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Do you want to know why you haven’t been able to stick to your goals, achieve the success you’ve wanted, or why you aren’t making more money? It’s because of your mental weakness. And it’s not just you. All humans are mentally weak. I mean, think about it. We’re the only species that has the choice not to be the best we can be. Every other species does everything they can to be the best because it’s necessary for their survival.
I can’t tell you how many businesses I’ve started that haven’t amounted to anything. When things started to get tough, I would quit. I’ve done this with quite a few things. And I can’t even count how many times I haven’t even tried something. I now know this was due to mental weakness.
Humans don’t have to be the best, we can choose to do less than we can. The psychology of this choice is what makes us weak and is called the “wet blanket syndrome”. Our brains consider change very dangerous and try to protect us by creating emotional resistance to change. If the mind can squash a great idea with emotional turmoil, it will. It’s not intelligence that we lack here, but mental weakness. However, we can hack into this. Below are 10 of the best ways to avoid mental weakness.
1. Set Goals.
The human brain loves to set goals. But what it loves, even more, is accomplishing them. More often than not, tho, we set a goal and then give up on it. There can be several reasons for this. Either our goals are too big or they are too small. And unfortunately, it’s the latter that happens more often. Read this guest post I wrote about how to set big goals.
Also, sign up below and you can get our FREE Goal Setting Workbook. This workbook goes in depth to setting goals that actually fit with your life and your priorities. If you’re setting goals based on your priorities, you are more likely to be successful at achieving those goals.
2. Set yourself up for Success.
Becoming stronger mentally doesn’t mean you have to avoid temptations every day. Instead, modify your environment so you’ll be more likely to be successful in goals you’re trying to accomplish.
For example, say you want to start getting up in the morning to exercise. The night before put out your workout clothes and shoes so they are ready for you to put on immediately in the morning. Trying to eat better? Plan your meals for the week and make enough meals ahead of time so you don’t have the chore of thinking about what you’ll need to eat for lunch or dinner. When you set yourself up so you don’t have to make as many choices throughout the day, you free up your mental energy to use towards the really tough decisions. Instead of having to worry about trying to resist eating cake every day, you already know what your healthy treat is for the day.
3. Push past your comfort zone.
Humans are not only emotionally weak, but we are pretty darn lazy too. If we get into situations where we know it will be hard or there will be discomfort, we look for the easy way out. Something that provides immediate relief. Like being stressed from work and getting home and drinking 2 too many glasses of wine. Or eating your feelings through a whole pint of Ben and Jerry’s. But usually, those short-term solutions just create bigger problems for us in the long wrong. “Crap, I was supposed to fit into my awesome bikini this summer!”
I’m not saying you don’t get to treat yourself once in a while. No, you can, but you plan those. I’m just saying using some self-restraint here and remind yourself of the bigger picture and your long-term goals. Push yourself to do a budget, even though you know you’ll get freaked out about your money situation. Get your ass up in the morning and get that workout done, even if you want to hit snooze and go back to sleep.
The more you tolerate discomfort, the more confident you’ll become in your ability to do difficult things.
4. Shift your negative thoughts.
You need to adjust that inner mean voice inside your head that keeps feeding you bullshit. Change that negative thought of “I’ll never get this done” to “If I work hard at this I will have no problem getting it done”.
Another trick I use is I named my inner negative voice to someone I really don’t like. Someone who I would never ever in my life actually listen to, because they are so ridiculous. You can either make up a name for this person or use someone famous that is known for being a negative person you would never listen to. Mine is Trump. So whenever that voice inside my head goes “you look fat today”. I say “shut up Cheeto face! You have no clue what you’re talking about. I look fabulous!”
5. Balance emotions.
You can make the best decisions when your emotions and logic are in sync. If all your decisions were emotional, you’d never get to go to your daughter’s destination wedding in a year because you’d spend your money at the moment on what makes you happy right now. And on the flip side, if you always made your choices logically, life could get a little boring.
So the best is to make sure you have a good balance between logic and emotion. If you are overly excited about something or anxious, write down the pros and cons. Looking at this list will kick in your logic brain to make sure you make the right decision. Allow yourself some time for those spontaneous “fun” days, but make sure you make a plan and set a limit so you don’t overdo it.
6. Live Intentionally, every day.
It’s hard to stay the course if you are unsure of your purpose. Write out a clear and detailed mission about what you want to do with your life. Think of how you want to be remembered. When you’re struggling to take the next step, remind yourself why it’s important to keep going. Make sure you include tasks that move you in the direction of your purpose every day.It's hard to stay the course if you are unsure of your purpose. #goals #mentalhealth #mentalstrengthClick To Tweet
7. No more excuses.
Stop making excuses. If you are coming up short on your goals, you need to take a good hard look at why. Look for a reason why you failed and use that information so you can do better next time.
Take full responsibility for your shortcomings. Don’t blame others or your circumstances for your failures. Own it, learn from and change it next time.
8. Do something hard every day.
We don’t get better if we don’t grow. And to grow we need to do something different, something difficult every day. What is comfortable to you may be uncomfortable for someone else, so you need to analyze where your comfort zone line is.
Pick something slightly outside that comfort zone and do it every single day. That could be speaking up for yourself, asking for what you want, starting a business or singing karaoke. Every time you step out of your comfort zone it gets easier. Push yourself a little each day and you’ll be amazed at where you are a year from now.
9. Give it 10 minutes.
Having mental strength won’t magically make you motivated. However, it can make you feel more productive, even when you don’t feel like it.
When you get tempted to put something off, use the 10-minute rule. When you think of that workout but are looking at the couch so longingly, make yourself run for just 10 minutes. If after 10 minutes you still don’t want to do it or complete the task, give yourself permission to quit.
Getting started is by far the hardest part. Once you start, you’ll probably realize it’s not as bad as you thought it was going to be and you’ll finish.
10. Get Emotional.
Mental weakness comes down to your brain trying to protect you from pain. Because our brain perceives change as dangerous it will derail us in any way it can. If the mind can kill a great idea with emotional turmoil, it will.
This is often what derails you from your resolutions and achieving those big goals you’ve set out to do. Since it’s not intelligence we lack but emotional weakness, we can hack into this.
You need to get emotional. And don’t just use any emotion, you need to use a powerful one to get yourself and keep yourself moving. And the best emotion to that?
So get mad! Stop letting yourself off the hook. Stop accepting your situation. Stop settling. And STOP BREAKING YOUR WORD TO YOURSELF!
If you’re fat. Get mad. If you’re broke. Get mad.
Decide right now, NO MORE. Indifference is a disease, you have to attack it. The next best thing to prosperity is struggle. You need inspiration, or better yet, desperation. So ignite those strong feelings and decide no more excuses. Your life, or lack thereof, is your own frickin fault!
Stop pointing the finger and take a deep hard look in the mirror. You don’t have what you want because you’ve been lazy, undisciplined and mentally weak. Own it, accept it and get mad about it. Then ACT on it!
Now that you have the fundamental tools to build up your mental strength, the next step is to act on them. Let us know in the comments where you’ve been struggling and let us know how you’re going to make that change!