[00:00:00] Hi welcome to today's TLC. I want to talk about why you are not getting the results that you want in your life. Why you're really not getting them.
[00:00:11] At the time I'm recording this podcast, it's a brand new year. Often this time of year, we look back at where we've been and we think about where we're going and we get really excited and have a lot of motivation and redetermination that we're going to get that goal. We're going to change that behavior. We're going to accomplish our dreams.
[00:00:31] So why does that motivation fade over time? Why do we stop doing the things that we say that we're going to? I want you to think about it in the lens of " behavioral babysitting." So often we set this goal and then we look at it and say, "Are we doing it right?" I want you to think about one of those parents that's kind of hovering and helicoptering, looking for the ways that the child is doing it right or doing it wrong. And they might praise the right a little bit, but they'll definitely point out the wrong.
[00:01:04] Like a kid who brings home their homework and the parent skims it to point out all the things they got wrong because they want them to succeed. They want them to do the homework and get a good grade.
[00:01:15] But oftentimes when we're behavioral babysitting ourselves, we don't want to do our goal anymore. It takes out the fun of it. We also have this background noise. That's trying to get us to not fail in ways that we've failed in the past. For example, if I have worked on exercising and I find a new goal and I find a new program and I do it for a month and then it fizzles out and I just don't feel motivated anymore... then this year, I find a new one and I'm excited about it and I'm engaged and I tell myself, "Don't be like you were before, don't fizzle out. We're going to go pass that one month this time." But we have that background noise saying, " Don't do it like you used to. You're not the kind of person that actually follows through with exercise," then we have a belief that comes with us while we're going into our goals. So why are we not sticking through with our goals? Some of it has to do with planning. Some of it has to do with the nitty gritty of the timeline, but a lot of it has to do with where our focus is. Are you focusing on each individual behavior and watching for mistakes? Are you thinking about the ways you've failed in the past and not repeating those failures?
[00:02:33] Here's the secret to truly moving forward with your goals? You have to be forward focused. This is coaching, right? We're looking in the future and we're saying, "What do we want to accomplish? What do we want to create?" And that is exciting! Behavioral babysitting is not exciting. Reliving our failures, not exciting. And those moments when you run out of motivation and you don't want to do it anymore, tapping into the feeling your success in the future will give you helps you have that feeling now.
[00:03:12] When we really tap in to visualization and focusing on our future while we're striving towards our goals, it gives us space to not just use our willpower. Willpower is a finite resource and it runs out. You only can make yourself do something that you don't want to do for so long. And it takes willpower when you do something, even when that's not aligned with your feelings.
[00:03:38] Let's take the example of sitting down and doing homework with a child.
[00:03:42] Your child shows up to the table, frustrated and irritated that they have to be doing the homework. Or maybe they sit and play with their pencil over and over again and don't pay attention because they don't really want to be there. You try and not feel frustrated. You push that feeling away and you semi-patiently try and coerce your child to do the homework. Depending on how long the homework takes that resistance will eventually need an outlet because your willpower runs out. It'll come out in the way that you talk to your child. It will come out in you storming off and saying, you do this homework by yourself or whatever it is. The reason this is happening is because you're focusing in the moment on what you don't want to be doing or what you wish was different.
[00:04:31] What if instead, you take a breath. You realize, "I don't really want to be here and that's okay." But then you think about how you will feel at the end when it's done. That relief, that sense of accomplishment, you can borrow that feeling to help you fuel your goal on the way to accomplishing it.
[00:04:56] Now, you can invite the kid to do the same thing too, and get out of the rut of frustration and willpower. But they can stay there if they want, because you are in charge of your experience and you have the power to choose what you feel along the way. It all depends on where your focus is. Are you "babysitting" your behaviors and trying to make sure you do your goal "right," like a child who's doing their homework and you're trying to force it? Or, are you owning your experience thinking about what you're trying to create in the first place and that feeling at the end that will be amazing? That fuels you.
[00:05:39] To make this visualization effective, there are three main components.
[00:05:45] First, you've got to clean up your thinking. Know what it is that is getting in the way. Remember that belief about your past, where you started that exercise routine and then you didn't finish and you judged yourself?
[00:06:00] Let that be in the past, clean that up. That's something you did or I did, or they did, but it doesn't have to be what is now. You get to create whatever you want to create. So the first part is letting go of what was and cleaning up your mind around it. Find where the little lies are like, "It's taking forever for me to accomplish this!" Well, is it really taking forever? What have you already accomplished? Can you focus on the parts that are going to fuel you forward? Let go of the little lies that think that they're useful because they're trying to hate you into changing. We don't change out of frustration.
