Our weekly Team NLP blog where you’ll find inspiration and actionable advice on how to build healthy habits, resilience and connections in our unprecedented times.
How are you getting on? This week I want to focus on what keeps people living in fear which I believe is very relevant now as we move our lives towards a new reality. For many people life goes on pretty much the same and for others there are new choices to be made – how do I find a new job or career, how do I keep my business afloat, how do I stay motivated when everything around me is changing, how do I keep my relationship going which has been difficult to maintain during lockdown? As humans, it’s the emotion of fear keeps most often keeps us stuck. We are scared of moving into the unknown, of doing something different. What we are not so good at is determining the real from the imagined. Fear comes from limiting beliefs that we have about ourselves and our abilities, and of course, our situation. However, what we forget to separate out what is FACT or EVIDENCE and what we MAKE UP in our heads. So, what happens is that we often build up the consequences of us making a change to mean something far worse than the actual reality of the situation.
Here’s a great acronym for fear:
Our minds are brilliant at creating the worst case scenario in our heads, and then that’s what we begin to focus on as our reality. Soon we forget that it’s not real. We make huge assumptions about what may or may not be true based upon the story we have created in our heads.
It takes one of two things to move people out of their comfort zone. Either you have a goal that is so compelling you will take the risk of going for it. Or, in contrast, the pain becomes so great that you are finally tipped over the edge to do something differently.
Which one influences us often depends upon the way we are motivated. In NLP we talk about people being ‘towards’ or ‘away from’ motivated. Think about it. Do you move away from what you don’t want or move towards what you do want? Are you a ‘stick’ or a ‘carrot’ person? For example, if you want to lose weight, do you move towards a goal of being fit and healthy and have a motivational image in your mind of you in that skimpy new outfit, or do you move away from being fat and focus on an image of you overweight and bulging out of that special outfit?
One of the limitations of ‘away from’ motivation is that it often dwindles once short-term improvements are gained. For example, a person will start off well, take action and before too long are moving in the right direction. As they begin to notice improvements in their life, they become comfortable again. As if by magic, their motivation vaporises and their action dwindles to nothing. This is the reason why so many diets do not work, because as soon as your target weight is reached you feel comfortable again and are tempted to slip back into old habits. The alternative is to move towards a healthy lifestyle where taking exercise becomes part of a way of life.
Ask yourself the following question and make a note of your answers:
‘’What do I want in my life?’’
Notice how many of your answers start with what you don’t want as opposed to what you do want. If the majority of your answers focus on what you don’t want you are more ‘away from’ motivated. For example, ‘I don’t want to be poor’ is an example of an away from motivated goal.’ If your answers focus more on what you do want you are more ‘towards’ motivated. For example, ‘’I want to be fit and healthy’’ or I want abundance in my life’ are examples of a towards motivated goal.’
The good news is that you always have other choices even if it doesn’t seem that way right now. If you don’t believe you have other choices at the moment, I want you to humour me and pretend that it’s true. What difference would that make to you? What action would you take?
To your success…
Lindsey and Team NLP
If you would like to know how NLP can help you to emerge from lockdown with renewed clarity and energy sign up to our next free webinar ‘Change Your Life with NLP’ on the 26th August at 7pm.
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