Limiting Poisoning Perceptions

By Kim Banting,

When it comes to balancing hormones, stress is a huge component.  (Do I sound like a broken record yet?)  One of the most difficult aspects of stress is our perception of the world around us.  The more negative our view, the more difficult it is for us to turn off the stress hormones that are affecting our health.  According to Go Big Coach Kristen Howe, these thoughts are called poisoned perceptions.

So, what is a poisoned perception?  Basically, when you have negative expectations – your actions support these and then the negative expectations are realized.

A couple of years ago I was working with a client who wasn’t sleeping and it was affecting her energy and mood.  When I looked at her food journal I noticed that she was consuming quite a bit of sugar and drinking up to 5 alcoholic drinks some days and had very few alcohol-free days.  She was really insistent that she wanted a solution that didn’t require her to stop drinking.  While she was making efforts to eat healthier substitutions for her sugary foods, she would message me with quite a bit of frustration about it and complain that it doesn’t taste the way she wanted it to.  She even told me that she didn’t think her sugar or alcohol consumption was contributing to her insomnia.  The whole process of working with me caused her to be bitter and resentful and she stopped coming to see me and her sleep issues didn’t get resolved.

Thinking this way means that you are always focused on what is going to be wrong as opposed to seeing what could be right.  Call it an energetic mismatch for achieving your desired outcome.  Essentially you become a magnet for failure.

You have probably heard this before.  The answer, as I am also sure you have heard, is to change your thought patterns and beliefs.  But the issue with this is that when you feel down, when you are feeling insecure about the challenges you have created for yourself or when you are just feeling fearful – how do you possibly feel positive and create new patterns of thinking?  We are creatures of habit and our subconscious mind is at the wheel and making decisions for us based on our early programing.  If we have not had the experience of the positive outcome – how do we change our thoughts?

The answer comes in two forms.  The first is finding the courage to take a risk.  Choose a goal that you are pretty certain you can achieve.  The best way to build confidence is to succeed and a small task that you know you can handle, is the best way to do this.  The small tasks can be anything that lead to achieving bigger goals but instead of being overwhelmed by the size of the big goals, focus on what you can do now, in order to move toward achieving a big goal.  For example, if you want to start eating better, rather than overhauling your entire diet all at once, begin with breakfast.  Make a list of some healthy breakfast foods you think you will enjoy and commit to eating a good breakfast every morning until it becomes habitual.

Gradually learn to increase the size of the task or the nature of the task.  Ie: once you have your breakfasts down, start to look at your lunches.  Ask yourself: Can I handle this and be okay if it does not succeed?  As long as the answer is yes you can move forward.  If you feel the failure is no big deal – then you have nothing to fear and if the control of the task is yours, then you also have no fear that you need to rely on someone else to make it happen for you.  Remember that failing at the little tasks does not mean you have failed at the big goal.  It is just a piece of the plan.  I always remind myself that the only true failure is to not try at all.

The second element that can be helpful is letting go of the past.  Think of today as ground zero.  The past does not exist. When old thought patterns creep into your mind, tell yourself “today I start at zero”.  There will be many days where you are starting at zero again.  Depending on how bad your past is, you may want to consider doing this with the help of a professional counselor.  Overtime, this process will gradually quiet the ghosts from the past.

Consider this as you are contemplating your life and what it will take to achieve your goals.  What is your mind-set?  Do you engage in negative self-talk and what can you do about it?  Don’t try to take on too much and keep the tasks small to build your confidence.  It’s the journey, not the destination that counts.

Whole Health and Happiness,

Kim Banting