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7 Powerful Questions to Get Unstuck Instantly and Moving Forward Again

7 Powerful Questions to Get Unstuck Instantly and Moving Forward Again
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“You will never rise above how you see yourself.” – Oprah

What’s holding you back from your desired levels of health, wealth, and happiness?

These 7 powerful questions will help you identify the obstacles and get you unstuck instantly.

1. What do you want?

Example using “Dave.” Dave:

“I want to be happy. I want to make $100K. I want to lose 20 pounds. I want to stop procrastinating.”

The gap from where you are now versus where you want to be creates frustration and inner turmoil. It’s like trying to go from one side of the river to the other side without a bridge. To get unstuck, you need a bridge to get to the other side of the river. That bridge can be you, a friend, a seminar, a book, a coach, a psychotherapist, etc.

2. What would you like to feel as a result of getting what you want?

Dave: “I want to feel alive and happy and live up to my potential. I want to feel deserving, good enough, and not guilty.”

If you feel undeserving, guilty, or not good enough, it means you have acquired faulty negative core beliefs from childhood. You need to uncover the earliest incident that caused you to not feel good enough, etc.

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3. Do you have the courage and confidence to go after what you want?

Dave: “No, I keep procrastinating. I’m afraid most of the time. I make excuses. I’m not meeting my sales quota at work. I’ll get fired if I don’t get my act together.”

Lack of confidence and courage means you don’t believe in yourself. Successful people allow themselves to fail because they know eventually they will succeed. To get on the path to success, you must have the courage to take risks to fail and then pick yourself up and do it all over again because success will come after a few failures.

Again, identify the negative core beliefs that hold you back from being courageous and confident.

4. Do you believe you deserve to get what you want?

Dave: “Yes and no. I want it so badly but a part of me says: ‘Who do you think you are? You’re never going to amount to much. Mom always said you’re not as smart as your brother.'”

Beliefs => Thoughts => Feelings => Actions

Dave’s beliefs… “I’m not deserving. I’m worthless. I’m not going to amount to anything.”

These beliefs create thoughts of… “Who do you think you are? You’re not good enough! You’re not meant to make a lot of money.”

Dave’s thoughts create his feelings of… “Ugh. I’m afraid to make the phone call to try to sell to the next customer. I’m a loser.”

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Dave’s feelings create his actions of procrastination and the need to soothe his anxiety with unhealthy foods. Procrastinating and eating junk reinforces his original beliefs that he is worthless and not deserving of success and or a fit body.

Dave needs to uncover the original incidents that created his negative beliefs that he is worthless, guilty, and a loser. He needs to overturn those negative beliefs. Then he will believe he deserves health, wealth, and happiness.

Like Dave, you become what you think about – a self-fulfilling prophecy.

What happened to you that caused the negative beliefs that, “I’m not worthy; I’m not lovable; and/or I’m not enough?” Were you bullied at school? Did you feel rejected and unloved when your sister was born because mom didn’t have as much time for you anymore? Did your parents divorce when you were young? These types of events can be the root of why you don’t love yourself unconditionally.

5. What are you afraid of if you succeed? What will not be in alignment?

Dave: “My sales quota will increase. I’ll have to work harder which means I’ll have less time with my kids. My siblings and cousins will make fun of me for being a ‘rich and thin snob.’ I’ll have to buy a new wardrobe if I get fit and I can’t do that because I’m broke. I’m afraid I’ll be teased for eating healthy foods.”

The consequences of success holds Dave back from taking action. He doesn’t want to lose the love of his family and friends and he doesn’t want to empty his wallet to buy new clothes.

We are hard-wired to seek validation through friendship, family, love, and belonging. Dave is stuck because he is afraid he won’t belong anymore if he were to become more successful and fit than the people he hangs out with.

“You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” – Jim Rohn.

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In order to move forward, find a new tribe where you are the smaller fish in a pond of big fishes. The big fishes will support you to grow to their level.

When Dave feels good about himself he will know what he needs to say to his family and friends so that he doesn’t feel abandoned when he achieves success and a fit body.

