“I am so mad at myself for gaining the weight back”.
“I know what I am supposed to do and I just can’t do it”.
“What is wrong with me that I keep struggling with the same things over and over”?
Are you struggling with these thoughts even today?
I know what it is like to be there. Sometimes you wake up and you are determined, today is the day I start over. Today I will fix all of the things, and then I’ll get back to where I want to be. On other days you wake up, look at your reflection, sigh and look away in frustration.
Maybe that’s just me. Maybe I am the only person that has ever struggled with these thoughts. But I highly doubt it.
The obvious problem with this mentality is that these frustrations lead to stress, stress leads to poor decisions, and poor decisions lead to the exact same results that you are struggling to change. I know this. I know you know this. Yet the cycle continues.
What if you changed your self narrative? Would that make a difference? And how would you even start?
Here are three steps to change your personal narrative, and get out of your own way.
- Feel the feels
It is human nature to push away any unwanted negative emotions that may pop up throughout any given day. You have that frustrated thought, push it away, and keep going about your business. The problem with that is, until you acknowledge what’s going on in that brain of yours, it is going to keep popping up day after day after day. And when the same thought keeps occurring, it becomes imprinted in your permanent in your brain.
I read a book many years ago called My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor that said when you have a thought attached with an emotion, and you feel the emotion attached to it instead of pushing it away, that negative emotion won’t last more than 60-90 seconds. Now she might have had a completely different purpose behind that message but my takeaway was, feel the feels. When I start to have a self image destroying thought, instead of pushing it away, I pause and acknowledge that it is there. I don’t stew on it, repeat it over and over, but when that thought pops up, I pause and acknowledge it instead of immediately shoving it out of the way only to have it come back again tomorrow.
2. Forgive yourself and…
You’ve got to forgive yourself. This is much easier said than done, but it is important. Yes, you let this happen, and what? So?
Removing that anger and frustration allows you to replace those feelings with positive ones that make way for change. You have to be gentle with yourself.
You can allow the shame spiral to continue holding you hostage, or you can change your story.
You’ve already had the thought, and felt the feels around it, so instead of throwing your hands up in depressed frustration, add a “…”.
I let myself get here again…and I know I can fix it.
I let myself get here again…but I am making changes to get me where I want to be.
I let myself get here again…and that’s okay.
Once you get used to adding the …, you will begin adding more to the story.
I cannot WAIT until I drop the pounds again.
Dang I am going to look soooo good.
I am so proud of what I am about to accomplish.
3. Pick your one thing.
Okay we have felt the feels, changed our story, so now it is time to take action!
Pick your one thing. What is that one thing that you can change in your lifestyle this week.
I have found that more often than not, if you try to do a complete overhaul all at once, a few days in you cave into the overwhelm and go back to right where you started.
When I work with clients, each week we pick our one thing that we are going to change. Then at the end of the week we discuss the impact. Were there challenges around that change? How were you able to overcome them? And then the next week we build upon the foundation.
One change a week equals 52 changes a year. Just sayin’.
Next time you feel yourself being sucked down that shame spiral, acknowledge the thought, forgive yourself, and take a step in the next direction.
Be gentle with yourself. You’re worth it.
Believer in you,