Believing in one’s abilities and actions is the most significant tool for achieving sustainable change. We need to boost our belief in ourselves so it outweighs the resistance to change.
First comes an internal change then comes an external change, this is why self-belief is so imperative to development. It is all a state of mind.
TIPS TO CREATE A MIND SET WHICH MAKES CHANGE HAPPEN
1. Think About Your Past
Reoccurring thoughts, patterns of behaviours and experiences which are inhibiting, painful and dysfunctional is a sign of unresolved and unprocessed issues. By understanding them you can learn to manage, process or reconfigure them.
• Write down a list of issues you struggle with
• Make notes on any links you think could be related to past events or experiences or even have caused it
• Note your emotions that relate to this experience
• Write down ideas of how the situation could be improved/managed
• Write down any realisations you might have during this process or anything that you had not thought of before
If this feels overwhelming share it with another or seek professional advice
2. Face Your Fears
Fears are often exaggerated, distorted and/or illogical. There are many reasons our fears exist. Freedom and relief are natural by-products in recognising your fears and establishing where they came from.
• List all your fears
• Note when and where these fears began
• Write down why you think you have these fears
• Write next to them whether they are rational or irrational fears and the reasons why
• Write down how it feels where you are in this state of fear, what thoughts or scenarios go through your head
• Next to your thoughts and scenarios right down whether they are irrational or rational fears – if irrational write next to them what a rational response would be to that fear
• If a rational fear think of how you could control the situation to make it more manageable
3. Find Time to Think About You
Looking after yourself both mind and body is vital for growth and development. Part of self-reflection is giving yourself time to focus on your interests and creating a space solely for you. It’s a progressive and nourishing trait which will develop thinking, productivity and satisfaction
• Take daily time out to think about what is going on for you (1hr in the evening, or break up within a day 15 minutes in the morning, lunch and evening),
• Find space where you feel you can think and which is solely for you,
• Make a list of your dreams, goals or life wants,
• Be honest with yourself,
• When in times of stress take more time out, create a set time to think, write and off load
4. Think About Life’s Meaning
Your past and present experiences impact on the future that is created so it’s important to look at all that you are and have been as well as possibly will be.
• How would you summarise your life so far? Make a timeline, break it up into sections, self-development, career, family, home, finances, relationships, social life, health,
• Are there any patterns in your relationships, your jobs, your behaviour, your moods, your thoughts etc.
• Prioritise aspects of your life in terms of importance, past, present and possibly future in regards to experiences, situations or events,
• Scale, from 1-10 how much energy, each aspect of your life takes up,
• What have you noticed, what has surprised you, and what you like to be different
5. Disconnect from the Virtual World
Disconnecting from the virtual world is about turning your focus away from what you can’t control and back to everything you can control. We constantly compare ourselves with other people’s ideals. If excessive this leads to a difficulty in separating our wants and needs from others.
• Have dedicated screen time,
• Recognise when you start obsessing and find a distraction (reading, going out, an activity, gym etc.),
• Write a journal of how it makes you feel,
• Get rid of the negative posts, cull anything that doesn’t feed you. If you find yourself being in shock, upset or annoyed by regular posts, unfollow
6. Take Stock of what You Have Already
We can lose sight of what we have already got, the people in our lives who nourish us and things which we have just come to expect, getting caught up in the haves and have nots. Taking time to recognise what is already good about our lives builds appreciation and gratitude increasing health and happiness.
• Write a list of things which make you happy, give you energy and where you go when you’re sad, stressed etc.
• Make a list of things that drain you, what you avoid doing and which makes you feel bad about yourself,
• Write down things which can be changed, what you would like to change and possible ways to do this,
• Think of the things you have in your life (not just the relationships) things you use often, what you need, what you could not do without, what you treasure,
7. Learn when to Let Go
We hold onto things in our head, events from our past, painful experiences, difficult relationships, and current and future worries even when we know they are detrimental to our health and wellbeing. We need to prioritise what is really important to us and to do this sometimes we need to let go.
• What do you spend most of your time thinking about, make a list,
• Are any of those productive thoughts? If so strike it off,
• Of the unproductive thoughts, what are they achieving, and why are they taking up space in your head, what are the feelings associated with?
• If they don’t benefit you why do you think you are holding onto them?
8. Say Goodbye to Guilt
Guilt is all-consuming. Constantly questioning your actions, forever being concerned with what other people think is exhausting and useless. It is, however, under your control
• What do you get guilty about?
• Start to write down a list when you feel guilty and see if any patterns arise,
• What do you think the guilt relates to, a person, an event, a past experience, a possible situation?
• Is it a fair guilt or are you holding someone else’s guilt?
• How can you get rid of this guilt? What makes you feel better?
• Is this guilt really your responsibility?
• Where does it come from and can you make changes to limit your exposure to this feeling?
9. Be Confident
Lack of self-confidence comes from within and only you can give yourself this gift.
• Focus on your achievements, write a list of all your achievements and how it felt when you achieved them,
• List what you like about yourself,
• List things you are proud to say are part of your character,
• Reflect on how you talk to yourself, do you call yourself stupid, ugly or fat. Remove that self-talk and put post-its around your house that remind you of all the great things about you, (put them on places you will see them often, fridge, mirror, coffee cup)
10. Take a Close Look at the Relationships Around You
Relationships are meant to be reciprocal and nourishing but they can become one-sided and draining. Relationships come and go throughout one’s life. You always have a choice in the relationships you savour and those you allow to drift, with the possibility of
• List all your friends and relationships (you can split into areas of your life, professional, work, family, social friends, gym friends etc.)
• Write down how much you see them,
• Write down how much energy they take up in your life and whether that is negative or positive energy,
• Write down why you like being friends with them and how they benefit you,
• Think of past relationships, write how they made you feel, do you wish you had held on to them or were they for a specific time in your life?
• Do you have a relationship pattern? Is it gender specific? What do you get out of this pattern, is it detrimental or is it nourishing?
• Remove toxic relationships and get in touch with old missed relationships (it’s never too late, nothing to lose)
11. Note Your Life Rules
Rules to which you live by are of your own creation. You make the rules which work for you and for your relationships. You are also the one who can break them.
• Write down any life rules that are important to you, that you stick to (i.e. personal boundaries, space you require, tolerance you have, patience, relationship boundaries, or even concrete rules such as table manners or bathroom etiquette)
• Think of which rules are based solely on what you have been taught from your parents/upbringing and what rules you made on your own through your own individual experiences
• List what you will tolerate and what won’t you, what is a firm rules and what might be more flexible?
• Write down any experiences of when you felt that your boundaries, space, person had been disrespected, violated or ignored, what happened? how did you feel? In this a regularly occurrence? If so why?
• What have you done or do to stop your rules/boundaries from being broken/crossed by yourself or others?
• Why are these rules so important to you and why do you think they have been created – what is their purpose?
• Are your boundaries efficient, or are they too efficient (i.e. no one is allowed in and are kept at a distance – defensive)