Understanding YOU it’s in your brain not mind We all want to understand ourselves more, how we react and how we feel. How often have you thought or people told you , “it’s all in the mind.”
Well here’s the REVELATION it’s not in the mind … it is all in the brain. I went on an amazing coaching course recently (well re sat the whole course) with the inspirational Dax Moy.
This taught me how to coach and be coached through the game of life and how to help you win. This blog covers the main things I learnt that I think are massively important, to help you understand YOU. Take out of it some actions for YOU and let me know how you get on.
You are unique, every single day
You are unique and that is the truth. There is only one of you, me any of us. I never coach the same person twice, we are all unique people every single day we wake up. We have different pressures, food, hormones, and hydration levels and therefore YOU are slightly different EVERYDAY. Your brain will also react slightly differently based on the different you. Remember this for yourself and that around you, allow a little flexibility and empathy.
We are a combination of two things, instinct and experience
Your unique reaction to a situation or person is very much driven from some base instincts that remain in us from our caveman days. The survival instinct remains strong within us and will drive us to act in certain ways. Laid on top of this are our own experiences that are hard wired into us.
These two combined, these base human instincts and our stories that we store to give life predictability is our paradigm. We also all have our own paradigm and value system that we have built from our experiences that are hard wired into us. These are the things that give us an instant reaction to something when we think or see them e.g. for me I don’t like coffee, so the smell of it makes me feel a little bit sick
Okay Coach, all very well but what does this mean? Well they are some key things you need to realise to succeed in loving your life. It’s not in YOUR mind, it’s in your brain … it is how we (humans) are programmed to react. Here’s some quick tips to help you
A StarHer Guide to the StrongHer Brainset
1) The brain likes predictability
Based on our survival instinct our brain will look for patterns that it can predict as these are “safe” even if they are not in your best interests. Eg the bottle of wine after a bad day. Don’t try to change everything at once, take small steps towards your goals. Action: List out the first thing you will change on your Love your Life plan. How will you start it? How will you measure it? Who will support you?
2) The brain will make you fear change
The brain wants to protect you and keep you alive above all. When you are in fear mode, the thinking, brainy part of our brain closes off and we cannot use it. We will act on past stories and experiences to keep us safe. Action: Question hard wired connections, eg I’ve had a hard day, I “deserve” a treat, a glass of wine. Ask does it serve my purpose? Beware of moral licence, justifying behaviors with “need”, “deserve”, “reward” watch out for these hard wired justifications. Think about the bottle of wine you’ve earnt after a hard day at work.
3) You will feel threat when you make a change
If in doubt it will put you into threat mode. Fear can be triggered by a change that was too fast, too slow or something the brain is not sure of intent. The reactions to threat, can include freeze, flight or fright. When in fear you can’t use the thinking part of your brain, you revert to past experiences and stories. Action: Recognise fear in yourself and verbalise them to make them less of a threat. For others, be aware and try not to judge e.g. your partner being argumentative when you get home from work. What is their fear? What can you help them with? Being more aware in this way will make you less judgemental.
4) Wired and fired
You are human, our brains are wired to work in a certain way. We evolved from cavemen where our fears were based on staying alive, feeding and sleeping. We are still wired in that way, hence we like predictability and stories. YOU will have your own stories to increase that level of predictability, a brain comfort blanket if you like. With this comes wired and fired emotions leading into actions. Eg Hard day = I “deserve” a bottle of wine.
Action: Challenge these wired and fired links, ask yourself each time “does it serve my purpose” or “is it true”. If I drink that wine does it serve my purpose? Is it true it makes me a failure?
5) Negative like velcro, positive is like Teflon
Again due to our brain wanting us to survive, our brains cling to the negative as it is more likely to endanger us. It will also err on the side of negativity to give us the best chance of survival. The brain wants to maintain the status quo and balance.
Action: Challenge your negative thoughts by asking “Is that true”, search for the truth and the meaning behind your words. Don’t just accept those hard wired thoughts and associations, challenge them as that is where we change and grow.
6) Speed of change
Again back to the YOU are unique, each of us have a reaction to speed of change eg for some it can be fast for others it can’t be too fast. Think about your own reactions and how you cope with change
Action: Put in place the small steps to change, e.g. weight loss actions take them at YOUR pace. I am not going to make this a 10 day programme, a 21 or 28 day programme it is your programme to take at your pace.
7) Self esteem bank account
Reward yourself and value what you have achieved not what you haven’t. Our brain has a goal seeking neurotransmitter called dopamine, it drives us onto a goal no matter what is in the way and measures our success only against that goal. Yet at the end when we get to that goal it doesn’t reward us with a virtual thank you, a serotonin fix the happy hormone.
Action: Reward yourself for the small steps you take towards a goal. Keep an achievement diary, write down, recognise and pat yourself on the back for what you HAVE done at the end of each day. Get that happy hormone fix. Think of it as adding to the self esteem bank account, each time you take a step towards a goal add a credit. Think of it as the Natwest pigs of the brain … if you remember those?
8) Where are you?
The brain has deep wired connections between you and your environment. Are there places that you go and they bring back deep seated memories that trigger happy or sad feelings? Your brain is reliving the experience and your hormones will do the same, triggering cortisol for those upsetting memories.
For example I recently split up from someone I really cared about and I’ve found it really tough. I had lots of memories about him and our time together. I have had to get rid of all messages and any evidence of our relationship as it doesn’t serve my purpose to revisit it. To make my company succeed and for me to help as many people as possible it doesn’t help me to revisit this. It made me sad and unhappy yet I would look at those messages and again trigger off sad feelings and cortisol. I’ve stopped the connection and those feelings.
Action: In your home sit in each room and think about how you feel when you are in that room, what feelings does it trigger? Do they make you feel good or not so much? If not so much what can you do to change that. How can you make each room somewhere you love being?
9) Who’s on your team?
Your life plan will be dependent on those round you, who’s on your team? Do you have your die hard supporters? What do you want them to do to help you? For example when you reach for that bottle of wine after a hard day at work, that you “deserve” do you want them to ask you “how does that serve you?”. Or if you say “I am fat” is that true?
Action: Think about the people in your life, how will they help you? Are they supporters or doubters? What do you NEED your supporters to do? Ask them to do it … SIMPLES
10) Be authentic and the real you
Last point, the most important don’t be scared of being you. Don’t be scared of showing emotion and how you feel, you think about your fears and threats. If you learn to work with these and share them they become less scary to start with. When you are showing your true emotion others round you will feel empathy and connect with you. It is part of being human, sharing real emotion isn’t weak don’t be ashamed or scared of it.
Action: Think about what or who has triggered your fear and what you small steps you can take to make the fear less scary. Or find a coach like me to help you, we are trained in keeping things on your agenda, helping you find YOUR truth and coaching you to win in life.
I’ve coached some of clients recently and have seen some amazing changes in them, but also know they feel more comfortable with themselves and how they feel. Watch this video by Brenegh Brown, vulnerability is power. http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html
Ready to Get Started?
If you’re really struggling and need some help but don’t know where to start and feeling a little lost. You can book a FREE StrongHer Transformation Session, worth £97 here.
30 minutes with one of our amazing, expert coaches to find out why things haven’t worked for you before and get clarity on what you’re goals are.
We only run a limited number as we want to help YOU as much as possible.
Like what you’ve read and want to follow us:
Twitter: StrongHer Formula
StrongHer Formula Facebook: Nicola Buckley, StrongHer Health and Confidence Coaching and FREE coaching group here.