in particular, we get into the habit of wanting results quickly, and if the result takes time, we get frustrated and quit– I knew that was something I’d done in the past. Instead, this time, I just wondered- what if I took everything I knew about weight loss, applied it, and was patient– what would happen then? And in 30 days, I had my result.

If you have other questions about my journey or starting your own journey- please comment below or reach out to me—I’d love to connect with you!

Have a great day!