I was listening to a podcast from John O’Leary where he interviewed Mel Robbins about her 5 second rule. This is a fascinating technique to help you break bad thoughts and habits. And it works! My husband and I tried it the other morning when we were out too late the night before and didn’t want to get up for the gym. We counted down, “5, 4, 3, 2, 1” and like magic we popped up out of bed!
After listening to Mel’s story, I intentionally took inventory of the negative thoughts that find their way into my mind when I’m sitting in the quiet. The scope and number of those nasties was disturbing…and I fancy myself a pretty positive person! I wonder if those thoughts are always there, I just happened to stop for a moment and become consciously aware of them. Scary! As I slipped into a mild state of fear, anxiety, and overwhelm, I focused on the new technique and it worked.
There are times each day where doubt and fear creep into my thoughts.
“I can’t do this…”
“I wish I had…”
“Can I really trust?”
“I’m not good enough…”
There have been times in life when major changes have caused multiple hours, days, and weeks of negative thoughts. I am grateful to have this new tool to help break these cycles.
I would also offer a second that develops toughness and resilience, and has worked for me most of my life. I have pushed myself to do at least one thing per day I didn’t want to do. A close friend and I share this practice. It builds grit, provides perspective, and helps you push past whatever it might be you are putting off and get it done. Best part, you get to celebrate that you dominated something whether it’s 25 burpees, sitting down to read, eating my broccoli, or making a sales call. Having accomplished something you didn’t want to do naturally introduces positive energy.
It is never too late to break a negative cycle. It takes work, intentional focus and practice.
I know I can’t permanently escape the fear, doubt, and anxiety, but I pray that God gives me strength every day to keep fighting back.