Your Self Talk Matters: How the Gym Helped Me Find My Blindspot

When’s the last time you checked in with your self-talk? I can’t believe that going to the gym helped me find my blindspot in my self-talk game.

How often do you actually pay attention to the things you’re thinking about yourself?

We have more than 60,000 thoughts a day that are driving our emotions, which dictate our behavior, which creates our results in life.

Your self talk matters.

The sooner you can become the observer the sooner you can make true, lasting, sustainable change in your life.

Garbage Thoughts About My Physical Capabilities

I’ve never thought of myself as an athletic person. A gym person. A fit person. A physically strong person.

I’ve grown to this point in my life with some really shitty perceptions about my physical prowess…and struggling with a debilitating chronic illness didn’t help that one single bit – it further reinforced some really shitty perceptions I had about my physical body and even added some more limitations on to that.

I’ve realized that some of the biggest mindset work I’ll be doing moving forward revolves around my physical capabilities and how I perceive my body.

But when I get real quiet and honest with myself, I am pretty fucking strong.

I have endured a ridiculous amount of physical pain and come out on the other side of it.

When my body was screaming for me to slow down and heal, I finally heard it and did the work… but outside of taking that time to slow down my body has always lived up to the physical demands I have put upon it.

This past summer I recommitted to taking care of myself first. And I knew that I needed to start hitting the gym, not just to lose weight but to honor myself in mind, body and spirit. 

Becoming Aware of My Self Talk…the Unhealthy Chatter

After a few weeks I realized that I had horrible self talk related to exercise and the gym.

I had this terrible mantra on repeat in my head, not quite conscious at first…pushing through the reps, doing each exercise I began to hear it – and it wasn’t even a whisper, it was a great big loud scream in my mind – how had I not been hearing it?

“I can’t do this. I’m so tired. I don’t have any energy. This hurts so much. I can’t last to the final rep. It’s okay to stop now, you did some of it. OMG YOU MIGHT DIE IF YOU KEEP GOING!”

Holy self-sabotage batman.  What kind of self talk is that?!?   

I wasn’t hearing it because it was the soundtrack for all of the physical activity I had probably ever done. I had tuned it out, but it was always there, always holding me back.

But awareness is key, because once you know something you can either decide to ignore it or you can change it.

How I’m Changing My Relationship with the Gym…and Myself

So I decided to be intentional and more aware of the things I was telling myself. To commit to improving my self talk in this part of my life too (because, let’s get real, it didn’t just stay in the gym). 

I started repeating “I am strong” during my intervals.

It’s crazy how much more powerful and capable I feel. How much easier it is to get through the exercise.

I recently added a few more mantras to the mix: “I am strong. I am healthy. I am fit. I have infinite energy.”

And I know it worked.

The day I added to my mantra, the circuit I completed at the gym that day had the same exercise at the beginning and the end.

When I started I wasn’t thinking about my mindset…I realized that I was tired and I was choosing to let it affect me.

But by the second time around I had started playing that mantra on repeat in my head. And I more than doubled my output at the very end of my workout.

What you tell yourself matters. What you think drives what you feel which impacts your behavior and the results you get. Check your self talk before you wreck yourself. 

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