Shifting your mindset to be more positive is one of the most powerful ways to change your life! Your mind is like Google. Any question you ask, your brain will find an answer to. How is your inner chatter? Is it empowering or self-critical? If you’re struggle to be kind to yourself, keep reading to learn how to start applying the best mindset shift that helped me heal my body image issues.
Your mind is like Google.
Your mind is like a giant search engine. Any question you ask yourself, your brain will create an answer for. Even if the question or “search term” isn’t applicable to you. So for example, if you ask yourself “why am I a purple donkey?” Your mind will automatically start searching for evidence that you are, in fact, a purple donkey. It may flash a memory of a time you wore a purple dress. Or acted like an ass (lol couldn’t help myself!) But you are obviously not a purple donkey! Despite your mind’s best efforts to come up with valid reasons why you are.
It may sound silly. But our brains are wired to consider all possibilities to be true based on our life’s experiences. Which then makes us believe it to be true. Because it seems like valid evidence. As far-fetched as it may actually be.
Self-Criticism is a Negative Search Term
Just as the purple donkey example, when you ask yourself self-critical questions, your mind will come up with reasons why your criticism is true. As chronic yo-yo dieters, we consistently put ourselves into situations where we are either “on plan” and considered good. Or we “fall off the wagon” and feel bad. This leads to consistently being in a negative mindset where we are judging ourselves and feeling guilty about our behaviors.
Do you frequently ask yourself questions like:
- “Why am I so fat?”
- “Why did I eat that?”
- “Why am I so lazy?”
- “Why can’t I stick to my diet?”
- “Why can’t I trust myself around food?”
- …essentially asking yourself, “Why am I the worst?!”
These are all negative search terms. And your mind WILL search for a reason why you are fat, eating badly, lazy, can’t stick to your diet, can’t trust yourself around food. Why you’re the worst. When listed out like that, it breaks my heart that I used to consistently ask myself questions like this. It’s no wonder I had bad body image and was in serious need of a mindset shift.
How to apply this mindset shift to change your life!
Step 1. Awareness
The first step to identifying if you’re in need of a mindset shift is to bring awareness to how you’re speaking to yourself. Take a few days to pay more attention to your inner dialogue. What are the questions or search terms you’re frequently asking yourself? Are they empowering and positive questions? Or are they mean, insulting and critical like the list above? How is your brain being triggered to respond?
Journal the most frequent questions that you’re asking yourself. This will give you the best insight to where your mindset currently is. It will also help you uncover themes and insecurities. For example, this awareness exercise may reveal the diet mentality, body image issues, financial insecurities, relationship worries, parenting woes, etc.
Step 2. Ask Better Questions
The coolest thing about all this is, if your brain is capable of coming up with reasons why you’re failing. Then it can certainly come up with reasons why you’re winning! To create this mindset shift though, you need to change your search terms by asking better questions.
Instead of asking “why am I so fat?” Ask yourself, “why am I beautiful?” Rather than judging yourself for your food choices, you can ask “how did I take care of my body today?” Or “how was I healthy?”
Do you see how you can flip your questions to be more positive? Asking yourself better phrased questions will lead to you priming your mind for kinder “search results.”
Step 3. Practice this Mindset Shift
Practice, practice, practice! It takes a bit to get used to this more positive way of thinking. But that’s totally normal. Especially if you’re someone who has been speaking unkindly to yourself. And asking your mind negative search terms for quite some time.
Now, whenever I notice myself in a negative mindset. Asking myself self-critical questions. I immediately interrupt the thought pattern. And change my questions to be more encouraging, empowering and supportive of my efforts. This truly will change your life!
Your mindset determines your experience.
Circumstances are often out of your control. But you are 100% in control of your mindset. That doesn’t mean you won’t have moments where you have invasive, negative thoughts. However, when you practice this mindset shift, you can instantly stop the negative. And shift to the positive. By asking better questions.
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