Motivation: Where did it go? (pt. 1 of 3)
Motivation: Using Your Unconscious Mind for a Change, Now!
Motivation never “goes” anywhere; it’s just a function of what you are focusing on at this moment, relative to what has meaning for you. Recently, I was asked, “How do you, as coach and hypnotherapist stay motivated on projects? How would you go about this?”.
Here is the gist of my reply:
- We are always motivated to do things every single day
- I looked at where I wanted to be in 3 months’ time
- I looked at what I was currently motivated to do and asked myself one question, “Will acting this way and doing the same things that would take me closer or further away from what will give me the most sense of fulfilment?”
- Once I realised what my 5 top outcomes I would be willing to work towards every single day were, I wrote them down on a piece of paper
- I then made an old fashioned type of “school calendar”, where the goals were in the first column and there were 5 other columns, one for each day of the week, with a blank box for each goal each day
- Every single day I took a few seconds to put a tick next to each goal to see if I had taken an action to take me closer of further away to my outcomes.
Would you be surprised if I told you that I started to take actions automatically, including training for the next Cardiff Half Marathon, almost as if by magic? What I mean is, I found myself going through the same process I do when I clean my teeth (“Have I done it? No. Go do it now.”) I didn’t think about it. I didn’t question it. It’s not open to debate. I just go and do it.You can too.If you’re not motivated in a particular area of life (and that’s highly likely), then you haven’t looked at what is most important to you over the next couple of years and you haven’t looked at all the consequences of not doing it.
Once you do that, you can easily see where the main sets of sub goals or actions are that you need to engage in.
Will you run into resistance? Yes, you bet. Will you be days where you don’t do anything to move forwards with items on your list and you can’t put a tick to show you’ve taken some action now? Sure.
Will it make a difference?
As long as you look at your list each day, and tick where you succeeded (no need for an “x” if you don’t), you WILL train yourself to make this an automatic habit.
So here I am. My son’s having a nap, as he woke up very early this morning. I’m bleary eyed, but I find myself looking at the list at the goal that says “Weekly Newsletter”. “No tick.…need to do this now.”
Before I tell you what happened, here’s some exciting news: Low-tech “ticking off” daily action steps on a list might not sound like your cup of tea. But consciously doing a process like this is the only way you can start to influence the 2 minds: your conscious and your unconscious. Your unconscious tends to do things on automatic pilot and generally resists new things that look like hard work. So does your conscious mind.
The only way you managed to make teeth brushing automatic was to be consciously told and tell yourself to do it enough till your unconscious took over and did it automatically.
Here’s a secret that could change your life:
Everything you do successfully is ultimately done outside your conscious awareness; it’s automatic and it happens without thinking about it. It’s been programmed into you through repetition. Through repeated actions you’ve made it so you don’t need to think about it and it “just happens”. And that is incredibly useful (unless it’s overeating or smoking or some other habit – but that’s for a future series of articles I’m writing).
Stop for a moment and think about it for a moment.
What do you do automatically without thinking about it every single day?
- Driving a car
- Riding a bike
- Chewing food
- Typing on your computer
- Swallowing when you eat
- Brushing your hair
- Getting dressed
Some of those things needed to be learned and others didn’t. But you know what? You weren’t very good at doing the things you had to learn the first time, and you probably took time to go do that automatically.Now, if you have something that you need to do, that you MUST do to improve the results in your life and take your even closer to your goals, how can you start?
Clue: you must initiate this process of change consciously before you stand any chance of influencing your unconscious mind.
It’s like planting a little seed.
If you’ve every planned anything you’ll know this. My son recently brought back a sunflower from nursery. He’s planted this tiny seed and there were shoots appearing. It needed sun, it needed water and a little bit of nurturing each day. A few seconds to see if it was OK, if it was getting sun and to make sure it had adequate water was enough.
At a certain point the plant is strong enough and secure enough that it pretty much will look after itself, especially if you plant it outside in the right spot and the right time of year. There are things that could happen (storms, blackfly, drought, a gung-ho gardener, for example). But all things being the same, it’s likely that it will flourish.
Back to your list of goals…
…by having a list of the outcomes that you want to take action on, you naturally become motivated. You are either taking a small action (even if it takes a few seconds to do) and recording it with a simple tick on your piece of paper. It requires conscious effort whilst the new behaviours are seeds, but at a certain point, several days or weeks down the road, it becomes automatic (unconscious) and you won’t need to do anything else.
It’s very exciting. You just programmed your unconscious mind for success. But you didn’t do it all in one go. You had to train it consciously, gently and over time. That’s the power of monitoring your mind. That’s the power of unconscious motivation, and ultimately that’s why hypnosis works,
So suddenly I find I’ve signed up to the newsletter provider, added a sign up form to my website AND written this newsletter all by the time Jacob woke up. (I had looked over several days without ticks, and I knew it was NOW or NEVER).
Either way, the process MOTIVATES you, even if it’s because you can see – in black and white – that you haven’t done anything yet. And that especially applies to things you love doing. I love writing. I love to help people overcome problems and stop wasting valuable time and money struggling. But I need to let them know I’m here for them; otherwise I’m not really adding the world-class value I’m known for. I’ve got to be the example of change and motivation. And even if you know that, you need coaching and support sometimes to stay on track (and like I’ve said before, I still have coaching sessions).
It’s true that to stay on track and get laser focused, a coach or hypnotherapist can be incredibly useful., And I’ve had coaching in one form or another for years. In fact, my own personal and professional development has been in proportion to the excellence and support the mentor I have access to. Period.
But the most important thing for any professional hypnotherapist or coach is to promote self-reliance in their clients.
