Episode 87: Reframing
We sometimes have this all-or-nothing mentality when it comes to our beliefs. We think that we have to either believe it or drop it and it’s no wonder why we think that when we’re bombarded with messages like, “just let it go…”, “don’t believe that!” And that’s even IF we realize what we’re thinking in the first place!
So my friends, today I want to help you out and offer you a better way or as I like to say, “a more productive way” to reframe your thoughts to work for you instead of against you.
There are some thoughts that are just so common that we hear on TV, from our friends, family, and all the time out of our own mouth, or heads and these just aren’t serving you and not just that but they feel awful! It might not sting so much in the moment but I tell you what, they add up and create a feeling that just doesn’t help you to be who you want to be or to feel how you want to feel or even do what you want to do.
How many times have you stopped yourself from moving forward because you got caught up in a whirlwind of negative self-talk and then you felt discouraged and unmotivated and instead decided that social media and sugar was a better activity instead of doing what you originally wanted to?
These beliefs – that seem like harmless, automatic thoughts are hurting you in more ways than just one. So I want to spotlight 5 common beliefs that hurt more than help AND a suggestion to reframe the belief so you can keep moving forward towards progression instead of stopping and diving into sugar.
1.) I look so (insert something negative here) – listen, we are all so wrapped up in focusing on our appearance and how we look to others that don’t even stop to wonder why we’re doing that, thinking that in the first place. And I tell you what – your confidence and security takes a deep dive when you indulge in this line of thinking.
I know you know what I’m talking about here because we’ve all had this experience. You could be getting dressed in the morning and glancing in the mirror and think, “whoa, I’m so fat” or sending a Marco Polo or Facetiming someone and when you see your reflection you think, “whoa, I’m so ugly”, “My hair is a mess”, “I don’t like my teeth (my smile, my face in general)”.
And when we do this we’ve stepped out of the present moment and being in the moment and we instead take on an outside perspective looking at yourself in an objectifying manner.
This makes us wonder and worry what others think of us and because we can’t know what others think of us we feel very insecure and our primitive brain dive into some woeful tale of how you don’t look how you “should” look and it feels awful.
It’s important to just pause and be aware of what’s happening and the subtle shift you just took from being to objectifying.
Now when this happens you don’t need to do a huge thought work deep dive but you might want to do a quick reframe that allows you to be back IN the moment and not outside look at yourself through the moment.
I love thinking and reframing those thoughts to this:
I look human today.
Remember, why are we objectifying ourselves to be an object to be looked at instead of a human to exist? You can ask yourself, what value do I bring into the world that isn’t physical? Or I am more than my appearance.
Notice how that simple reframe already feels. It puts you right back into BEING instead of existing to be looked at either by yourself or others. You are more than your appearance. You look like a human period.
2.) Thought number two to reframe is, “they’re going to think (insert something negative) about me”
They’re going to think I’m a bad mom.
They’re going to think I’m not good enough.
They’re going to think I don’t know what I’m doing.
They’re going to think I’m not smart.
They’re going to think I’m not funny or fun.
We spend a lot of time thinking about what other people are thinking about us. How many times have you stopped doing something because you were worried about what they might think of you? How many times have you given into people-pleasing – aka doing something you don’t really want to do just because you’re afraid of what they might think of you if you say no?
Listen, that’s a no-win rabbit hole you don’t want to go down. The truth is, we can’t know what they’re thinking. But the good news is you don’t need to know. Honestly, not even exaggerating.
You don’t need to know what they’re thinking because what they’re thinking cannot affect you. Really and truly.
Byron Katie says that “staying in your own business is a full-time job” When you’re focused and thinking about what other people are thinking of you you’re leaving your own mind unattended.
It doesn’t matter what they think because what they think is about them and not about you. It’s never about you. So let’s reframe that thought to go from worry to security!
Instead of, “They’re going to think…xyz” change it to: “What do I think about me?”
This is a game-changer because when I’m aware of what I’m thinking and why I’m sharing or showing up the way that I am, I don’t need other people to understand or approve of me. I already give that to myself. This is a powerful reframe because it puts you back in your own mind and in your own intentions instead of floundering wondering what brain synapses other people are having.
Just notice what YOU think instead of assuming to know what THEY think.
3.) Thought number 3: I should make everyone happy.
That comes in a variety of ways because it’s not so audible but it’s very apparent nonetheless.
When our kids are upset we take on the job of trying to “make” them feel better. When our friends are having a down day or are crabby we assume the role of “magic feel-good fairy”.
When you’re hosting an event no matter how big or small and you see someone unhappy you automatically take on the job to try and make them happy.
It’s exhausting and most of the time it has you showing up inauthentically.
Notice, have you ever had a get-together and you find yourself talking to people that just aren’t super happy and you’d really rather be with your other friends, your family, your spouse, anyone else but you feel like it’s your job to make everyone happy so you stay and listen and participate in that downer conversation because a part of you believes that you should make everyone happy?
It’s so sneaky because it sounds nice. Like you’re being a good person and while there’s some truth to that it’s not helpful and it’s not honest. eek.
