This week I want to talk about the power of being positive and how easy it is to (sometimes unknowingly) be caught up in the negative. I know what you're thinking: "Well, duh." but I want to talk about it on a personal level. I have a few tips and tricks that will help change that mindset over time.
Typically when thinking about a lifestyle change, you start by pinpointing what you want to change. Maybe you want to get rid of your tummy rolls, your back fat, your double chin, etc. Or maybe you want to add weight because your thighs don't touch, or you don't feel you're curvy enough. It's not always weight-related, either. Perhaps you're not loving the way your skin looks, or how your hair feels.
Chances are you're holding yourself to some ideal, some standard, that you currently don't feel you meet.
This is when the negativity starts. We become tunnel-visioned on what we don't like about ourselves, and we risk never finding true contentment with who we are.
If you're like me, while reading the above paragraph, you probably nodded along while envisioning the parts of yourself you don't like.
Instead of thinking about what you don't like about yourself, I want you to think about something you DO like about yourself. You don't have to discredit yourself in order to change. You can still love yourself, your body, and who you are while wanting to be healthier/ improve your lifestyle.
Improving doesn't mean you start with something bad, it just means you're creating something even better. Think of your journey as becoming an advanced version of yourself.
This is something I struggle with personally. I've been trying to make a daily, conscious effort to changing my thinking because at the end of the day: you really only have one life. What if you were to stay exactly as you are right now? You can't spend every day picking yourself apart and constantly wishing for more. You must find a balance between who you are, and where you see your ideal self.
Now that we've figured out what we like about ourselves, and what we want to improve on to become our advanced versions...
I often hear people talk about what they're eating and the first thing they do is list the things they can't have, or shouldn't have.
Take this statement for example:
"I can't have bread, sugar, chocolate, or chips. I'm doing pretty well though!"
With this statement you're starting off with a barrier. You CAN'T. In your mind, though, you know you can. You can eat whatever you want to eat, but you're choosing not to because you're actively working on a healthier version of yourself.
Try this instead:
"I'm doing pretty well! I'm choosing not to have bread, sugar, chocolate or chips."
By altering the way you think about your lifestyle you're removing obstacles for yourself and, without even trying, you're changing your mindset. You won't feel like you're constantly saying no to yourself. Accepting that what you're doing is a choice, and it's a choice you've made because you want to feel better, will help reduce your fall-off-the-wagon risk... thus rendering you more successful.
It also helps others see how important it is to you. If you tell someone you can't have cake, there's a good chance they'll give you a warm, understanding smile with an encouraging, "Ah, you can have a cheat. Have the cake!" And we all know that we can only be so strong when resisting temptations.
When you say to them, instead, that you choose not to have the cake, they hear that in a different way. It's not a challenge for them to overcome by reassuring you that they won't judge you for having it. It's a statement of choice. They're more likely to accept that as your final answer and not encourage otherwise.
1. Hold yourself accountable. If you say something that starts with I can't, I don't want, I won't... rephrase. Auto-correct yourself and watch how it quickly your brain stops needing correcting and just starts thinking more positive. Think positive, feel positive, expel positivity. Be mindful of those around you, are they feeding your positivity or your negativity?
2. Watch/listen to motivational speakers. I won't rhyme off any specific ones because I think it's super important to find ones that speak to your soul, no pun intended. But there's a reason people devote their lives to speaking for a living. They're really, really, good at it. I've found inspiration many times from motivational speakers.
3. Sleep. This seems a little off-key, huh? But it's SO, so, so important to let your body rest and recover from your day-to-day activities. Your emotional, spiritual and physical well-being relies on you getting the proper amount of sleep.
I was chatting with my very good friend, Ashley, recently when the topic of sleep and cravings came up. She pointed out such a great point when she said, "I was having cravings all the time when I was tired. I was miserable and cranky all the time." How true is that? When we're tired we're inevitably more irritable. When we're not in a good mood we're more likely to crave the bad things that we used to turn to in order to feel better.
Let's end the cycle and make a daily effort to be more positive and kinder to ourselves and our bodies.
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Thanks for reading.!
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