Affirmations Don’t Work But this Simple Strategy Does
Have you ever tried positive affirmations? They’re great, don’t get me wrong. But to me, it always felt a little bit like I was trying to shoe-horn a thought into my head when my subconscious mind was thinking “yeah, nice try.” Lots of personality development gurus tell us that our mindset is the key.
It’s hard to win the outer game if we are still battling and believing in our limiting beliefs. And I believe that is one hundred percent true. However, it’s not as simple as flipping a switch. “Just think another thought” is easier said than done.But what if it didn’t have to be so hard?What if we could change your mindset easily? With just one simple step, repeated daily?
1. Riddle Me This
Many people have said that the brain is the world’s best super computer. Well, there is a distinct difference between a computer and your brain. When a computer is given a command or a request that it does not have the programming for, it rejects the command. Does not compute.
The brain, the other hand, can’t reject a question. Our brains are puzzle solving machines. Ask yourself the same question enough times, and your brain will supply an answer.Ah, but there’s a catch.The brain will come up with an answer – no matter the quality of the question. Do you ever hear yourself saying, “Why was I so stupid?”.“Why did I do that?”“Why do I even bother trying?”
2. Subconscious Mind
Eventually, your brain will supply an answer.Here’s another catch. No one wants to think of themselves as crazy. It’s hard wired into our subconscious minds. Therefore, we subconsciously find evidence out in the world to support our thoughts. It’s called confirmation bias. We believe what we see and we see what we believe.
So, if we ask ourselves negative questions, the brain will come up with negative answers. And then the brain will look for evidence to support those answers. As if to say, “You see, I was right.”
“Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, get better answers.”- Tony Robbins
3. Better Questions are Smaller Questions
“Ok, I get it. I’ll start asking myself better questions.” There is one more thing to consider. The quality of the question matters, but so does the SIZE of the question. I once listened to an inspiring podcast by a guy who described his morning routine. It was an impressive morning routine and I tried it out. Part of the routine including asking yourself big bold questions like….
“Who do I want to be today? What am I passionate about? What are my values?” These are big, inspiring….and somewhat terrifying questions to ask yourself at 5:03 in the morning. Only after reading “One Small Step Can Change Your Life” by Robert Maurer did I understand why these questions did not work for me.
4. Change in Life
The subconscious mind is quite finicky and it really likes the status quo. The subconscious mind does not care about our happiness – only our survival. And keeping things “normal” means we get to survive. But change is NOT normal. Anything that requires growth is scary, and thus, is interpreted as a threat in the subconscious mind.
When we introduce change, the subconscious mind detects fear. And therefore it hits the breaks – HARD.The way to get around the subconscious mind’s alarm system is to ask little, tiny, easy questions. But ones that leave an open ending so that your curious, puzzle solving mind can play with the answer.
- What is one small thing I can do today to improve my health?
- What is one small thing I can do today to reach out to new business partners?
- In what way can I appreciate myself?
- What is one small thing that I really like about my body?
If you ask yourself the same question enough times, your mind will produce an answer.
5. Small, Tiny steps, can Produce Giant Results
Because they bypass the alarm system of the subconscious mind and make change a small, slow easy process, rather than a giant terrifying HARD one.So try asking yourself simple, open ended questions in regards to the things you are trying to improve in your life. The answers will feel so much TRUER if you think of them yourself, rather than trying to shoe-horn them in to your brain.
Lizzie Merritt Bio: Are you interested in making peace with the imperfect body? Check out former fitness professional Lizzie Merritt’s blog. She is the author of the book 7 Ways to Willpower (available on Amazon.) You can click here to get your copy of her FREE special report, 23 Simple Weight Loss Hacks.