Have you heard that saying, “Motivation will get you started, dedication will keep you going”? It’s about being dedicated to your cause, rather than just being motivated to do something at one point in time. Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m a motivation supporter…I do a daily post (check it out here) and am constantly being told I’m a “Positive Polly” (a fact I’m more than happy to own). However, simply saying motivational quotes or affirmations without the belief to back them up is never going to help you achieve results. To achieve results, we need evidence.
Is it actually true?
I was working with a group recently where we discussed the topic of mindset and self-talk. We often get asked if motivational quotes and affirmations are the best way to get and stay motivated. The thing is, quotes and affirmations can be very motivational and encouraging, but they will only work if there is evidence to support the thought. For example, standing in front of the mirror every morning repeating, “I am awesome!” ten times will only work if you have the belief and proof that you are. If you believe you are everything but awesome, telling yourself to be awesome probably won’t work.
One participant of the discussion offered their thoughts at this point. He explained, “Every morning, in the shower, I talk to myself. I talk myself into the day. I tell myself what is good about what I do, what I’m good at, what my strengths are and how I can improve.” At this point, he looked around at the room full of people focused on him and went a little red. He continued, “It’s probably a bit wrong, I should probably stop doing it.” And then lowered his head to stare at the ground.
At this point I jumped in and said, “NO WAY!” What he had effectively done, unknowingly, was create new wiring to form a more positive mindset using a bank of evidence with proof he could, in fact, win the day. He wasn’t just telling himself how good he was, he was actively looking and recognising the evidence to prove he was good.
What’s in your bank of evidence?
So what was in his evidence that helped him win the day? Notice the language he used when explaining what he talked to himself about:
- “What is good about what I do” – who do you serve? what do you provide them?
- “What I’m good at” – what do you do well? what are the things you do that make a difference?
- “What my strengths are” – no matter how small or insignificant you think they may be, what are the strengths of your abilities?
Rather than telling himself “I am awesome!”, he lists all the actual things he knows to be true – I am fit, healthy, strong, resilient, open-minded, intelligent, creative, positive, helpful, supportive, funny, playful, adventurous…the list could go on forever! Once you’ve mastered a general list, start to really focus on specifics – the actual tasks you do, the activity you complete, the actions you take, the behaviours you have – the more specific you can get, the stronger the wiring you will create with your bank of evidence.
If you’re struggling to identify your strengths and positive points, ask a friend or family member to list out how they would describe you. We are all our worst critics, and remember our brain is wired for defence so it will always want to identify the negatives naturally. Ask yourself, how would someone else describe me? I am sure there are a long list of positive examples of things you do really well that could kick start your bank of evidence and help wire your brain for the positive.
Want to learn more about building your bank of evidence and creating positive wiring? Get in touch with us for a complimentary chat.
If you’d like to find out more, join the conversation in our next open workshop.