Gandhi once said:
“Carefully watch your thoughts, for they become your words. Manage and watch your words, for they will become your actions. Consider and judge your actions, for they have become your habits. Acknowledge and watch your habits, for they shall become your values. Understand and embrace your values, for they become your destiny.”
I love this so much. The way we talk to ourselves shapes our actions, relationships, our life. Put simply, the way we think has a direct impact on our life.
I’m sure you’ve heard people saying that thoughts become your actions, but have you actually taken time to consider the way you talk to yourself? I’m surprised they don’t teach this in school, if we could get a handle on this from a young age it would have such a huge impact on our life, and if more and more of us do this, just think what effect it would have on the world.
You’ve heard of self-fulfilling prophecies, those times where you knew something bad was going to happen, you knew you were going to fail your test or a relationship wasn’t going to work out. There’s a famous Henry Ford quote which always sticks in my mind, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right,”
This is so completely true. If you tell yourself you can’t do something you 100% will make sure that you can’t. It’s not conscious, it’s your subconscious believing what you tell yourself. You’re telling yourself you can’t do something so you won’t take action, you’ll get distracted, you’ll find barriers. Thoughts influence how you feel about something. Your thoughts influence the action you take. Those actions directly influence your life. Those results reinforce those original thoughts which then become your beliefs, so nothing changes.
Ever feel like you’re stuck in a rut and you just can’t see a way out, or bad things just keep happening? For example, when you plan to save money but keep telling yourself you are bad with money, and whilst you’re telling yourself this you get a parking ticket and a penalty letter for not paying a bill on time. This is those self-limiting beliefs in action, which stem from our thoughts and self-talk.
You can then see that everything begins and ends with our thoughts and beliefs. So if we want to change our life we need to change our thoughts. If you feel you can’t do something you will absolutely make sure that it doesn’t happen.
It’s the law of attraction. Again, you might think that the law of attraction is just too woo for you, but hear me out. When you think of the law of attraction you might be imagining something sitting cross legged on a cushion, imagining themselves in their dream home, in their dream car, with their dream lover, and these things they wish for magically appear. Poof! Law of attraction. We’re missing one vital step here, it’s that you have to take action based on what you desire. Without action it’s just another dream, that car isn’t just going to land on your driveway one day.
You need to get clear on what you want, which is why goals are incredibly important. If you follow me on instagram you’ll have seen that I was all against goal setting at the end of the year. This was less about goal setting itself (an activity I absolutely love to do and firmly advocate), it was more the pressure to cement your goals before midnight on 31st December. At a time that’s already pretty overwhelming why put pressure on ourselves to crank it right up? I seriously felt like I was going to explode. So I parked my goal setting and used the first week in January instead to create my 90 day plan, and breath….
Once you get clear on your goals tell people, write them down, create a vision board. Spend time with your goals every single day. When you were a child I’m sure you blew out your birthday candles and someone said “make a wish” and then something along the lines of “don’t tell us what you wished for or it won’t come true” what a load of crap!! Now I have children of my own and I understand the law of attraction I am a big yes for telling us your wishes, talk about them, share your visions, you’re then much more likely to take action to get you there, and we can help to keep you accountable too.
Our subconscious is an amazing thing, and something I’m just touching the surface of in terms of my own research. Your subconscious works within any parameters you give it, your value system, your beliefs, your thoughts. Once you get clear on what you do want, and you remind yourself of these every single day you’ll start to see amazing things happen. In practical terms, have you ever dreamed of owning a specific car and you see it all the time?
If you tell yourself you’re useless at something then that’s what you’re going to get, if you tell yourself you absolutely can do something, then that will come true. It’s completely in your hands.
This is where visualisations and meditations come in. You literally become a different person, if you want to. You can take things out of the subconscious into the conscious. Through these practises. It all starts with getting really clear on knowing what you want and telling your brain what you want..
There’s no right or wrong way to do this, it’s all about taking persistent and consistent action. Don’t let procrastination step in, you don’t need fancy technology, new stationary, the best looking notebook. Literally write your goals on a beer mat, on a scrap piece of paper, in the steam in the shower, tell friends and family. Once you do this daily you will just know your goals inside and out that you can write them anywhere. It becomes less about where you write it and more about the act, the physical act of writing your goals down or telling someone. You’re telling your brain what you want.
So what’s the story you tell yourself, “I’m so unfit” “I’m a massive procrastinator” “I’m always so busy” “I have no time for myself” “I have no will power”, “I’m not enough” It’s a painful exercise in some ways, but you could write these self-limiting beliefs down on a piece of paper. What do you always tell yourself or tell others? Now write down the evidence that proves you wrong. For instance if it’s that you’re so unfit, remind yourself of the park runs you did before injury, you are fit, you have been fit in the past and you will be back to that fitness again if you take action to overcome injury for example, or whatever your limiting belief is at the moment. Look for any evidence that you can to prove yourself wrong.
I’m going to share a practical exercise with you now to show you this in action, to give you the evidence that you totally can. Before I share this, I just want to caveat that when you set your goals they need to be realistic (the R in SMART goals), this might sound really counterintuitive to what I’m about to share with you. But hey I’m also a realist. My chances of becoming a world famous jockey are zero. Why was horse racing the first thing that popped into my head? I’m actually terrified of horses! Anyway, you get the jist set big hairy audacious goals (also known as BHAGs) but bear in mind realistic, afterall you want to achieve this.
This will prove to you that this is something you can do. Close your eyes, take a deep breath in and a slow breath out, think of the first symbol that comes into your head. Don’t overthink it, just go with it. When you wake up in the morning think about how your goals, and how want to feel that day. You will start to see your symbol everywhere, in shop windows, in car stickers, on the TV. Take this as a sign that you can do it.
My sign is a pineapple. I chose this a couple of years ago and I see them everywhere. Random places. I’ll share a few with you. I was in a coffee shop during 2020, working on the budget for my not for profit thinking about how I needed to turn the business around. I had kept asking for a sign that this was going to work out. I looked up and saw a gold pineapple on the shelf in front of me! I now know that it’s there, so when I visit that coffee shop (for any local listeners it was in Dikes in Stalbridge), I know the pineapple is there, it’s not a random sign now. Likewise I wouldn’t go into a supermarket just so I can see my sign, it’s better if it takes you by surprise. So two more times I’ve seen pineapples (there have been many many times but I’ll just share two more). Another was on the aerial of a car, and also in the fountain of my favourite spa. I’ve been going there for years, and I’m presuming this pineapple has always been part of the fountain, but it wasn’t until I chose it as my sign that I noticed it.
It’s not magic. Whether you believe its a sign from the universe or if that’s just too woo for you. At the most basic level it’s our brain taking notice because it knows what we want. When you start focusing on what you do want, that you can do it, then you start to catch yourself in those negative moments and you will take action to pull yourself back to where you need to be. Look for that sign that you can.
I love to know what other people’s signs are, let me know, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or find me on instagram @iamrosiemead I’m super excited to be launching my 5 day free challenge chaos to clarity, starting on 25th January. I’m going to get you out of overwhelm and into action to enhance performance in 2022. It all starts with clarity. You can sign up at rosiemead.com/challenge or DM me for more information.
See you in there!