Small changes in your thinking that make a BIG difference

When people come on our certification courses in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) they are always blown away by the power of the interventions to change behaviours, how we feel and how we behave. It’s easy to love the big powerful stuff, but the small changes we make in our thinking are often the thing that ensures long term success because they create good habits which serve you for life. Here are our top tips to try:

Identify your negative thinking triggers. What sends your thinking into a spiral of negativity? Does seeing your friends going on great nights out on Facebook make you feel inadequate? Or perhaps you have some people in your life who are negative and that brings you down. It could even be the news on the TV before bedtime that send you to bed feeling unsettled or bad. Once you know your triggers you can avoid them or cut down on them.

If something bad happens during the day, talk it though with someone before going to bed.When we sleep our brains lay down memories so if we go to sleep still disturbed by someone’s criticism or the little mishap we had our minds code it in as "very bad" which makes it more likely to haunt us in the future. Debriefing it with someone can help us make more sense of it and code it more appropriately.

Distraction. If it often easier to do something new than to stop doing something, so if you feel yourself getting drawn into unhelpful thinking patterns, distract by focusing on something else, even singing a song or making a cup of tea. This interrupts your mind’s learned thinking patterns which, over time, will generate a new more supportive habit.

Create a more helpful ways of tell yourself off when you’ve made a mistake or got something wrong. Beating yourself up only makes you feel bad. Making mistakes is an important learning opportunity, but learning doesn’t come from bad feelings. Create some appropriate comments to say to yourself. Examples people have come up with are ‘Great one’, ‘Fantastic’ or ‘Genius’ – all said with a hint of humour. Or you could try little phrases like ‘well that wasn’t great’ or even make up your own meaningless phrase.

When it comes to our thinking habits, the language and tone of voice we use in our internal speech is critical. We hope these tips have been useful – think well…

Ready to find out more?

Download our free guide on Goal Setting that Works. It will help you to program yourself for success and overcome blocks along the way.

Interested in finding out more on how we think, communicate and process? Download our free guide The Power of Your Senses which takes you through one of the key components of NLP and shows you how to put it to good use.

Come to one of our Introductions to Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) with NLP Master Trainers Karen Meager and John McLachlan. These are Saturday morning workshops in both Bristol and Scotland and are held throughout the year. For the latest dates find out more here.

Karen Meager

Founder of Monkey Puzzle and an INLPTA NLP Master Trainer, Karen is also a UKCP registered Psychotherapist and author of the award winning book Real Leaders for the Real World. Her new book Time Mastery; Banish Time Management Forever is out now.

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