Advertising
Advertising

10 Lies You Tell Yourself That Stop You From Making Life Changes

10 Lies You Tell Yourself That Stop You From Making Life Changes

You know those times in life when you really want to make a big change, but you just can’t seem to stick to it? You want to lose weight, but each time you think about exercising, you get distracted. You need to start studying, but you keep raiding the fridge instead. You can’t wait to go on your next holiday, but you keep spending your money on shoes, so there’s never enough to get your plane ticket.

What is the evil little monster stopping you from reaching your goals? Well, you are. That is, the repetitive thoughts you’ve allowed to cross your mind over and over, have now taken control of every new scenario. These persistent and dangerous thoughts don’t want to be ignored, left out in the cold, or even banished. They keep coming back! Being trapped in the comfort zone of repetitive thoughts is a fast track to never reaching another goal again.

Here are 10 common lies your mind might be telling you. Learn to recognize them so you can weed them out and plant new thoughts, and make wonderful life changes.

Advertising

1. It’s Too Hard

This is probably the most common and most annoying lie we tell ourselves. It prevents us from even trying to conquer a goal. ‘It’s too hard’ simply means we don’t have any faith in ourselves to at least give it a go. At the end of the day, what’s the point of that? Even if you fail, when you give something a go you increase your confidence in actually giving things a go. And you’ll do it again.

2. I Don’t Have The Skills/Time/Money/Talent

When we want to make a change, we start looking around at our options, and the other people who’ve already succeeded at it. The problem is, our minds tend to jump on all the reasons why they’ve succeeded, just to tell us why we can’t do the same. We all have different skills and talents that work in different ways to help us succeed in life changes, so what worked for someone else may not work for you, and vice versa. Rather than use someone’s success to excuse your possible failure, put your mind to good use by using it to leap over the obstacles, rather than head butting them.

3. The Time Isn’t Right

Our minds, when trying to desperately hang on to comfort and safety, are very good at saying, “When I have this much money, I’ll change my diet,” or “When I move to a better location, I’ll start a new exercise program.” The point is, the only time to ever start anything is right now. Right this second — not tomorrow, not next week, and certainly not when you win the lotto.

Advertising

4. I Feel Too Sorry For Myself

When we feel sorry for ourselves, our minds love to run away with all the things we’re then apparently allowed to do, or not do. For example, “I had a bad day at work,” means you get to drink a bottle of wine instead of exercising, to comfort yourself and your frazzled mind. The thing is, if you change your thoughts on what gives you comfort, you can implement healthy life changes. In this case, a bottle of wine isn’t necessary to give you comfort, you’ve just thought it so often that your mind isn’t going to release the idea. Start thinking about a relaxing walk, a long hot bath, and a nourishing meal instead.

5. I’ve Never Done It Before

This may be a true statement; however, it shouldn’t be the reason you avoid making life changes. If you’ve never done it before, the only thing that’s going to happen when you do it is you’ll learn how to do it! See how ridiculous that particular lie is (as a way of getting out of beneficial change)?

6. There’s Always Tomorrow

Quite frankly, no, there isn’t always tomorrow. Not because something bad might happen, but because there’s only ever today. If you want to make a life change that’s going to benefit you, what’s the point of waiting for tomorrow? Dive in, take action, and get going right now on the path towards life change before you end up thinking that there’s always tomorrow — every single day.

Advertising

7. I’ll Only Do It One More Time

If we said this statement only once, it wouldn’t be a problem. However, the mere fact that you’re telling yourself that you’ll only do something (non-beneficial) one more time, means you probably shouldn’t be doing it at all. Once you make a habit of this, it’s harder and harder to move beyond “one more time” to never again. How about adjusting that statement to “never again” instead.

8. I Can’t Be Bothered

This is understandable for many reasons. Firstly, if we can’t be bothered to make a change in the first place, we’re not going to find the motivation to do it anyway. Everything depends on how much you really want to do something. Your desire to create change needs to outweigh the lies your mind tells you in order to keep you in a state of not bothering. The way to break through this one is to simply deal with feeling unmotivated and push through it anyway. Keep pushing, even if it means taking just one, tiny step towards you goal.

9. I Need Time Off

Yes, you do need time off. However, if you’re following a cherished dream and you allow yourself to be tugged into this particular lie, you’ll start creating a pattern that will eventually stop the momentum you’ve gathered to reach your goal. Take time off, but schedule it to work with the steps you’re taking to fulfil your dreams, rather than using it as an excuse not to.

Advertising

10. I Don’t Care Anymore

In rare cases, this lie might be true. Most times; however, it’s a lie you’re telling yourself because the challenges are huge, the work is hard, or you haven’t seen results yet. Persistence and consistency are the keys to making life changes work.

You will see results if you keep going. Keep in mind that the only reason you’re on the path to life change is because you did care — you cared very much. If you practice awareness of these negative thoughts (or weeds) in your mind that push you off track, you’ll be on your way to planting new ones that will ensure you flourish and grow.

More by this author

Nicole Leigh West

Travel and Lifestyle Writer, Choreographer, Reiki Practitioner

7 Relationship Secrets That Work Why We Always Make Our Lifelong Friends When We Were Young 7 Ways To Truly Master Your Own Mind 10 Nutrition Tips To Keep Your Entire Body Happy and Healthy 5 Ways to Defeat The Stubborn Negative Thoughts in Your Mind

Trending in Communication

1 15 Inspiring Ideas to Boost Your Motivation for Success 2 How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success 3 How to Turn Your Fear of Missing Out into a Joy of Missing Out 4 What Is Resilience and Why Is It Important? 5 Positive Motivation vs Negative Motivation: Which One Is Better?

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

Advertising

Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

Advertising

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

Advertising

3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

Advertising

5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

Read Next