Changing our day-to-day behaviours may be easier than previously imagined.
If we believe something to be easy, we find little, if any struggle in accomplishing it. However, if we imagine something to be difficult to accomplish, then our struggle becomes more apparent. In fact, if we imagine that it is difficult to change a specific behaviour, then we will always find experiences that will justify that belief.
Take this for example. We wake up one morning and decide that:
“This is the day I start losing weight. When things get difficult, I will not reach for junk food, but instead, I will focus on something else to keep my mind occupied. It’ll be tough at first, but I’m going to give it a try.”
If you continue with this thought pattern and belief, don’t be surprised to find yourself struggling more often than not. Why?
If we look at this example closely we find a couple of thought patterns and beliefs already in place. We have determined to do something good for ourselves, but we do ourselves a disservice by choosing certain negative thought patterns, beliefs and words that go along with it.
We have said,
“When things get difficult….”
(This is already assuming that there will be difficult moments! Strike one!)
“It’ll be tough at first…”
(This is already assuming it will be difficult at first! Strike two!)
“…but I’m going to give it a try.”
(Remember the movie “The Karate Kid”…”There is no “try”, there is only “do”. Strike three!)
Now there are hundreds of products out there that will assist people in losing weight. Some, if not all of them, may work for various people at various stages of their goal. But for many people who have convinced themselves that losing weight is difficult, some products may fall short when our thought patterns are stronger than our desire to change.
Here is something that I’ve done to change a behaviour I no longer desired.
I recently lost 10lbs in about 12 weeks. I didn’t like the way I looked, felt or even thought for that matter. I needed to change and take some action towards it.
First, I realised that I had to change my way of thinking about losing weight. My old thought patterns were no longer working for me. My thoughts were like little tiny pictures that I projected in my mind of how heavy I was. I no longer wanted these pictures or thought patterns a part of my life. I had to choose a thought pattern and belief that would be easier to think about.
I chose this thought, “Losing weight is easier than I thought.”
Perhaps not the most ideal for everyone but it worked for me.
Secondly, I chose a word I wanted to focus on for that day, week or month to help me in accomplishing my goal (Start with just a day, or just an hour for that matter. Keep it simple.) The word I chose needed to be in relation to the change I want to make. For example, I chose the word “FOCUS”, as I felt that that’s what I needed to think about most of the time; focusing more on losing weight than gaining it. Choose any word as long as it relates to your situation. (Attitude, Energy, Action, Believe…)
Following that, I scoured the Internet for motivational and inspirational quotes that resonated within me that related to that specific word I chose. Quotes that I could remember, especially ones that really spoke to what I wanted to accomplish.
I needed quotes that were powerful enough to change my thought patterns the moment I read them. Quotes that REALLY spoke to me when my eyes fell upon them. Quotes that forced me to pause and think for a moment. Quotes that had that extra “edge” where my mind said, “Yes. This is one.”
These are all signs of a quote that held power for me. I “focused” in on the following quotes.
“All that we are is the result of what we have thought.” Buddha
“The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible.” Arthur C. Clarke
“It’s not what you achieve in the end that matters, it’s who you become in the process.” Author Unknown
In fact, I found dozens of quotes that I resorted to from time to time, but these three I always came back to. They spoke of who I was, what I wanted to accomplish and who I wanted to become as I worked towards my goal.
I wrote them down. I carried these quotes with me constantly. I focused on these three powerful quotes to help me FOCUS on what I wanted.
Because I changed my thought patterns, over time, I can honestly say I am 10 lbs lighter and a whole lot happier. I can honestly say I am 20 lbs lighter and a whole lot happier. Yes, I’ll be the first to admit that accomplishing the goal involved more than just thinking but it all began with my thoughts. The thoughts then permeated into my actions. (Now I need to FOCUS on maintaining that weight, so for me, a whole new thought pattern begins.)
Here are the three steps again:
1. Decided to change your way of thinking about a behaviour, making it easier for you to think about it. Phrase it in a simple way.
2. Choose a word to focus on to change that behaviour for a period of time.
3. Find a minimum of three motivational or inspirational quotes related to that specific word that is powerful enough to change your current thought patterns the moment you read them. Meditate on them and repeat them, silently or out loud, every chance you get.
Be patient. Stick with it. Give it some time.
Why do you think companies offer a 30-day money-back guarantee? They know that if you do something for 30 days it becomes a habit and you no longer need to return it! (Learned something, huh?) Give it time.
The first step to what you want to accomplish is changing your mind and the thought patterns and beliefs associated with your behaviour. Thoughts are the precursor to action, meaning that thoughts occur before any action takes place. That’s what needs to be changed first. Your thoughts.
It worked for me and I hope this inspires and motivates you to achieve your goal.