Put on the red bandana
I'm a big fan of metaphors.
Especially when there's a touch of woo in it, :)
One of the most important elements in our emotional tool belts, especially for entrepreneurs who tossed stability out the window, is resilience.
Being able to shake off negative emotions in order to narrow and focus our attention is absolutely key in order to move us along our path to achieve and exceed the goals we set for ourselves.
And then, sometimes, these heightened emotions that cause us stress, fear, jealousy or anger overtake us, and our ability to stop the negative, mind chatter wheel from encompassing our attention is out of our hands for a time.
Listen, it happens - we’re all human and we need to give ourselves permission to have these moments from time to time without judgement or punishment.
The key is to acknowledge when those moments elevate from a mild disruption of your day to a major distraction that’s completely taking you out of your normal routines.
And recently, I began to notice the negative mind chatter ramping up inside my head.
Specifically, I felt my attention constantly falling into a thinking trap where I was heavily comparing myself to others, and it was creating major distractions and mood swings throughout my day.
The worst part is that I was completely aware of what I was allowing, and, even though I am completely capable of self-talking my way out of these negative thought loops, I still allowed this thinking trap to get out of control and wreak havoc on my mindset and emotional well-being.
That’s when I decided to ask for help.
I reached out to my friend, and positive psychology instructor, Sid, to get clarity on this challenge through a structured, coaching call.
When asked what my goal was for this session, I told him that I wanted to create a structure or way of thinking that will be my default response anytime I compare myself to someone and feel the urge to slip into a negative thought loop afterwards.
In other words, I want to stop negatively comparing myself to someone else’s success by being more resilient.
When Sid asked me what that looks like, I took a moment to think about it, and, it harkened me back to the time during the positive psychology class where we first talked about resiliency.
It was during a distance learning class, and, Sid requested we throw all kinds of negative sentiments at him and he would counter with a positive spin on the thought.
But, before we started that rapid-fire exercise, he had to prepare himself by tying that bandana to his head.
Sid loves his props, what can I tell you, :)
The funny thing is that that prop that I initially thought looked silly and ridiculous actually is now something that I am hanging my hat on after our conversation.
While we were diving deep in the weeds, I mentioned to him that I sought to build more resiliency in my life, especially with respect to falling into the trap of comparing myself to other people.
He simply asked me what that looked like, and, all I kept envisioning was him tying that red bandana on his head!
There’s the structure/new way of thinking that I asked for at the beginning of the call!
From this moment on, anytime I start feeling anxious around comparing myself to others - or any other emotion that knocks me out of the present moment negatively, for that matter - I will immediately “put on the red bandana” and leverage my resiliency to self-talk myself away from this thinking trap and simply move on with my day.
I felt so recharged afterwards, that I immediately tested it while scrolling through my Facebook feed. I kept the “red bandana” front and center in my mind, and the next thing you know, I felt totally fine, :)
If you had offered me this type of solution a couple years ago, I would told you to get the hell away from me with your woo-woo bullshit - oh, silly me, :)
Fortunately, when you surround yourself with people who inspire you to show up in the world the way you want, this limited thinking starts to evaporate from your conscience and that leaves room for exponential growth.
You just have to remember to put on the red bandana, and everything will work out just fine, :)
PS - For those of you who aren’t in the know, I mail out these blogs 3x a week, and lemme tell you, they’re a real party, so, if you’d like to get in on this, sign up for it here and I’ll throw in a free gift for you, because I care, :)