I had the chance to sit down (or in my case float around a pool) and read a book for the first time in a long time. I decided to break open ‘Girl, Wash your Face’ by Rachel Hollis. Oh my goodness, talk about amazing! I’m feeling all sorts of inspired, ready to take on new challenges and embark even further down this blog journey than ever before. (If you’ve read the book you’ll know what I mean!) I am completely ready to shake the negativity I’ve allowed to come into my life and to learn positive mindhabits to change these common lies we tell ourselves!
I’m only about halfway through this book, and yet the truth of the words I’ve read so far has smacked reality into me. Personally, I’ve had a multitude of different stressors recently that have me feeling burnt out and overwhelmed. This book, however, has me realizing that a lot of my struggles are the result of a negative mindset and ‘lies’ I have allowed myself to take over and believe.
In true Rachel Hollis form, I want to be as honest and raw as possible. Here are 5 lies I have allowed myself to succumb too, and that I know others relate to as well. With inspiration from Girl, Wash your Face, follow along as I tackle these negative mindsets to turn them into the beginning of a self- loving, and motivated journey!
I’m a failure
I know this sounds dramatic, but this is my reality as it is for many others. The reality of feeling as if you can never be 100% good at something is so heartwrenching, it makes my head spin just thinking about the level of negativity and sadness that goes into associating yourself with failure. I am saying this for not only myself but for you as well: You are not a failure.
Remember that there is always going to be someone better than you at something. That might sound like a negative thing but think about it. Everyone has different skills, abilities, traits, etc. that make them who they are! So what you didn’t get that promotion after all your hard work, or you didn’t get accepted to that university you’ve tried for. Perhaps those weren’t the right fit for you, and without even realizing as of yet, your abilities can excel in a completely different environment you never even knew possible. It just takes time to get there!
Your failures and mistakes can lead you exactly where you need to be! It’s okay to fail
This has taken me a long time to accept. Even now I doubt myself, and think about “well what about that one time you failed your program that should’ve been easy”. or “remember that time all your friends graduated and you didn’t?”. This negativity isn’t going to help me, and your negativity isn’t going to help you. Its time to stop letting past failures hinder us from the successes of today!
How to change your mindset
- Read Inspiring Verses: I understand not everyone is a believer, but for myself having my faith is what keeps me going. I am particularly drawn to Jeremiah 29:11 (more on this here)
- Things take time: You are not a failure for not being where you want to be at this exact moment. For example, you’re not going to land your high paying, dream job right out of school (if you did- congrats you’re of the lucky few!) But, for the most part, it takes time and effort to get there. Regardless of the situation, learn in your current state. Life is a journey, not a race!
- Quit holding onto the past: If you’re like me and continually replay all the scenarios of ‘what could’ve been’ or ‘if only’s’, we both know that does nothing. It’s time to move on, take a deep breath and breathe out the negativity- life doesn’t wait for us. Therefore let’s forget about the failures of the past, and learn for the present. Failures are apart of life!
I have the worst Luck
For a long time, I was known out of all my friends to have the one with the worst luck. For a long time I believed it, but do you know why that was my title? because I told them I had bad luck every time I felt something bad happened to me. I was always pessimistic and looking for an excuse- any reason as to why my life was treating me so horribly. I could roll my eyes at myself right now just thinking about how whiny and annoying it all sounds.
Life is not a series of luck- in fact, life just happens and its all on how you handle it that matters. Life is not out to intentionally tease or break us! if you try and hyper-analyze every situation, you are seeking out the bad every time- making you feel as if the world is against you and that you have the worst luck ever (cue the tiny violin).
This is just a lie our minds can begin to believe, and therefore when bad stuff happens we play the victim role!
How to change your mindset
- Start a Gratitude Journal: If you love stationary like me this is an excuse to buy a journal, but you can use your phone note pad app too. Write down 5 things you’re thankful for every day- this can help to retrain your mind to look for the positive as opposed to the negative.
- Be realistic: Was that slow driver in front of you really there on purpose to ruin your day? Sometimes our dramatics and negativity can have us thinking irrationally. Take a deep breath and recenter yourself when you’re getting cranky or worked up. Perhaps that slow driver was a teenager learning how to drive for the first time! The world is not against us, it’s all about our perspective on the world itself.
I know that not everyone will relate to this lie, but as someone with anxiety/depression, this one gets to me a lot. On my days off, I need my time to be spent alone and doing nothing. This might sound like a complete nightmare for workaholics and outgoing people, but trust me it’s my kind of day. When I do decide to have a lounge day, I spend the majority of my time feeling guilty that I’m not doing more.
We know our bodies and selves better than anyone, and In this instance, I know deep down that I need this relax time to recharge before I go back to work. Yet, I still feel compelled to do more because most people my age go out and do things on their time off!
I’ll tell myself on my days off that I’m being lazy and to go do something, just anything to say that I was productive in case anyone asked. I shouldn’t have to feel guilty for doing what I know is best for me and my self-care. Again, it’s a negative lie I’ve told myself as a way to “motivate” myself. SO Wrong!
How to change your mindset
- Stop comparing yourself to others: This goes without saying and everyone knows it, yet the majority of people (if not, everyone) still do it constantly. The way that you do things; not only in regard to self-care but with anything, should not matter to anyone or be based on what others will think of you. You do you girl!
- Let yourself be comfortable & Happy: If you’re having a lounge day at an appropriate time such as a day off, why not enjoy it! We’re allowed to relax and spend time for ourselves how we see best. Quit letting yourself feel guilty, and just enjoy the day. In fact, while you’re at it, make yourself a hot chocolate and food and just go all out!