Dave needs a confidant or coach to get him through this zone of discomfort of finding a new tribe where he feels he belongs.

6. What are you afraid of if you fail?

Dave: “I’ll be humiliated if I fail. It’s easier to keep struggling financially and to keep struggling with my weight. If I lose weight and gain it back and/or make money and then get fired if I can’t keep up with the demands of a better job, my friends will be laugh behind my back and say ‘See. I knew he was going to fail.'”

Most of us have memories of humiliation. Our psyche doesn’t want us to ever experience that pain again. Dave is subconsciously afraid of the painful consequences and that’s why he is stuck.

To overcome fear of failure, you need to visit the parts of you that hold the memories of the original humiliating experiences. Your highest self of today can tell that part that you are lovable and enough. When that part feels heard and unburdens itself of the humiliation, you will no longer be afraid of failing or succeeding.

What humiliating and shameful experiences hold you back from taking the risks to go after what you want?

7. What do you need in order to get what you want?

Dave: “I need to feel that I deserve to make $100K and that I deserve to have a fit body. I need to let go of the negative old tapes I keep playing of my mother and sister criticizing me whenever I try to improve myself. I need to love myself and believe that I can do this.”

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If you can’t look in the mirror and say, “I love you. You are awesome. You are beautiful!” you will inevitably sabotage yourself when you try to move forward. That’s why it’s important to find and overturn your negative core beliefs.

footprint in sand 2 e-1

    How to discover and overturn your negative core beliefs so that you can move forward again.

    Dave’s answers showed you that fears drive most of your behaviors. Fears hold you back from expressing your true self and living to your full potential. Fears are likely rooted in negative core beliefs from old hurts that you probably aren’t conscious of.

    Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs shows that Dave is trying to self-actualize (become the best version of him) through skipping the self-esteem stage. He can’t skip self-esteem and go from love/belonging to self-actualization. He will achieve health, wealth, and happiness when he overcomes his low self-esteem.

    maslowabc

      To get unstuck for good and achieve health, wealth, and happiness, you need to have self-esteem. You will have high self-esteem when you heal the parts of you that hold faulty beliefs such as, “I’m not lovable. I’m not worthy. I’m not enough.”

      For example, when you were two-years-old mom brought home your baby sister and she stopped paying attention to you. You took on the belief that “I’m not lovable” because she wasn’t hugging you as much anymore.

      Then more rejections happened at school. You were bullied or someone you had a crush on rejected you. Negative experiences like these reinforced the “I’m not lovable” belief you acquired at two-years-old.

      In order to heal the “I’m not lovable” belief, be with that two-year-old part of you that is sitting on the floor, desperately waiting for mom to pick you up and hug you. Tell that part that you didn’t get hugs because mom was exhausted caring for the baby. Bring that two-year-old onto your lap and give her hugs and tell her that she is lovable and that she is enough.

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      Now you have a new image of your two-year-old self. She’s got her arms around you. She’s no longer going to hold you back from your dreams. She’s going to give you the confidence you need to take risks to get to the next level of your life. Because you love yourself now, you will have the confidence and courage to overcome your fears and take risks to get unstuck.

      What negative core beliefs are you holding onto that are keeping you stuck? If you identify what they are through the answers to these 7 questions, you will overturn the faulty beliefs, feel better about yourself, and get unstuck instantly and moving forward again. photo credit: JIGGS IMAGES via photopin cc

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      Last Updated on July 20, 2021

      How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

      How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)
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      You’re standing behind the curtain, just about to make your way on stage to face the many faces half-shrouded in darkness in front of you. As you move towards the spotlight, your body starts to feel heavier with each step. A familiar thump echoes throughout your body – your heartbeat has gone off the charts.

      Don’t worry, you’re not the only one with glossophobia(also known as speech anxiety or the fear of speaking to large crowds). Sometimes, the anxiety happens long before you even stand on stage.

      Your body’s defence mechanism responds by causing a part of your brain to release adrenaline into your blood – the same chemical that gets released as if you were being chased by a lion.

      Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you overcome your fear of public speaking:

      1. Prepare yourself mentally and physically

      According to experts, we’re built to display anxiety and to recognize it in others. If your body and mind are anxious, your audience will notice. Hence, it’s important to prepare yourself before the big show so that you arrive on stage confident, collected and ready.

      “Your outside world is a reflection of your inside world. What goes on in the inside, shows on the outside.” – Bob Proctor

      Exercising lightly before a presentation helps get your blood circulating and sends oxygen to the brain. Mental exercises, on the other hand, can help calm the mind and nerves. Here are some useful ways to calm your racing heart when you start to feel the butterflies in your stomach:

      Warming up

      If you’re nervous, chances are your body will feel the same way. Your body gets tense, your muscles feel tight or you’re breaking in cold sweat. The audience will notice you are nervous.

      If you observe that this is exactly what is happening to you minutes before a speech, do a couple of stretches to loosen and relax your body. It’s better to warm up before every speech as it helps to increase the functional potential of the body as a whole. Not only that, it increases muscle efficiency, improves reaction time and your movements.

      Here are some exercises to loosen up your body before show time:

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      1. Neck and shoulder rolls – This helps relieve upper body muscle tension and pressure as the rolls focus on rotating the head and shoulders, loosening the muscle. Stress and anxiety can make us rigid within this area which can make you feel agitated, especially when standing.
      2. Arm stretches – We often use this part of our muscles during a speech or presentation through our hand gestures and movements. Stretching these muscles can reduce arm fatigue, loosen you up and improve your body language range.
      3. Waist twists – Place your hands on your hips and rotate your waist in a circular motion. This exercise focuses on loosening the abdominal and lower back regions which is essential as it can cause discomfort and pain, further amplifying any anxieties you may experience.

      Stay hydrated

      Ever felt parched seconds before speaking? And then coming up on stage sounding raspy and scratchy in front of the audience? This happens because the adrenaline from stage fright causes your mouth to feel dried out.

      To prevent all that, it’s essential we stay adequately hydrated before a speech. A sip of water will do the trick. However, do drink in moderation so that you won’t need to go to the bathroom constantly.

      Try to avoid sugary beverages and caffeine, since it’s a diuretic – meaning you’ll feel thirstier. It will also amplify your anxiety which prevents you from speaking smoothly.

      Meditate

      Meditation is well-known as a powerful tool to calm the mind. ABC’s Dan Harris, co-anchor of Nightline and Good Morning America weekend and author of the book titled10% Happier , recommends that meditation can help individuals to feel significantly calmer, faster.

      Meditation is like a workout for your mind. It gives you the strength and focus to filter out the negativity and distractions with words of encouragement, confidence and strength.

      Mindfulness meditation, in particular, is a popular method to calm yourself before going up on the big stage. The practice involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present without drifting into concerns about the past or future – which likely includes floundering on stage.

      Here’s a nice example of guided meditation before public speaking:

      2. Focus on your goal

      One thing people with a fear of public speaking have in common is focusing too much on themselves and the possibility of failure.

      Do I look funny? What if I can’t remember what to say? Do I look stupid? Will people listen to me? Does anyone care about what I’m talking about?’

      Instead of thinking this way, shift your attention to your one true purpose – contributing something of value to your audience.

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      Decide on the progress you’d like your audience to make after your presentation. Notice their movements and expressions to adapt your speech to ensure that they are having a good time to leave the room as better people.

      If your own focus isn’t beneficial and what it should be when you’re speaking, then shift it to what does. This is also key to establishing trust during your presentation as the audience can clearly see that you have their interests at heart.[1]

      3. Convert negativity to positivity

      There are two sides constantly battling inside of us – one is filled with strength and courage while the other is doubt and insecurities. Which one will you feed?

      ‘What if I mess up this speech? What if I’m not funny enough? What if I forget what to say?’

      It’s no wonder why many of us are uncomfortable giving a presentation. All we do is bring ourselves down before we got a chance to prove ourselves. This is also known as a self-fulfilling prophecy – a belief that comes true because we are acting as if it already is. If you think you’re incompetent, then it will eventually become true.

      Motivational coaches tout that positive mantras and affirmations tend to boost your confidents for the moments that matter most. Say to yourself: “I’ll ace this speech and I can do it!”

