It all begins with trust... self-trust.
One of the patterns of behavior that people struggle with is taking consistent action which builds self-trust.
Instead, there is an avoidance, procrastination, and denial which unfortunately build the habit of mistrust/distrust through neglect of follow-through on what you say you'll do...
When you say you are going to do something, do it.
When you promise yourself you'll start/begin, follow-through, etc.. and don't do it, you are essentially building distrust/mistrust within yourself over time.
It's easy to break promises to yourself saying, "I'll get to it later", or choosing to go out with your friends instead of following through on a commitment to yourself.
While at first this may not seem problematic, over time, it creates resentment that builds within yourself...
Have you ever heard this phrase enter your mind or exit your mouth?: "Why can't I get myself to do it?" or "I just can't seem to follow through!"
It's typically because you let your self out of the commitment which then breaks your self-trust over and over again.
To be quite honest, the commitment with yourself is the hardest one to build because you'll let yourself down long before you'll let others down.
You're more likely to quit on yourself than you will quit on others. Yet, you can turn this around.
You might see this as a failure, yet this is an opportunity to learn from yourself and to practice the tools we discussed in our last email about tough love and compassion.
When you let yourself out of something that you know deep down you REALLY need to commit to, you're not using compassion or tough love, you're just falling back into excuses.
You may use psychological defense mechanisms (which protect your ego), so you don't feel so bad about quitting.. Maybe you'll rationalize that you had a long day, or you'll justify the old behavior because you're tired, or you'll procrastinate or lie to yourself saying.. "well, i'll start tomorrow." You know these are all excuses and ways to avoid doing what you know will get you closer to goal and what you NEED to do to stay in alignment with your commitments, and your plan/program.
ALL OF THESE THINGS BUILD MISTRUST/DISTRUST within yourself because in all honestly, if your best friend were to tell you 12x that she's coming over and never shows up, how much trust would you have in her that she's actually coming over?
Yet you do this to yourself repeatedly.
And, I get it. Maybe you do work 12+ hour days, and maybe you do have 3-4 kids, and maybe you are a single parent. I get it LIFE IS HARD!
However, you won't get the results you want if you stay COMMITTED to your old behavioral patterns and set yourself up for failure by continuously LYING to yourself that TOMORROW WILL BE DIFFERENT....
YOU ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT..
Here are my tools to help you build self-trust and finally turn yourself around.. and no we are not doing the hokey-pokey!
STEP 1: STOP MAKING IT HARD (AKA - SIMPLIFY)
If you are working yourself to the bone, have 5 kids, a big family, are a single parent, or have a ton of responsibilities - STOP MAKING THIS PROCESS HARD. I promise you, it doesn't have to be. Stop overwhelming yourself by adding more crap onto your plate or wiggling out of overcommitments. The truth is when you wiggle out of stuff, it's usually stuff for YOU not for others. Be aware of this! You need to say no to things that aren't helping you reach your goals. Yes, maybe your kid needs a mountain made out of clay this weekend and you have a business meeting until 8pm, etc.. but you CAN make better choices with your protein, and you CAN get in at least two 10-min walks per day while you're gabbing with your bestie. You can do something to move you in the right direction.
STEP 2: STOP BUYING INTO YOUR EXCUSES
Excuses only work when you buy into them. They keep working for you because you believe them. Imagine if you believed you could drink 64oz of water per day. Imagine if you believed you could eat 90g of protein per day. Imagine what would happen, if you believed that you can achieve everything with the life you have right now without quitting your job, or getting someone else to pick up your kids, and without making crazy compromises to your lifestyle. Stop making excuses that you can't and get creative about HOW YOU CAN reach your bariatric basics. Yes, it's possible.
STEP 3: COMMIT TO SOMETHING SMALL
When you OVERCOMMIT, you are setting yourself up for failure. "Sure, I'll run a 5k next week, and bake cookies for the bake sale, and sure I'll also man the table at the book fair, and yes, let's meet for dinner at that very triggering restaurant on Friday.. I can handle it!"
JUST STOP OVERCOMMITTING and putting yourself in situations that you're NOT ready for!
This is so self-sabotaging. Instead, in order to build self-trust you need a baby step! Just commit to ONE thing per day or even per week, like... I'm going to walk for 15-min on my lunch hour. Or, I'm going to drink 8oz of water per hour. Or, I'm going to make sure put protein first on all my meals. Or, I'm going to say no to Friday night dinner b/c I'm not ready to go to Mexican and say no to chips... HONESTY with yourself builds self-trust. And, you get more from honesty than BSing yourself.
STEP 4: KICK YOURSELF IN THE BUTT
We're back to tough love. If you are finding yourself trying to wiggle out of a mini-commitment, you may need to call yourself out and give yourself some brutal honesty. When you commit to something, you need to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you'll be able to follow through. If not, go back to #1 and #3 and re-read those! You need to put your game face on and push past "I don't wanna". Not too long ago, I told one of my clients "dont' negotiate with terrorists" meaning the little voice in your head that starts to rationalize, justify, and procrastinate why you shouldn't go for the walk, why the girl scout cookies might be okay, and how starting tomorrow is the better choice. That, my friends, is the little terrorist, AKA inner toddler that wants you to stay in the space of comfort and in that space... NOTHING CHANGES..
So, in order to build self-trust, you've got to say... "not today little guy, we are taking action despite your 'I don't wanna'." In response, you'll feel better, more accomplished, and whether it's a walk, saying no to tortilla chips, or drinking your water, you'll start to build your self-trust muscle and work your way toward your goals actually BELIEVING that you'll get there.
WHY? Because you'll be following through.
STEP 5: BE CONSISTENT
You may need to repeat these steps over and over because consistency is key. I got to where I am by kicking myself in the butt constantly, calling out my excuses and getting super real with old habits. They weren't serving me and they aren't serving you. When you ask, "Why do I keep doing this?" The answer is simple. Because it's more comfortable than changing, and because you haven't called yourself out enough to change it. You've got to challenge the old habits. You've got to shut down the little voice that says "you can't". You've got to practice practice practice until you're blue in the face. You've got to keep going, even if you fall. You've got to learn from the missteps instead of seeing them as final failures. This will help you succeed. Also, small steps consistently gets you there faster than trying to do it all overnight. That never works.
Build your self-trust slowly with small steps which over time will create big results.
Don't let the negative voice take you over, step up and let your conscious mind take back control. Build self-trust by taking action on the things you SAY you want to do... and recognize that the old patterns aren't going to build self-trust, they're going to do the opposite.
I hope this serves you this week, and let's take some action towards your goals!
It all begins with trust... self-trust.