Most healthcare professionals have a deep desire to improve the health and well-being of their clients. However, many people struggle with mental roadblocks, which keep them from experiencing healthy and fulfilling lives. These mental roadblocks include negative internal dialogue, low self-esteem, and poor life choices.
As a health coach, I’ve worked with a number of clients who self-sabotage. Their roadblocks usually come in the form of procrastination, excuses, and apathy. There is no judgement when I see these clients move on, but in my heart, I know they are suffering. There is no amount of nutrition and fitness coaching I can provide when someone is struggling with a negative mindset.
How best can we modify our mindset to remove these roadblocks, and get on the fast-track for success? We transform our mindset, through belief system modification and behavior change. Sounds simple, right? Not so much. The mindset can be modified, but it is a long-term commitment.
Consider the mindset as a seed to a garden of positive beliefs and behaviors. Each day we make choices as to how we wish to represent ourselves, so consider your mindset as the compass and captain of your journey. Self-awareness and gratitude will help set the tone for cultivating positive change. However, you’ll also need to address bigger issues, such as anger and forgiveness.
You have every tool you need to create lasting change – which includes acceptance and forgiveness of past beliefs ingrained since childhood. Remember, you’re the creator of your present and future circumstances, so put your captain’s hat on, and enjoy the adventure!
“Running from who we are is a chase that never ends, and a race we cannot win. Our legs will get tired, we will run out of fuel, and who we really are will over-take us and we will regret all the miles we ran in the opposite direction.”Sam Davidson
Our belief system is what shapes our everyday actions and choices, but what shaped that belief system? Factors such as childhood, society, and life experience all shape our belief system. If you haven’t yet addressed why you believe what you do, or make the choices you make, take some time to openly and honestly address this aspect of your life.
Consider providing yourself a clean slate from which to define your own belief system. Previous experiences are helpful, but release yourself from the expectations of others. Take a moment to address aspects of your life which may hinder your personal growth and success, and challenge yourself to see from different perspectives.
Compose your personal mission statement
This statement includes your values and intentions. How do you want to represent yourself to the world around you? What are you passionate about, and how can you move your passion into actionable choices and behaviors? High integrity and accountability should be included in your statement, as these attributes are a projection of your personal brand.
Realign your priorities and goals with your passion
What is it you really want to accomplish in this lifetime? Our priorities change over time, but what we are passionate about motivates and moves us forward. If you’re passionate about something, and you’re working in the opposite direction, there will be mental and physical consequences. Direct your intentions and actions to the things that bring you joy. Incorporate your personal mission into your priorities, and put your passion into action.
Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure.Tony Robbins
It’s one thing to decide you want a mindset shift and belief system reboot. It’s another to see them to fruition. Long-term behavior change takes time, so be prepared for those roadblocks. However, be boldly curious about why those roadblock are in place, and modify your perspective to see these simply as speed bumps.
Cultivate a positive inner dialogue
Not much growth comes from a negative inner dialogue. Negative inner dialogue can turn into rumination, anxiety, and even depression. If you’ve struggled with low self-esteem, seek professional assistance to create a positive sense of self.
If you have toxic relationships, consider surrounding yourself with positive people who will encourage you to be your best, and to live authentically. Each time you hear your negative inner dialogue, immediately switch it to a positive narrative.
Replace reaction with pause
Too often we are in a reactive state. When our body is in a reactive (fight or flight) state, our bodies release stress hormones, which have negative effects on our mental and physical health. Every day we are coping with life stressors.
Consider practicing pause to reduce reactive behavior. It can be difficult to be still or quiet when you feel the need to act or respond. However, embracing pause can benefit your mind and body. Next time you feel the need to react, ask yourself three questions:
- Am I acting or saying something out of frustration or anger?
- Am I listening with the intention to collaborate and problem-solve? Or, am I in a state of ego – needing to be heard, or right?
- Will what I do or say increase a positive outcome?
Plan for the future, but stay grounded in the present
There are certain aspects of life that are out of our control. We can plan for the future, but it is essential to live in the present. Gratitude for what we have, right now, can help alleviate anxiety about what we feel we could or should have acquired or accomplished. Every day we have so much to be thankful for.
Small moments, such as a smile from your child’s face, the beauty of a neighbor’s rose garden, or the simple act of taking a walk in the sunshine. These small, but powerful moments help increase our resiliency while we plan for the future.
Learn from failure
Failure happens. Even the most powerful people have seen moments of failure. Walt Disney was fired from his first cartoonist job because he “lacked imagination and original ideas.” A mistake is a solution waiting to happen. Failure is an option…it’s a step closer to growth and success.
Modifying your mindset through belief system and behavior change can bring past difficulties to the surface, so remember you’re not alone while moving through this change. Seek assistance from a health professional, such as a mental health counselor or life coach.
Take as much time as you need to move through this process, and remain curious about what tools work best for you. Stay mindful of how you are perceiving the world around you, and reframe where needed. There’s no finish line for your journey to personal and professional success, so slow down, breathe, and keep your mindset focused on living your best life!