      Take advantage of your adrenaline rush to encourage positive outcome rather than thinking of the negative ‘what ifs’.

      Here’s a video of Psychologist Kelly McGonigal who encourages her audience to turn stress into something positive as well as provide methods on how to cope with it:

      4. Understand your content

      Knowing your content at your fingertips helps reduce your anxiety because there is one less thing to worry about. One way to get there is to practice numerous times before your actual speech.

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      However, memorizing your script word-for-word is not encouraged. You can end up freezing should you forget something. You’ll also risk sounding unnatural and less approachable.

      “No amount of reading or memorizing will make you successful in life. It is the understanding and the application of wise thought that counts.” – Bob Proctor

      Many people unconsciously make the mistake of reading from their slides or memorizing their script word-for-word without understanding their content – a definite way to stress themselves out.

      Understanding your speech flow and content makes it easier for you to convert ideas and concepts into your own words which you can then clearly explain to others in a conversational manner. Designing your slides to include text prompts is also an easy hack to ensure you get to quickly recall your flow when your mind goes blank.[2]

      One way to understand is to memorize the over-arching concepts or ideas in your pitch. It helps you speak more naturally and let your personality shine through. It’s almost like taking your audience on a journey with a few key milestones.

      5. Practice makes perfect

      Like most people, many of us are not naturally attuned to public speaking. Rarely do individuals walk up to a large audience and present flawlessly without any research and preparation.

      In fact, some of the top presenters make it look easy during showtime because they have spent countless hours behind-the-scenes in deep practice. Even great speakers like the late John F. Kennedy would spend months preparing his speech beforehand.

      Public speaking, like any other skill, requires practice – whether it be practicing your speech countless of times in front of a mirror or making notes. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect!

      6. Be authentic

      There’s nothing wrong with feeling stressed before going up to speak in front of an audience.

      Many people fear public speaking because they fear others will judge them for showing their true, vulnerable self. However, vulnerability can sometimes help you come across as more authentic and relatable as a speaker.

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      Drop the pretence of trying to act or speak like someone else and you’ll find that it’s worth the risk. You become more genuine, flexible and spontaneous, which makes it easier to handle unpredictable situations – whether it’s getting tough questions from the crowd or experiencing an unexpected technical difficulty.

      To find out your authentic style of speaking is easy. Just pick a topic or issue you are passionate about and discuss this like you normally would with a close family or friend. It is like having a conversation with someone in a personal one-to-one setting. A great way to do this on stage is to select a random audience member(with a hopefully calming face) and speak to a single person at a time during your speech. You’ll find that it’s easier trying to connect to one person at a time than a whole room.

      With that said, being comfortable enough to be yourself in front of others may take a little time and some experience, depending how comfortable you are with being yourself in front of others. But once you embrace it, stage fright will not be as intimidating as you initially thought.

      Presenters like Barack Obama are a prime example of a genuine and passionate speaker:

      7. Post speech evaluation

      Last but not the least, if you’ve done public speaking and have been scarred from a bad experience, try seeing it as a lesson learned to improve yourself as a speaker.

      Don’t beat yourself up after a presentation

      We are the hardest on ourselves and it’s good to be. But when you finish delivering your speech or presentation, give yourself some recognition and a pat on the back.

      You managed to finish whatever you had to do and did not give up. You did not let your fears and insecurities get to you. Take a little more pride in your work and believe in yourself.

      Improve your next speech

      As mentioned before, practice does make perfect. If you want to improve your public speaking skills, try asking someone to film you during a speech or presentation. Afterwards, watch and observe what you can do to improve yourself next time.

      Here are some questions you can ask yourself after every speech:

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      • How did I do?
      • Are there any areas for improvement?
      • Did I sound or look stressed?
      • Did I stumble on my words? Why?
      • Was I saying “um” too often?
      • How was the flow of the speech?

      Write everything you observed down and keep practicing and improving. In time, you’ll be able to better manage your fears of public speaking and appear more confident when it counts.

      If you want even more tips about public speaking or delivering a great presentation, check out these articles too:

      Reference

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