Day 9: Gotcha!
Day 9: Gotcha!
To change an unwanted habit, you have to first notice when you're doing it. Negative thoughts, or really, thoughts we have that bring uncomfortable emotions (shame, guilt, envy, personal jabs) are common to everyone. Negative thoughts related to your body can feel very painful because we associate our inner thoughts with the world's thoughts. We allow for these thoughts to keep us stuck in place, never trying, and keeping your happiness held hostage.
Negative thoughts do not have to be the normal way you see yourself or your body. It's mostly a habit formed for many years, and negative thoughts can be transformed into more positive ones. This activity will help you learn the very useful skill of flagging unwanted thoughts.
The first step to stopping negative thoughts is catching yourself in the act. Today, when a negative thought comes up into your head, you're going to say out loud (or to yourself too) "Gotcha!" Share with the group one or two of your "gotcha!" moments.
I do this. Yes, even out loud when I'm alone! This single habit of calling out my negative thoughts has changed my mindset in more than just my body, but in many other areas of my life too.
It will take a few practices to get the hang of it, but your mind will begin to make a subtle shift into something called "observer mode" when you do more of "Gotcha!", meaning, you become better able to watch your thoughts as they arise instead of just reacting and believing them off the bat. This is a practice related to mindfullness, the art of paying attention to what's going on, and it can help you feel more grounded and focused overtime.
It might help to keep a track of your "gotcha moments" so you can notice patterns. What seems to be a theme? How are they connected in some way? Later this week, we'll work on what to do with negative thoughts once you've caught them.