Parent's and Childhood Carry Over
Do you often wonder why you do something consistently even though in your head you admonish or scold yourself for doing it? You know that thing.
“I began to realize that childhood love, emulation and loyalty to one’s parents is a complex, mysterious, wonderful thing that can move forward in time until aspects of it are no longer appropriate.” ~ Ariel Kane
Do you often wonder why you do something consistently even though in your head you admonish or scold yourself for doing it? You know that thing, or those things that you look back to your parents in some cases and thank them for giving you.
Maybe you don’t exercise regularly even though you tell yourself you want to, or you will someday and when looking for reasons why you can look back and say, “well my mother never did” so I didn’t have an example to follow. Maybe you eat for comfort and sometimes you feel like you can’t help yourself. You know you ought to cut that out, but you can see pictures in your head of you Dad stress eating after work, that’s who we saved the “good” snacks for, your mother would say “don’t eat that it’s for your father”. Maybe your home is cluttered and a mess and you tell yourself this is just who I am, I have always been this way. When you think about it you can’t remember a time when you were not messy and cluttered. It is time to realize this is an old pattern, old story, and the things we continuously tell ourselves we have no control over. No truth here, we are the only ones with control. Honestly, we are the only ones who have control over how we are, and what we chose to do, think, and say.
The first step is to discover, discover your sticking points. What is the area, like the examples above, that I think I don’t have control over?
Is there more than one?
What in my life do I always complain to myself about?
Can you hear the voice in your head?
What is it reminding you, that you want to do?
Once you know what that area is you can begin to move forward on changing those patterns.
The second step is to recognize, recognize the old patterns and the triggers, and excuses that go along with them. Once you find the area, you can begin to watch and listen for the patterns, for example: Every time I get handed a new project at work I… Whenever my sister comes to visit I… Every night I review my day and wish I had… If only I would get up earlier I could… Now watch closely recognition of these items alone can bring on change. Things just might start to change around this area and that will be great. We are, however, looking for long lasting change and as human beings we tend to pick our problem right back up after we seemingly let them go. Watch for that as well.
The third step is to explore, explore ways to change the self-talk. When I hear the voice that tells me I am lazy, unmotivated, and not serious enough, I say to that voice, “Thank you very much for trying to help, but I will not be taking your advice today. I am taking this a new direction today.” Or something similar to that. You may want to keep a notebook to track how often and what might be going on in your head, that little voice. Also, a note would be handy for keep alternative thoughts to replace the old ones, pull it out when that self-talk begins to cascade down and replace them with the good ones you have recorded there. Exploration can lead to many things, keeping up with yourself now as you begin the flow of change will be a challenge. (She says with a smile and a wink)
Step four is focus, focus on what does serve you well. As you work on this area do not lose sight of what already works very well for you. This is not to be a session of only focusing on what needs to change. Many areas in your life flow nicely, what are those? Give yourself credit for the areas where you excel and exceed even your own expectations, which can be the toughest of all. Keep your focus on all that is great about you.
Step five is the last step in this article, but it is not the final step. I will explain this at the end. Step five is create, create a plan for success. A set of structures that help you to be more successful in your area of change. If your area is regular exercise and you want to do that in the morning, make sure your alarm is set and give yourself plenty of time. Set your clothes for your workout, out the night before so they are easy to find in the grogginess of morning. If your area is to deconstruct your clutter, then put into place an organizer for the items that need dealing with on a daily basis. Give yourself a reminder to be present for the item at hand and do not set it down until you are putting it where it belongs. Maybe a sign above your mailbox that reminds you to read and shred, or file. You will have to find what works for you.
Once you feel like you have converted your old pattern, changed your old outcome, then it is time to start the process once again. For we all have more than one area in our lives we could be making strides towards bettering.
Many people can do much on their own, but when you find that any of these steps have you stuck, find a coach. Coaches can help move you forward by holding you accountable for the goals you set. They can help by asking you questions that allow you to dig deeper and change the self-talk. Most of all they can support you and cheer you on as your reach that goal and set another.