Here’s the truth and the reframe: Everyone is responsible for their own feelings. You cannot make anyone feel anything. I can invite and influence but ultimately it is not my job nor is it my own responsibility to make others happy. That is their own job. You know what IS your job though? Your feelings. Are you happy? Do you want to be happy?
So, be you. Share kind, uplifting words if that’s what you want in that moment but then let them be responsible for their own feelings.
I know this is hard for so many of you. We don’t like seeing others that aren’t happy because of what we make it mean about ourselves. We make it mean that we can’t be happy or that we shouldn’t be happy if they’re unhappy or that we should make others happy. Not true. All of it. Untrue and not helpful.
You get to choose what you want to feel and so do they – no matter how old they are.
I remember years ago my youngest wanted so badly to be invited to his older brother’s birthday and up until that point he always was but this was a transitional birthday between being a kid and becoming an older teen. So we planned this like I think it was a laser tag birthday and my youngest wasn’t even old enough ever if we wanted him to attend.
So he was really upset about that. I remember taking the whole crew to Target to buy treats and snacks for it and my youngest must have been about 6 years old at the time maybe? And he was dead set on being unhappy and all my kids tried their hardest to “make” him feel better and it was really tough on all of them because it was to no avail. He was set on being unhappy and he just parked it on an end cap and just pouted.
So I walked over to him and looked him the eyes and told him that we love him a lot and that if he wanted to he could choose to feel however he wanted to feel but he didn’t have to be upset if it didn’t feel good to him. I told him that he could choose and if he wanted to choose to be upset he could. That was okay. Sometimes I choose to be upset too and then I set some parameters about what appropriate behavior is – like, you can’t chill on the Target end cap all day. It’s not safe and we’re on the move – so choose to be unhappy if you want but you gotta keep moving.
And he chose to be upset a bit longer and we all gave him space to do so and then on his own he was done and it was all okay. You are not responsible for other people’s emotions – especially adults.
Be yourself. Invite, influence, offer assistance, and help but do not take on the job, role, and responsibility of believing that you are supposed to make others happy. You can’t.
The reframe again is this: Everyone is responsible for their own feelings. I can invite and influence but ultimately it is not my job nor is it my own responsibility to make others happy. That is their own job. And I can focus on what IS my job: Am I happy? Do I want to be happy?
Okay Thought number 4: I’m so stupid! Or That was so silly of me
We all do things we think we shouldn’t. And we get results sometimes that we’d rather not have gotten but the things that we say to ourselves really matter and they make a huge impact on our confidence and how we show up in the world.
Stupid, silly, ridiculous – they’re all subjective and ask yourself, is it helpful – is it helping me to feel and show up how I want to when I tell myself that I did something stupid or that I’m stupid?
Can you imagine if someone else said that to you often or as often as you say it to yourself? Ouch – you might not want to be around that person.
There are no stupid things. There are just things. It’s just information. It’s just what I call, math. That happened.
So reframe and this is so compassionate and helpful – it will for sure keep you moving forward and feeling more confident in yourself. Change the, “that was so stupid of me” to, “That was so human of me.”
Notice, no judgments, no criticism, no harshness – just human, just math – that happened, and now what?
It doesn’t have to be a problem unless you make it one and is that really what you want to do?
Remember, what you think creates how you feel and just notice how it feels even when you say it to yourself kind of a reaction – it will never produce a productive or positive thought. You will always have a moment of shame or discouragement and neither of those will have you showing up how you really want to be.
So reframe: that was so human of me. I’m so good at being a human sometimes. It’s not judging – it’s factual and it’s pretty neutral so you can keep moving forward and keep progressing and just, keep it math. That happened, now what?
5.) Okay, last reframe for today – there’s so many more of course but to keep this podcast succinct we’ll narrow to just 5:
Thought: I could never do that.
And this is another thought that has variations to it – like I could never look like that, I could never have that, be that, create that.
And that thought creates scarcity and lack and not just lack but lack in yourself which is the opposite of confidence. It stirs up feelings of insecurity and doubt in yourself. Notice how often you say or think some kind of variation to that thought and then notice how it feels.
It doesn’t feel good and it won’t ever create the results you really want because what you’re saying is that you can’t have/do/be something you kind of sort of really want to. Lack, fear, scarcity, insecurity – none of which are driving emotions that create anything productive.
***(podcast snippet) The reframe here is to then insert what is really true and that’s, “It’s possible that I could do/be/have that”
Notice, it’s not believing something you don’t believe yet but it’s just offering some room for curiosity and pondering.
What if it IS possible you could do that be that have that?
Why not explore that instead of limiting yourself to something you think you can’t? You’re only limited by what you believe you’re limited by.
That limitation doesn’t have to be true for you if you don’t want to believe it. There is so much power in belief and being open to the possibility that it could be true for you.
Plus if feels SO MUCH BETTER.
Okay my friends, Thank you for being here and listening! I just am so grateful for all of you! And don’t forget to come join the membership! The doors are open for a very limited time and this coming month will blow your mind so come join us and I’ll talk to you all next week!