In last week’s blog I shared a couple of tips on how to stay in control of your own thoughts in order to empower yourself to be motivated. Today I’m moving on to some strategies that you can use and tweak to suit you.
The first one is called the Rubbish Bin. This one was originally devised by a fabulous woman that I worked with a number of years ago. For the purposes of this blog, we’ll call her Amanda. Amanda is a talented, intelligent and in many ways a confident entrepreneur, yet she struggled with self doubt and a cluttered mind when entering certain types of meetings and situations. These included business meetings and pitch opportunities – in many ways the lifeline of her business so one she had to tackle not just to feel better (which is nothing ‘just’ about it really!) but also to ensure her future business success.
Amanda developed a strategy whereby she, in her mind’s eye, scrunched up her negative thoughts and literally visualised herself chucking them in the rubbish bin before entering meetings. This way she allowed herself to clear her mind of the clutter, and become more focused, confident and not least, able to hear and follow what everyone else where saying in the room. Pretty vital to give the best responses potential clients are looking for!
Now, Amanda is very visual, which enabled her to really powerfully apply this strategy. Others I’ve worked with haven’t found a visually driven strategy works for them, so we’ve worked out more effective alternatives. An example here is John who is auditory in his preferred modality. He developed the Happy Song strategy through identifying a song from his youth that reminds him of happy times and instils a sense of joy and calm in him. By recording it to his iPhone, he’s now able to put it on whenever he starts to notice his self talk going towards the way of worry and self doubt. Sometimes when it’d be rude or inappropriate to put earphones in, he simply hums it in his mind and it allows him to centre himself and reject the negative.
A third option, which may apply to you, is the kinaesthetic modality. This is when you perceive the world more through touching and feeling than by seeing or hearing. This applied to my client Helen, and when she had a lovely holiday to Cornwall last summer she brought home a pebble. She developed the Calming Anchor strategy using the pebble. It now comes with her in her pocket when she’s doing something important or daunting. The other week she was going for an interview and told me how she simply held the pebble in her pocket whilst waiting to be called in which allowed her to remain calm and positive.
Now, these three examples are ones that worked wonders for Amanda, John and Helen. If you’d benefit from a positive mind strategy like these, you need to develop one that works for you and ones you do, it’ll help you stay centred, in control and calm. You can do it!