What’s the one thing that’s held you back most over the years in accomplishing your goals?
Probably procrastination. Trust me, you’re not alone. It may be caused, in part, by how you talk to yourself.
Think about it. Have you ever worked for or been close to someone who constantly beats you down? Constantly tells you all the negative things about yourself. Consistently pushes you down instead of lifts you up. You know the type:
“Why can’t you just get this right!?”
“How is this so hard for you!?”
If you’ve worked for someone like this odds are they didn’t get the best out of you. You probably did just enough to get by and not get in trouble.
You may have even… procrastinated a little bit…
Or a lot.
Why? Because humans aren’t motivated that way! At least not in the long term.
So why do so many of us coach OURSELVES that way?
Accomplishing anything requires motivation because sitting on your butt and procrastinating is really really easy.
To do something we MUST have motivation in order to overcome not doing something.
Newsflash – talking $#!+ to yourself isn’t the best way to get motivated.
Let’s contrast the bad coaching above to a good coach/boss/person you’ve had in your life.
Think back to a great coach or boss you had. Someone who got the best out of you. Someone who inspired you to be your best. There’s a good chance they spoke to you as someone who cared about you and wanted the best for you.
Odds are they probably saw more in you than you saw in yourself, they probably said things like:
“You can do this.”
“I have confidence in you”
“We didn’t hit our goal last week, how are we going to improve this week?”
Since, I assume you care about yourself and that you want the best for you. It’s important you make sure you talk to yourself in a way that reflects that.
Compare good coaching and bad coaching and ask yourself honestly, “which of these coaches do I sound like when I talk to myself?”
If you answered “the mean coach” it’s time to start fixing that because you’ve got things you want to accomplish.
- Be Mindful – You have to catch yourself in the act. Once you’re aware of negative self talk you can start to change it.
- Think Pull Not Push – Instead of saying things that push you down like “Why can’t I just do this!?” try saying something that pulls you up like “How can I do this best?” or “How can I improve over last week?”
- Be Consistent – Changing self talk requires consistency if it’s going to stick. It will take time but if you’re consistent YOU WILL get there and the benefits are greater than anything you can imagine.
- Be Kind – I’ll say it now. You’re gonna have failures as you try to implement this new way of thinking. That’s ok! Just accept it when you fail and remind yourself you’ll continue to get better at talking to yourself until you’ve got it. See #3.
These are simple steps, but not easy steps. Remember you care about you. Remember you want the best for yourself.
Most importantly remember Rome wasn’t built in a day. Get better consistently, even slowly, and I promise you’ll get there.