The things you say in everyday conversation may be more damaging than the inner dialogue you have at 3am after a single shit-storm. Self-limiting beliefs are much closer to us in reach than empowering mantras are, so we have to make a conscious effort to skip over them to reach for thoughts and phrases that will actually serve us, rather than harm us. That effort means recognizing the small things and making a conscious shift in what we say and do, so that what we put out into the universe is, in fact, what we get back. Because that’s always the case, isn’t it? And wouldn’t you rather the universe send back strength and confidence, rather than limitations? If you want that to change, you have to learn to change the things you say.
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1. Easier said than done
The moment you say it, you start to believe that whatever it is, will be an uphill climb. But what’s actually happening is that you’re verbalizing your fear.
Someone tells you about the light at the end of the tunnel, or how to get x,y,z, and your mind immediately goes to the work you’ll have to do, or the fears you’ll have to face, or the things you care about that you’ll have to release. Those thoughts can be scary, but by setting the stage as a complicated experience, you give yourself permission to not follow through.
You’re creating a storyline and you’re setting your start point below zero, assuming it’s hard before you even try.
2. This ALWAYS happens to me
Here, you’re giving up responsibility over the things that happen to you. You’re placing yourself in the center of chaos, pain, or whatever this is, painting yourself as a bright target, with arms wide open, ready to be hit. Because the same things just happen to you and you’re the victim. A strike of bad luck has declared that you’re doomed to experience the same let down over, and over again.
But here’s the problem: you’re the one painting yourself a target, and until you realize that, you will continue to stand in that center of chaos.
You’re placing the blame on the outside, but not owning up to the inside; and then complaining about being submerged in a lack of balance.
3. I’m the type of person that…
So you’ve already become the person you’re going to be the rest of your life? You’ve completed a mere quarter or third of your life, and that’s it? Set in stone? No more character development?
This is one of the most limiting things you could say, and ironically, it’s the easiest to slip by unnoticed. Of course, we have character traits we’ve been developing since adolescence; and of course, by now, we should have some kind of understanding about our strengths, flaws, and weaknesses. Actually, it’s important to be able to identify these things in order to grow.
In fact, in some ways, this goes hand-in-hand with self-awareness. Know who you are, so you can become.
But you know what realization comes with actual self-awareness? The understanding that we are forever evolving. That we feel, we act and react based on our environment and that we are a bi product of our surroundings. All of this can change, and therefore, so can you.
So yes, we must be able to identify these things in our character in order to grow, but to use them as a crutch and to hide behind them, actually stunts that potential for growth.
Take Action: Your Words are POWERFUL
Instead of letting the power of your words define your limitations, why not use them to define your potential?
Instead of saying easier said than done when someone is giving you advice, take it and say, “If others have done it, so can I.” And of course, you could say that nothing is impossible and that others having achieved something shouldn’t be the bar with which you compare yourself to, but the truth of the matter is, when life is hard, knowing others have done it is good enough.
Instead of saying this always happens to me, say something like, “I refuse to let this happen to me again.” Take ownership of your circumstances and stop playing the victim. If you keep surrounding yourself with toxic people, toxic things will happen to you. Nothing will change if you, yourself, do not change.
Instead of saying I’m the type of person that, learn to be the person you are in that very moment: a human being who may be feeling a specific emotion to its extreme. Yes, you are someone who’s developed consistent traits throughout your life, but so what? Smokers quit smoking. Angry people find peace. Assholes find love. Things change and nothing is set in stone.
The things you say are a reflection of your thoughts. The things you think define your reality. Learn to control the things you say and your reality will begin to change.