The #1 Dream Killer
If you asked me three years ago if I could climb this rope without using my legs, here is what I might have said:
There’s no way I could do that.
That seems impossible.
How is that even human?
Sound familiar to you?
The way you identify yourself (no matter how automatic, mindless, or harmless it might seem) makes all the difference in your weight loss journey. How many times do you find yourself thinking of your weight loss journey and telling yourself any of the following:
I can’t give up carbs — I can’t survive without them
I love sugar; it’s impossible to give it up
I’m not a person who can give up sugar or flour
I’m too lazy to exercise
Nurse Charmaine is just special — she is just an ambitious person, and I’m not
I am not disciplined enough to do that
I have a weak mind
I need carbs to function
I’m too tired to do any of that
This list can literally go on for miles. How many of those thoughts do you find yourself believing on a regular basis? And how helpful are those thoughts? The reason why our brain automatically turns to those thoughts whenever we set new goals for ourselves and create dreams is simply because of this:
The primitive brain is a drama queen.
By primitive brain, I mean the part of your brain that only wants to do the following:
Whenever we are faced to do something new or different, our primitive brain doesn’t like that because it wants to be efficient and recycle the same thoughts and neural pathways it has been used to for years (because it’s the way more quick & easy route for the brain to function)! The good news is this — we also have our “evolved” brains that DO actually want to accomplish crazy goals that we’ve never accomplished before. This is our “planning brain” (that prefrontal cortex thing you learned about in nursing school). Because we have our planning brain, we were ALL able to do the following:
Graduate nursing school
Pass our board licensure exam
Get a job as a nurse
Think about this — Before you went to nursing school, there was literally no guarantee that you would graduate, right? There was no evidence or proof that you would graduate. The only reason why you graduated was because you truly believed you could. And we know that because you made it happen, no matter what. If you did NOT believe you could, you would not be a nurse.
Now, back to our weight loss. How does this apply to weight loss? You might say, “Look, Charmaine, I am fine when it comes to committing to everything else. I graduated nursing school, I started a family, I have a job… but when it comes to weight loss, I don’t know what’s wrong with me!” (This is something that I hear many nurses tell me.) Well, what was the problem with that question? The nurse’s belief that something is wrong with him/her when it comes to weight loss.
And I want to offer you this: Your belief in yourself (in regards to weight loss, grad school, or whatever crazy goal you have) is always 100% available to you. You just have to consciously access & believe it. Just like you believe you’re going on that vacation to Peru you planned a year ago. But how do you do this?
Here are some ways to begin shifting your mindset from your “dream-killing” thoughts to thoughts that can actually move you forward towards your weight loss goals.
You have to be willing to let go of what you’ve always believed
Just because you’ve believed the same thoughts about yourself for a long time doesn’t mean you have to keep them. What if you could literally un-learn everything you’ve ever believed about yourself? Like, you were able to undergo a medical treatment where your past memories could be erased (enter Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind reference!). Except for you, this would literally be your choice. You can 100% let go of everything you previously believed was true about yourself. But you have to be willing to say goodbye to those thoughts.
Negative thinking is just mind drama
Many times, people think that just because they believe a thought, they have to act out on it. I want to say that this is simply NOT true. Can you imagine if we acted out on the 60,000 thoughts we have EVERY single day? We would literally be so drunk, belligerent, or overweight that we could not possibly function at work! Thoughts are merely sentences in our mind. We have to access our planning brain (the prefrontal cortex) to actually decide which thoughts we want to pick, choose, and get rid of.
Believing in yourself is a skill that takes consistent practice
Every new habit you want to create requires mentally rehearsing a new thought that you’ve never (or hardly ever) thought before. Think of your skills as a new grad nurse — how many weeks, months, or years did it take you to finally feel comfortable and confident in your work flow, skills, and knowledge? I know for me it took me a solid two years as a new nurse to actually refine my skills and have my nurse habits and routine solidified. The same goes for your weight loss: New ways of eating requires new ways of thinking for you. That means that if you want to lose the last 10 pounds, your way of thinking has to be a new thought process (NOT the old thoughts you had before about weight loss being “impossible” or “difficult”).
To assess how you currently think about yourself and your weight loss journey, ask yourself these questions:
Am I willing to give up eating sugar and flour so I can get the weight loss results that I want? Why, or why not?
Am I willing to believe that everything I previously learned about food (in my youth) may not be evidence-based or factual?
Am I willing to let go of negative self-talk or limiting beliefs about myself or my weight loss that are not helpful to me?
Am I willing to begin nourishing my brain with rich, luxurious, and high-end thoughts that can propel me forward and get me to my goal weight?
Am I willing to mentally rehearse these enriching thoughts on a regular basis, if that means getting to my goal weight?
Share your thoughts with me on these questions or on this blog post by commenting below!
TRANSFORM YOUR MIND, WEIGHT, AND LIFE IN 6 WEEKS
Hey! Before you go, did you know? My next group of weight loss coaching just for nurses will begin February 10, 2019! There are still 20 spots open, and I am looking for you (a nurse who is currently working and currently struggling with weight loss)! To see if my 6-Week Weight Loss for Nurses Coaching Program is a good fit for you, schedule your free 1:1 consultation call with me by clicking here! But act quickly — spots are limited!