If you can’t choose the positive, at least dismiss the negative.

In a world where “gratitude” and “positive thinking” are considered the tried and true path to happiness, it is easy to want to punch those words (and the people who might be saying them) in the face when you have had a bad day/week/year – especially when it comes to our commitments to ourselves to live healthier lifestyles.

It might sound harsh, but I know I have been there.

Because sometimes life happens and we got off track in ways that we didn’t necessarily plan or anticipate.

Sometimes we miss a workout because an emergency came up at work – 4 days in a row. Or because Netflix sounded like a much, much better idea.

Sometimes we find ourselves 3/4 of the way through an entire chocolate cake. Or the whole way through a bag of chips. Or 4 (+) glasses of wine into an impromptu happy hour.

And then…

Then you wake up bloated/uncomfortable/hungover/5 pounds heavier a few days later. You wake up angry at yourself for wanting to do one thing and doing the opposite. You have disappointed yourself so badly that you can’t imagine possibly ever NOT disappointing yourself and figuring you might as well give up right now. You call yourself so many bad names that you have dug your way into a major funk.

Needless to say at that moment when you are checking in and taking account of what is going on in and around you at these moments you probably aren’t feeling super eager to scream “I am AWESOME” on the top of your lungs or

“I’m so grateful for this learning experience!”

Because sometimes a positive thought pattern can’t just be “switched on.”

And that’s okay!

But it also doesn’t mean that you can’t stop the name calling and self hatred in it’s tracks BEFORE you are ready to guide yourself back towards a more positive outlook.

Because even if you can’t find the positive in the moment, you sure as heck CAN shut down the negative self-chatter.

And I mean right away. Shut it down. Hear the voice of failure and self-loathing? Shush it up. Put it in time out.

You don’t need to scream over it with “positive thoughts” quite yet, just let it spend some time in silence.

To be clear, I am not talking about shutting down your emotions, just the name calling and unfair generalizations you are making about your self worth in an emotionally charged situation.

Only after you have stopped it dead in it’s tracks can you proceed towards nurturing your mindset back towards the positive and exploring what is REALLY going on with you.

Here are a few tips for navigating through this process:

1) Find a quiet and safe space to actually let yourself feel your emotions & get in touch with what is “really” going on.

It’s okay to let yourself feel sad/disappointed/angry! Let yourself feel it for what it is, but don’t judge it or call it bad names.

2) If you find yourself battling it out to keep the negative thoughts at bay, take your time.

Silence the negative chatter but allow yourself space if you aren’t quite ready to choose the positive yet. This can take minutes, days, weeks, YEARS sometimes. Just commit to “getting there” as soon as you are able.

3) When you are ready, let yourself reflect.

Explore what aspects of your life might be off kilter (again, don’t judge, just reflect and explore) and what might need some adjustment from you to improve your reactions and ability to be more mindful. i.e Did you skimp on sleep 3 nights in a row? Skip meals? Overindulge in sugar over the weekend? React to something that happened at work by eating emotionally? Engage in too much negative self-talk that you convinced yourself to sabotage your efforts?

4) Start small and begin to walk yourself through the physical motions it takes to get yourself feeling better physically and emotionally that you know work for you.

For example: Getting a good nights rest, hanging out with your partner/kids/pet/friend, drinking a big glass of water, working out, doing some healthy food preparation. Allow the physical actions to guide you back towards feeling better and reflecting where you want to be. Don’t overcommit to huge goals to punish yourself – keep it simple, basic, and feeling good.

5) Start paying extra attention to being mindful of those qualities that make you awesome, all that is good in your life, and each step you are taking towards taking care of yourself – no matter how big or small they are.

Start small if you have to. Watch as positivity seeps back in and grows organically simply by continuing to step forward each day.

Hopefully before you know it you are feeling better and more balanced each day. 🙂

Save the Date! The 40-Day Focus is BACK.

Due to popular demand, I am thrilled to announce that the Fall 40-Day Focus, my signature group coaching program, will be starting up on September 14th!

I will be sending out more information next week, but for those of you who are ready to commit and refocus this fall,

I am offering a special early bird offer! The first 5 people who register for the program will also receive 1 extra 30 minute private coaching session with me to be used at the time of their choosing (before, during, after the program – it’s up to you!). This early bird offer will ONLY Be good through this Labor Day Weekend and I know they are going to fill up fast so get ’em now!

Sign up now to get that extra session. It will be first come, first serve!

Questions? Email me at jen@coachingbyjennifer.com

xx jen

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