Next week, we’ll look at how to get going when you really don’t want to, but know you should…till then…Go write down what you really want to have happen in your life (irrespective of whether you believe it’s possible) and put it somewhere you can see it. Let the magic begin…
Hypnosis: Making it happen now!
Imagine you know that you have a problem you really want to solve.
Perhaps you want the freedom to buy foods without guilt, or have the choice to walk by a bakery, smell the delicious food and still walk on by instead of being irresistibly drawn towards fresh pastries, like a mariner being wooed to the rocks by a Siren.
Maybe you want to want to make a statement that says you CAN change, despite how it looks. What is it that you need to change because you want to settle down, and you know a certain habit of behaviour doesn’t really reflect well on you?
Sometimes it’s amazing how a simple change at the unconscious level can work. I’ve seen so many of my clients finally meet a stunning partner, who makes them deliriously happy, get married and settled down because they cleared up an old anxiety or fear – or just learned about how to prioritise a goal at the unconscious level.
If you want to make sure you don’t stay getting the same results then listen very carefully. If you’re either good at starting projects but never finish or never even get started, then you’re in trouble.
That’s a lot of people in a lot of areas.
If you don’t understand hypnosis and the unconscious mind, it’s like your mind is that car that a person skips servicing year after year, hoping it will keep going from A to B. One day, it ends up costing you, and probably at the worst possible time.
So what can you do?
It’s very important that you solve it but don’t know how consciously.
You want to gain agreement and compliance in some fashion from your habit-forming unconscious part of you.
Today you are introduced to three advanced tools of hypnosis that will make that happen.
Firstly, let’s clear your mind (for a few minutes).
If you want to make progress, we need to find some ways to help you break the pattern of the usual self-talk. When you think about it, doesn’t most of what you say to yourself (“thinking”) keep replaying like an old record?
Aren’t you fed up of hearing yourself saying things to yourself that are totally demotivating?
Well, there are a couple of cool ways that you can conscious influence your unconscious mind to stop replaying that, and create some space and inner quiet for new behaviours to take root.
Learning Self-Hypnosis for Motivation
Now I teach many forms of advanced self-hypnosis to my clients, but I’ll give you the basics.
You can either:
a) PLACE YOUR TONGUE ON THE ROOF OF YOUR MOUTH, JUST BEHIND YOUR TEETH. This will stop you subvocalizing and reduce self-talk. Do it now. Notice how you can’t “think” in the usual way.
Yes, I know for some people that’s scary! But don’t worry. Take your tongue away and you’ll hear yourself again.
b) MASTER PERIPHERAL VISION. The easiest way to do this to look up at a point near the top of the wall. Stay focused on that point and let your vision gradually “expand” so you notice everything to the left and right sides of that point you stay focused on. Notice the ceiling above and floor below – all the same time. But just notice these out the corners of your eyes, as you stay focused on that one por. Your vision will go slightly blurry. Just relax your yes.
Why do this? It’s pretty amazing, but this will quiet your mind long enough for you to focus on new behaviours.
Secondly, you need to learn to TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR BREATHING. This is especially important if you tend to get stressed or angry or you want to stop smoking.
But to be honest, pretty much any one will benefit from this. Start breathing in through your nose. Exhale out your mouth. Make sure that the exhalation out your mouth is roughly twice as long as the inhalation through your nose.
Stop and do this for 30 seconds now. Don’t even think about reading on. STOP and do this now.
How does that feel?
Ok you’ve cleared your mind, your unconscious mind, of the current clutter
How can you use that to your benefit?
Here’s how. Studies show that visualising your goals does NOT work and actually is more likely to make sure you won’t get them,
(You heard right, but that’s for another article. Stay posted).
What the peer-review literature is showing is that when you IMAGINE obstacles you are likely to face, and consider ways in which you could try to overcome them, then magic starts to happen. It seems to tap into a deeper level of both the reptilian brain and cerebral cortex that says “Danger ahead. Let’s take a step back and SEE what we can do about that.”
You’ve probably heard that athletes use visualisation. They do. You’ve probably heard that it will bring you riches (it won’t). What it will do is allow you to program your unconscious mind to prepare for problems, and help you approach them with increased resourcefulness, so you are much more likely to make progress.
Now that may not sound as sexy. But it’s good news. You wouldn’t want to do something that wasted your valuable time after all, would you? You want to know that you are getting the best up-to-the-minute advice.
No, that’s not negative. It’s a just a fact. You and I will experience problems every day and we need to be prepared for them. It’s why sometimes you have dreams that you don’t like. Your mind is working out all the possible scenarios where there could be problems and is saying “Let’s test this and that out. Let’s see what happens.”
So, take 30 seconds now, and imagine a problem over the next week. Consider your immediate likely first response e.g. dread or worry. Then see yourself trying something out. See yourself tackling it head on, but in a calm, or at least in a resourceful way. Do you need to ask a question for clarification? Do you need to ask a person for 5 minutes to consider some information? How might you positively impact upon this situation. And if there is virtually nothing you can do about it (unlikely, but possible), how might you accept this fact, and look to influence the future.
Pretty cool, isn’t it?
Putting it all together: 3 steps to using self-hypnosis for motivation
When I work with clients, I elicit the precise blocks, tailor the exact scenarios, down to the language their inner mind uses, and help them access the resources that they need to come up with a game plan to influence their unconscious mind.
But you can start today by taking 2 minutes to put it all together:
1) Teeth touching upper palate where it meets the top of your teeth. Get a point on the wall and go into peripheral vision, as light smile appears on your face
2) Start breathing in through your nose and exhale out your mouth. Let the rhythm be natural for you, but let the exhalation be longer than the inhale
3) Think about a upcoming challenge that is important for you to handle effectively. Imagine yourself being resourceful and look at how that feels.
Thanks and till next time!Google+