What do you say when you talk to yourself?
I'll give it a try, but I just don’t think I can do it”. “There is no way I can improve this relationship, but I’ll make one more attempt”. Or are you one of the few who practices positive self-talk? “I have faced tough situations before and I know I can make this happen”. “I have the confidence and skills necessary to help me succeed.”
Your mind believes what you tell it repeatedly with feeling. Your imagination is a powerful thing. Here’s an example: Imagine picking a large, ripe lemon. You slice it open and let the juices flow out. You smell the tangy fruit. Now you bite into the lemon and let the imaginary juice fill your mouth. Is your mouth watering? Albert Einstein said that imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.
Jack, a recent coaching client of ours, needed a new strategy to help him overcome his frustration of always coming up short when he wanted to achieve his goals. He had a strong desire to be a successful stock broker. He started with enthusiasm but soon seemed to run out of gas when he found himself a below average producer. He loved golf but could never successfully compete. He would begin the season with high expectations but he never seemed to improve. This same pattern existed in other areas of his life as well, including his relationships with other people.
We asked Jack to write down what he quietly said to himself when he was engaged in working toward what he wanted. As you can imagine, his thoughts were less than positive. “I guess I'm not meant to be a stockbroker.” “What wrong with me?” “It’s not my fault.” If only I was stronger, smarter, younger, older. He was talking himself into not succeeding. So we asked Jack to write a new thought next to every negative thought. We asked him to make a commitment to think about his new thoughts morning, noon, and night, with positive imagination and to continue this for ten days.
Was it easy for him? No! Did it work? Yes! Was it instant and like magic? No! It was a gradual process but Jack soon had a new momentum and to him it seemed like magic. He was becoming free from his old self defeating habits.
Ask yourself this: “What in my life is not quite the way I want it do be?” “What am I thinking about? What will I be thinking about starting today?”
“The inner speech, your thoughts, can cause you to be rich or poor, loved or unloved, happy or unhappy, attractive or unattractive, powerful or weak.” --James Allen