[00:06:39] The feelings that drive change, that accomplish goals, don't include frustration, self-judgment, and negativism. They include dedication, willingness, clarity, self-love, patience, kindness, connection. These are the type of feelings that help you want to move forward and want to accomplish. So first, clean up your mind.
[00:07:05] The second component to make visualization work is you have to have a clear visual of what you actually want to create. So often we say, "I want to finish this project," or "I want to lose that last 10 pounds," or " I want to have a better relationship with this family member," and we leave it really surface and kind of ambiguous as to what that really means. And it makes it easy for our brains to take shortcuts or disengage and not care about our goals. If you really know what it means to finish that project and how it will feel when you're done with it, your brain has that picture to help you think forward and has desire to create your results.
[00:07:49] Really visualize what it would feel like in your body to lose those last 10 pounds, what type of action would you be doing on a day-to-day basis to be the type of person that has that relationship with their body. That's way more motivating than a number on a scale.
[00:08:10] And when you think about that family member (that your goal is to have a better relationship with them), your brain's going to want to tell you all the ways you failed in the past and want to use fear as a motivator to not go there again and to change.
[00:08:25] What if instead, you already felt connected to the possibilities in that relationship, to the type of person you're going to be in the future when you show up connected, clear, loving. It only takes a few moments of purposeful visualization for you to get a powerful image that will move you forward.
[00:08:50] The third component goes hand-in-hand with a clear visual of what you're trying to create. When you think about that clear visual, what feeling comes for you? Close your eyes and think about that. Think about your goal and what you want to accomplish. Even something as simple as what you're trying to do today. Think about how it would feel when you've accomplished it. Not just what you would do and what you would say and what it would look like, but how would you feel? Tap into that feeling, because that feeling is the secret to get you from where you are now to where you're going to be then. If you start thinking about and visualizing the end goal and really feeling it, that feeling will drive you to have actions that create that. Everything we do is either to avoid or create a feeling. Feelings, drive us. It's what gets the ball moving when we are struggling to want to do our goals.
[00:09:55] So taking these three components where you clean up what is going on in your brain that's going in the way, you visualize where you are wanting to go, and you feel it ahead of time, that will naturally focus your brain forward and drop the behavioral, babysitting, the shame, and the fear of failure because you're excited about what's possible. And sometimes you're not going to feel excited. Sometimes it takes determination. Sometimes it takes a willingness to be uncomfortable. But, knowing that you are focusing forward will make it worth it. And, it will take a lot less willpower and it'll be a lot more fun.
[00:10:41] You already know that this works. Our brains focus on what we tell it is important. If you give your brain the filter of success, it will look for reasons why you're succeeding.
[00:10:54] Here's an example. I have four boys and my husband likes to play random games with them while we're driving to give him something to do so that there's less, " He's touching me!" or, " Are we there yet?" He'll assign points to different things the boys can see around them. He'll say something like, "Whoever finds the coolest Jeep gets the most points." Now my boys have a lens of what to see in their surroundings. They're scanning for Jeeps. And, as I'm passively watching this happen, guess what my brain sees everywhere too? Jeeps. Was I paying attention to Jeeps before that? No, I didn't care about Jeeps driving by, but once I give it that filter, once I have awareness that this is what we're looking for, I see it all over the place.
[00:11:39] What are you telling your brain to look for in your life? Failure? Success? Behaviors from your past? Or possibilities from your future? Possibilities that feel amazing if you bet take time to tap in to what's possible.
[00:11:57] And, this is possible, but it is a little bit difficult to do, I'll admit. You have to take purposeful time to do it. It's not just going to happen by itself.
[00:12:07] So here's today's TLC takeaway: take just one minute—one minute, 60 seconds— and think about what you're trying to create in whatever goal you have right now.
[00:12:22] Maybe it's just a hope at this phase. But, what is it you're wanting next? Take 60 seconds and just visualize what that would be, like. Feel it in your body and remember that feeling. If doubts come up, clean that up, let it go. Give yourself permission to have it be new and go see what's possible for you. A simple 60 seconds could make all the difference to help you actually achieve your goal and obtain that feeling—that amazing feeling—that you followed through on what you deserved to accomplish.
[00:13:05] Practice at believing it's possible. Because it is, if you believe.
[00:13:13] If you want to learn more about how to think light, feel light and live light, then hop on my website, www.thelightcoach.com to schedule a free intro session and explore what's possible for you. That's www.theL-I-G-H-Tcoach.com. I promise you it'll be an adventure that you will never forget.