Change Your Mindset: How To Stop Negotiating With Yourself
If you’ve been following me over on Instagram you know I’ve been working my way through the Last 90 Day Challenge. Part of the challenge is working out every day for 30 minutes. I’m proud to say I’m on day 15 and I’ve stuck with it so far! However, even though I was able to make myself workout I realized I was spending a lot of time negotiating with myself to make myself do it. My inner dialogue has been a total disaster and it has made working out really hard. I was constantly having thoughts like:
“I’m so sore from yesterday….maybe I’ll skip just this ONE workout”
“I can do it later, I don’t need to do it NOW”
“I have so much work to do……I really don’t have time to workout”
“Who even works out EVERY day anyway?”
I realized these thoughts are making achieving my goal of working out every single day way more difficult. My inner dialogue around getting my workout done is just standing in my way and making the completing the last 90 days challenge a struggle. The great thing about being self-aware is that we can DECIDE to change or control our thoughts. Here is everything I am doing to change my thought process for the rest of the challenge. I am doing this to help me work out but you can do this in an area where you find yourself negotiating with yourself instead of just taking action to get the things done that you need to do. Negotiating is draining and it doesn’t serve you. I hope these tips help you change your mindset and stop negotiating with yourself. If you’re interested in hearing more check out the podcast episode I recorded all about how I shifted my mindset to stop negotiating with myself (on Podbean or iTunes).
In order to change your mindset and stop negotiating you need to have a clear goal and know what you want. It is much more difficult to negotiate to yourself if you’ve made a commitment and have a clear task you need to get done. I’m working out every single day for the rest of the year but yours can be any task you need to get done. Maybe you want to stop negotiating with yourself about doing the dishes and cleaning the kitchen at night. Set a clear goal to have the kitchen clean by a certain time every night. I find that deadlines and challenges really help me stay on track. Once you have your deadline to clean the kitchen every night you need to make a commitment that you will NOT negotiate with yourself about putting it off or doing it later. I really love Mel Robbins 5 second rule for getting yourself to do tasks without negotiation. If you haven’t seen her TED Talk you can find it here. She has you train yourself to count down from 5 before you do a task and then start as soon as you hit 1. The trick is that you train yourself that you never negotiate with yourself once you get to 1 you commit to ALWAYS getting started and doing the task that you are putting off. In her book, she discusses all the reasons the counting actually works to help you train your brain. If you don’t have a clear goal it is going to be too easy to negotiate yourself out of doing the tasks you want to do every day.
Have a Strong WHY
A lot of time we fail at our goals because we don’t have a strong reason why. I really only started to be able to make myself do the work required to achieve my goals once I created a mission statement for my life and tied my goals to it. For example, losing weight wasn’t a strong enough reason why I should exercise every day. Once I tied it to my personal mission statement that gave me a stronger reason to stick to my workout plan. My mission statement is to live a bold life and to help a fuck ton of women do the same. I recognize to do this I need to feel good and have a lot of energy. It is impossible for me to live out my mission statement if I’m tired, sick or just overall in poor health. Here are some journal prompts to help you change your mindset and create your personal mission statement.
What do you want to achieve in this lifetime?
What could you do with your life that would light you up?
If you knew that you couldn’t fail what would you do?
Use these prompts to get clear on what your purpose is in your life. Your mission statement needs to feel really freaking POWERFUL. It needs to light you up. It could be to become the best Mother that you possibly can or to change a lot of lives with your best-selling book. If you’re struggling to get motivated to work on your goals I would challenge you to create a stronger reason WHY you want to develop the habit or reach the goal. After you create your mission statement ask yourself how can I make this even more POWERFUL? Connect all of your tasks and goals to your mission statement by asking yourself how doing this task every day will support you in living your dream life.
I am a big believer in creating vision boards but even if you don’t want to do that I still think you need to have a clear vision for your life. What are you trying to create for yourself? What do you want out of life? Where do you want to go? How do you want to feel? Having a clear vision for my future helps me stay motivated and I’m able to slowly start piecing together the life I want and the person I want to become. I know the version of myself I want to become exercises every day and has tons of energy. Visualizing who I am becoming and what my life is like helps me start to step into the version of myself that loves working out and is in great shape. I don’t think you should build habits just for the sake of it or just because someone told you to. Try and figure out what habits you can start adding to your life that will really move you closer to living your dream life.
