A new way to say no

So many people come to me and talk about not being able to either set goals or achieve what they want to.

So, the question that I ask, is “what do you want?”

It is the best question that you can honestly ask of anyone.  It is such a simple question and sometimes it is a very easy and simple response.  To a hungry person, this question will invariably invoke a response about food.

However, if you are asking this question in the right context then the answer can tell you a lot about someone’s subconscious mind and how it is operating.

A person who is trying to lose weight for example, is asked this question. Their response is, “I want to eat something”  When then they are put in front of two food options, one a healthy option and another a fast, but less healthy option, what is the most likely response?  Of course, to go to the fast and less healthy response.  Why? Because  mostly, this has been habit and everyone hates saying no to themselves and anyone else for that matter!

So, The key to the question “What do you want” is more about what do they want, then really probing to find out whether that is the most important thing they want or whether this is something else that is more important.

Then, it is about asking the person, “how do you think that this can happen?”  Putting that framework in someone’s mind is already having them start to problem solve to achieve what they want to.  So, if the person wants to lose 20kg and they identify that by not eating fast food is a way to do this, try to get the person to rephrase this, to direct them to exactly what food source they should be utilising is a much better way of having this framed in your mind.  Instead of telling yourself what NOT to do, you re going to tell yourself what TO do.  You are putting a positive frame around something that could be perceived as a negative.

If you tell someone “Don’t do …” then what usually happens?  They do it, either to try or because they are thinking about doing it even though you have told them not to do it!  If you put a positive statement in there instead and say “Please DO …. ” then you are just as likely to get something positive done rather than doing what they were not meant to.

So… what to take away from this?

1. What do you really want?  Write this down. Be specific and talk about why you want it, what you might feel when you get what you want and how it will benefit you.

2. Then, can you think of anything bigger, or more important than this that you really want?  Write it down and repeat this process until you cannot think of anything MORE important.

3. Then, how might you achieve or get what you want?  Write down the first 3 steps to achieving what you want.

4. If you think it is going to take longer than 3 months to get what you want, break it down into 3-4 steps over 2-3 month intervals.  This way, you are creating yourself a stepping stone approach to getting what you want.

5. Make your actions in line with what your newly created goals are.  If you are trying to lose weight for instance and you say that to do that you should eat just one sandwich for lunch, then do not be tempted by hot chips.  Your choice will be for the one sandwich, as that is in line with the goal you have set yourself.  You are not saying no to the chips.  You are saying yes to the one sandwich.  Remember, you wrote it down, this is what you want, the outcome of losing 10kg for example!

Say yes to what want.  Do not bother with no!

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