I Don’t Feel Attractive
I’m pretty sure almost 90% of people reading this can understand where I’m coming from here. Growing up I never felt my appearance was a huge deal Yet I still wouldn’t say I love how I look.
I’ll even have moments when I’m with my boyfriend- who is the most supportive Man who loves me for me, and yet I’ll sometimes try to conceal my insecurities to him. If he’s smiling at me I’ll catch myself only smiling with my mouth closed because I hate my crooked teeth, or if he puts his hands on my hips I’ll instinctively pull them off because the last thing I need is him touching my stomach… it’s all pretty ridiculous if you ask me.
Why do we feel like this? Sure, I’ve been called ugly many times in my past, or have been rated low on the “attractive” scale but scored high in the “personality” category (yay for immature boys) but I never felt that was the root cause of my insecurities. When I really take a moment to think deep down, my biggest root cause is in regards to the comparison. My friend has straight teeth and I don’t, I don’t have a flat stomach like that girl on Instagram, I don’t have that body shape. All negative self-talk and for what? what benefit do we get out of doing this? Absolutely nothing!
I like to think of that commercial of the little girl looking at herself in the mirror saying “I love my hair, I love my house…” I want to be just like her! I’m all for women encouraging other women, but we need to be able to encourage our own selves too!
How to change your mindset
- Stop Comparing: I know I’ve used this one before, but I’m going to say it again. STOP. COMPARING (I’m not yelling, just emphasizing!). All of us are beautiful, unique, and different in our own way. Embrace our differences!
- Say 5 things you love about yourself: 5 really is the magic number, because a little bit every day adds up to a lot of positivity! You can do this in the same journal for your gratitude/ your note pad app. Include your personality or qualities in there too- we are more than just our appearance!
- Accept Compliments: we don’t need validation from anyone- BUT, when family, friends, or even a stranger compliment you accept it! Take what they say seriously. They wouldn’t have said it if they didn’t believe it was true. If you need too, you can write them down in your journal as a reminder of the qualities other people see in you!
- Follow Body Positivity Pages: I follow a lot of body positive influencers, and seeing them being confident in who they are- and being honest when they are feeling insecure, makes you able to relate and help you to overcome your own fears! Some of my favourites are Sierra Schultzzie and Carrie Dayton.
- If you are dying for change, change to become healthy & for you, not anyone else: If there’s one thing I disagree with, it’s unhealthy quick-fix diets and losing weight to “look skinnier”. There’s nothing wrong with eating healthier & working out. I encourage it! But, don’t do it for the wrong reasons such as impressing someone or trying to look like someone else. Everybody is different- even if you lose a lot of weight, you are not going to look exactly like that girl on Instagram. Take care of your body, for you and your health. NOT for anything else!
I am incapable of achieving my goals
This is one of my biggest lies I tell myself. It is the seed that plants itself within my mind and grows and festers into a thorn bush that I no longer have control of. Truth is, I am most certainly capable of achieving my goals- everyone can! Yet, when a roadblock gets in the way our resilience can be tested. As a millennial, I feel we’ve lost a lot of our resilience.
Deep down we all know that we have a fire that can easily be reignited if only we had a spark to help light it. Doubt, worry, embarrassment, fear, judgment; All words that come to mind of why we don’t dive head first into things that we might want too. We are so much more capable of achievement than we know!
Don’t hold yourself back from an opportunity or chance to reach your goal, due to the dreaded ‘F’ word (It’s FEAR by the way). What would you do, or what would you achieve if you didn’t have a care or fear in the world? I understand that there is an element of reality that we do have to be aware of- whether that’s an illness of some kind, financially, etc. Do keep those in mind, but there are so many resources and help out there that you can and will achieve your goals in due time!
How to change your mindset
- Strengths & Weaknesses: As an example, let’s say your goal is to advance further up the ladder position wise. Think about your positive attributes and qualities that would make you a great fit for this role, as well as areas you can work on. Ask your current manager for a meeting to discuss a review of your work. Ask how you can improve, and what your strengths are. Hearing it from a Manager standpoint can be great feedback to help you achieve your goals realistically!
- Self Reflect: Not only should you get feedback from someone else, but also reflect on you. You have the goals you want to achieve- how are you taking the necessary steps to achieve them? What is your plan moving forward? What are you doing to hinder yourself from reaching them? Lay it all out and be honest with yourself.
- Plan: I can’t stress this enough- plan ahead! As an example, let’s say your goal is to get a job. Dedicate a day to working on your resume and cover letter, another day to handing them out, and another day to getting together all of the necessary qualifications and appropriate paperwork required for the job. Staying organized keeps you ahead of the game!
- Focus on why you can as opposed to why you can’t: I’ve wanted to start a blog since I was 14. I tried multiple times, yet deleted them out of fear of judgment. This blog started due to deciding to just say “screw it” and to do something for me for once! I set aside my fears and focused on how I could make this work, and why I could do it! Have some faith in yourself and go for it girl!
- You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. (Quote from the genius Winnie The Pooh)
You made it to the end, Girl!
Our negative mindset hinders us from so much. We can achieve so much more than we believe, and Life can have us thriving in an area we never even thought possible- that’s the joys of the journey! Achieving goals and dreams take time. Don’t give up, and continue to push yourself to think positively and being mindful of how you talk to yourself. If you made it this far, leave a comment below to how you encourage yourself & if you want to start this journey of becoming more positive & inspired- you can do it!