Here are some journal prompts to help you visualize your future.
-What does the happiest version of yourself do every day?
-If you were living your dream life what would your morning routine be?
-What habits do you need to do every day to live life as the most successful version of yourself?
-What would it feel like to be able to complete all your tasks without any negotiation or mental struggle?
Make a Plan
Once you have a clear goal and a strong why you need to make a plan. Figure out exactly what you are trying to achieve, how it ties to your why and make a plan for what you need to do and when. I find committing to doing something long-term feels unachievable to me and I end up losing motivation fast. Try setting your plan for the next week. I like to do this every Sunday night so I know exactly what I want to achieve that week and when I am going to do it. Breaking things down into a week challenge feels doable to me. You can start with one or two habits you want to build and then add on from there. For example, you could challenge yourself to have the kitchen cleaned by 6 pm every night this week. Make sure you keep track of your progress to help you stay accountable. Make a tracker sheet in your journal or hang a checklist on the fridge. Every night before I go to sleep I create my to-do list for the next day and check off the progress I made the night before.
Set The Intention
Remember, you are not only committing to cleaning the kitchen by 6pm every night but you are also committing to doing it without ANY negotiation. In order to change your mindset you have to be really clear about what your mental process will be life for getting this task done. Here are some of my affirmations I am using to get myself to workout every single day without any mental negotiation.
-I workout seven days a week without even thinking about it
-Daily workouts are automatic for me and getting myself to do them is so easy
-I workout without even thinking about it
-I always keep the commitments I make to myself
-I never try to talk myself out of my goals
-Working out everyday is second nature to me
-I always follow through with my goals
-I am unstoppable and I never think about quitting or not finishing something
Besides setting affirmations I also did a lot of journaling to help me break the habit of negotiating my workouts. I try to use journaling as a way to step into the version of myself that never negotiates or talks herself out of working out. Here are some of the prompts I used.
-What would it feel like to workout without negotiation?
-How does the most badass version of myself prepare for workouts?
-What would it feel like if daily workouts were second nature to me?
Break The Habit
In order to stop negotiating with yourself and change your mindset, you need to commit to being mindful of your internal dialogue. It’s easy to let thoughts slip in when we’re not paying attention especially when we are in the habit of negotiating with ourselves. You need to know how you will redirect your thoughts when you catch yourself trying to talk yourself out of sticking to your plan. For example, whenever I start thinking about how I don’t want to do my workout I start saying my affirmations in my head instead. If you don’t want to do affirmations you could direct your thoughts to focus on how it will feel to achieve your goals in the future or something else you are excited about instead. Make a commitment to being very aware of your thoughts and to redirect them any time you notice you are thinking about something that will make doing your tasks more difficult. This really is a hard habit to break but I’ve been working on it for a few days and I already notice a big difference! It is much easier to do my workouts every day when I don’t allow myself to think about how hard it is or how much I don’t want to do it. Thinking positive thoughts and saying my affirmations instead has made the struggle I had around done my workouts every day almost non-existent.
I hope this guide helps you change your mindset and stop negotiating with yourself and makes getting your tasks done easier. When I was in the habit of constantly negotiating my workouts it made achieving my fitness goals feel really difficult. This simple mindset shift and commitment to not negotiate my goals anymore has really helped me. I want to achieve my goals to feel easy and effortless. Letting my brain constantly trying to talk me out of doing what I need to do made working out every day feel difficult. I’m excited to continue this practice around other areas of my life and to train myself to do what I need to do every day without the internal struggle in my mind.
I am not a licensed therapist or mental health professional. If you are suffering from a major disorder and need treatment please seek the help of a professional. If you need help finding a mental health care provider call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit BetterHelp to talk to a certified therapist online at an affordable price. You can download a free printable list of hotlines here and join the free mental health support group on Facebook here. This post contains affiliate links, you can read my full disclosure policy here.
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