This is Part 2 in a 3 part series. If you missed Part 1 go read it, then come back. I won't go anywhere without you!
You're still alive! I didn't have to put you on sui-watch after Part 1! I have fun stories about putting people on sui-watch.
Self-doubt is a pesky thing I'd like to take a pick ax to. You feel the same way? Well, read on my friend, read on!
Put Yourself Back in Control
Remember that list of negative thoughts? Pull them back out! We're going to do a little exercise.
Stop your whining folks.
Take your paper filled with negativity and then look at the first one. You're going to replace that thought with a correct one. You can take as much time and as many sentences as you need to dispute and dispel your snippet of self-doubt.
Here's one of mine:
No one will care what you have to say.
Umm, that's not true. My mom cares. Oh! So do my husband and children. I have friends that go out of their way to support me and listen to what I have to say. I have important things to share; I can be useful and helpful to others.
It's your turn now. You may have too many to do it all in one sitting. You will see that many of them overlap and won't require you to do the exercise for each and every single thought.
[Tweet "Replace negative thoughts with the truth."]
[Tweet "Devour your fear. ~ Simon Holt."]
When we start throwing our emotions around and don't identify and separate our thoughts from our feelings we lose control of ourselves. An I Feel statement is a great tool to put you back in control.
What is an I Feel statement? I'll show you the outline of it and then give an example.
I feel _____ because I think that I _____. My hope for myself is _____. My hope for you is _____.
Your feelings flow from your thoughts. They are not the same thing. I don't feel like I'm unsuccessful. I don't feel that you're a jerk. (you're not, by the way). I cannot feel a thought. You feel a feeling. Ya dig? So keep the I feel a feeling.
Also, keep it about yourself, not others. You don't feel something because of what others do to you. You feel something because of your own thought. We have to be accountable for our own thoughts and feelings. Hence the because I think that I part.
Sorry folks. I'll give an example based on my above self-doubt and you'll see what I mean.
I feel discouraged because I think that I am not comfortable putting myself out there. My hope for myself is that I will push myself to make sincere connections. My hope for you is that you will recognize my efforts to be sincere.
Your knee-jerk reaction may be to say something full of self-pity. Or a thought that may be out of your control. For instance, I could have said because I think that I am unpopular. or because I think that I am unsuccessful. or because I think that no one likes me. The first two are out of your control and full of self-pity. The latter, isn't even about me: it didn't even start with I.
The I Feel statement and its rules empower me. No one else can dictate how I feel. I do that. It helps me to be a better communicator to my friends and family. I take better accountability for my actions and in-actions.
[Tweet "Mastering others is strength. Mastering oneself makes you fearless. ~ Lao Tzu."]
Your turn! Take the self-doubt that is the biggest stumbling block for you. Now put that into an I Feel statement. What is the feeling that you associate with it? What is the thought associated with that feeling? It helps you break it down into your mind of what it really is and where it's really coming from. It's not from my brother and all his accomplishments. It's from me. It's not from that amazing best-selling author that I compare myself to. It's from me. Whatever it is you're fearing and doubting is from you.
[Tweet "Your fear is 100% dependent on you for its survival. ~ Steve Maraboli."]
In your I Feel statement, in the "my wish for myself" section, you are guided to what needs to be done next. Now is the time for attainable steps.
In my first example sentence I said that I will push myself to make sincere connections. How? It is an ambiguous statement. It's not concrete and it's not measurable. It's a hope: not a goal and not an action.
Photo courtesy of Michaela Kobyakov.
How am I going to push myself to make sincere connections?
- I will be involved with my friends in various ways -- phone calls, play dates, girls night out, game night, emails, connect on FB
- I will be involved on my Facebook fan page in various ways -- polls, conversations, recommendations, contests
- I will engage in conversations on Twitter.
- I will follow new people with similar interests on Twitter -- real people, not the ones that are solely pushing products.
- I will get involved on the blogs that are meaningful to me. -- commenting, replying to others' comments, guest posting, encourage
- I will be involved in forums and groups and be fully supportive to others.
These are all steps I will take to foster real relationships. They will ensure that my purpose and my passion remain authentic and true. I want people to perceive me as I am - genuinely interested in their success and happiness. When I do this with concentrated effort I know I will be successful in accomplishing my goals.
My only remaining step is to make these measurable. I will do such and such 3x a week, etc. Then I set a date to evaluate my progress.
What am I supposed to do again?
- Disprove your negative thoughts - replace them with truths.
- Write down your I Feel statement.
- Take action. List goals and steps to make your hope from #2 happen.
[Tweet "Disprove, I Feel, Take Action."]
Was it hard for you to work through your I Feel statement? What are some steps you are taking towards your new goals? Share your I Feel statement with me! I'd be happy to help you if you're stuck.
Stay tuned for Part 3! [Part 3 is now here!]