In my last two blog posts, you read about your ANS – Autonomic Nervous System. We know how important it is to keep ourselves most of the time – every day – in our parasympathetic (rest and digest) as opposed to our sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight).
Even though we know this, most of us stay (unintentionally) in our sympathetic nervous system – which creates dis-ease in our mind and body. One of the major reasons we stay stressed (even when the stressor is no longer there) is our thoughts.
Our thoughts typically run on autopilot and most of the thousands of thoughts per day speak to us loud and clear in a negative voice. We have been wired this way since the beginning of man and woman.
And, if you didn’t have someone nurturing you with kindness and love while growing up, chances are your self critic runs the show in your life.
It’s good to know this but, even better, is to help our self critic become our self champion!
How do we do this?
Here’s a start with my “Mindset – Reframe Practice”.
- Take a Step Back. When something comes up (some yells at us, we get a nasty email, our child doesn’t listen to us….) stop and take 5-10 slow breaths inhaling and exhaling through your nose. As you do this – notice what your thoughts are saying (and how) to you. Before reacting either internally or externally to something that occurs – use these breaths to create space. In this space, you gain freedom so you can choose your response rather than react. Maybe, you want that thought (or thoughts) to be as is. If not (and mostly if not) – it’s time to reframe the thought.
To become more aware of your negative self-talk, it helps to name your negative thoughts. I call my “Sciros”, which rhymes with Chris and is the Gaelic word for destructor. If I start to go down the rabbit hole of destructive thoughts, I’ll say to myself; “Oh, there’s Scrios. What do you have for me today and why?”
Once you determine that your thoughts are not helping you be and live in your love and light– it’s time to reframe.
Here’s some examples of critical self talk I hear a lot with clients (and myself!) and how to reframe them:
Unhelpful thought: This is too hard for me.
Helpful thought: This is new and I am learning.
Unhelpful thought: I am the worst at this.
Helpful thought: I’m not the best at it, and I’m not the
worst either, I am somewhere in between.
Unhelpful thought: I am a bad person.
Helpful thought: I have value. That’s something
I would tell someone I love.
Unhelpful thought: I made a massive mistake and
Helpful thought: I am human.
It is very helpful to remember that you are not your thoughts, you’re simply holding onto them right now.
You’re observing them and providing a safe container for them to exist, but they’re not a reflection of who you are — nor do you need to take action, at least not yet. With this space you create, take the opportunity to reframe your negative thought. This takes practice — and I highly recommend you work with a Health Coach to make this transformation happen. Your wellbeing depends on these champion thoughts not the critical ones.
I hope you can start this Mindset Reframe Practice. Next blog, I’ll cover how you can take this practice even further to help you champion become your prominent thought generator!
To our health and beauty,
nourish. move. meditate.