I used to beat myself up if my asana practice wasn’t what I planned.
I should have taken a few more classes last week …
I have to get to more hot classes (even though I’m exploring some other disciplines)
Fortunately, I’m understanding a bit more that negative self-talk isn’t helpful. Some leaders out there are insistent that breaking down by beating down is the way to go, but I’m not so sure.
Make no mistake- I’m not saying let’s hold hands and sing campfire songs- challenges help us grow. But calling yourself an idiot while it’s happening may not help you get the best possible outcome.
Persistent repetitive thoughts can be useful when you are trying to lose weight, quit smoking or change your diet. But what happens when the thoughts hold you back from the things you want to do? When self-doubt creeps in it seems that negative thought is like a song programmed repeat in our heads.
We all have the ability to put an end to that pattern. Here are 3 ways to halt those thoughts and get back on track to success.
1. Acknowledge the thought
Noticing that you are having a negative thought is a necessary first step. After recognizing that you have started to play that self-destructive song take a moment to figure out why you started to play it in the first place. Did you face a stressful situation? Were you faced with making a decision and unhappy with what you chose? Have you slipped in your workout routine or made a few unhealthy food choices? Beating yourself up isn’t the answer.
2. Confront the thought
When a particularly powerful or insistent negative thought strikes you, examine it. If it’s an objectively true thought, agree with yourself and then restate your commitment. Maybe you just heard yourself say, “I can’t workout for an hour by myself.” Squash that thought by getting in its face. Reply instantly “Don’t ever say that you can’t do anything”. This kind of confrontation gives you power and control over damaging thought patterns.
3. Change the thought
As you notice yourself saying something negative in your mind, you can stop your thought mid-stream my saying to yourself “Stop”. Saying this aloud will be more powerful, and having to say it aloud will make you more aware of how many times you are stopping negative thoughts, and where. Replace a limiting thought like ‘I only ran for 30 minutes’ to ’30 minutes is the most I’ve run yet!’. Good feelings create more good feelings and before you know it those patterns are broken.
Thoughts are things so choose to make the them good ones!