Ask her – Journaling Practice #1

One of my biggest fears when I want to move forward on a big goal, something that takes me way out of my comfort zone is that I don’t know what to do.

I don’t know how to move forward. I don’t know what steps to take. I’m afraid to make mistakes and go about things the wrong way.

One of the most effective ways to get guidance or clarity is to ask my future self. I know it sounds a little strange, how can you ask your future self a question? .

Think about it this way. We’ve all heard of the practice of writing a letter to our younger selves with advice. Things we wish we knew when we were younger, things not to worry about, things not to take for granted. .

We can all relate to thinking about to a younger version of ourselves. How  about relating to a future version of ourselves that’s already got it all figured out? .

Through the practice of yoga nidra  and sankalpa (sacred intention), I was introduced to the concept that I already have everything within me I need to achieve what I want to achieve, or change what I want to change. .

By entertaining that concept, that the change I want to make is available to me, I can open up to new ways of thinking, behaving and living. I can see pathways that were always there but closed off to me by ingrained habits and thoughts. .

Think about it this way. There are people out there who have already achieved your goal, or something close to it. For example’s sake, let’s say you want to lose 35lbs. There are people there who have done it.

What are those people like? Fitness is a habit. They made sustainable changes to their diet. They are in good shape. They have more confidence. They have more experience, more knowledge in what worked for them and what didn’t. They’re more resilient. They made themselves a priority, they made exercising a priority, they made eating well a priority. They’ve overcome the fears and obstacles that held them back in the past.

In order for you to join the ranks of someone who has lost 35lbs and keep it off, that’s what you need to become. See yourself as that person. Feel what it would feel like. What would your day look like?

It’s obviously different than where you are now. You would be living, thinking and behaving in ways that are different than how you lived, thought and behaved gaining the weight and keeping it on.

When we look at it from a perspective of ‘here I am now and I have to get there.’ We can come up with fears, insecurities and problems. We can get frustrated by our rate or progress or ‘falling off the wagon’. .
When we are looking at it from the future, where we’ve already achieved the goal solutions are more obvious. It’s easier to be more gentle and kind with ourselves. .
In the exact same way that you would be kind and understanding if you were helping a friend or a family member achieve a goal or learn something new, your future self can show you a kinder path to the goal you want to achieve. You would already know the way and you’d support and  guide them through it.

By taking a step outside of your current perspective, and coming at it from a place of it already being achieved, or from a wiser, more experienced version of yourself you get a big picture view. When you are coming from a place of ‘It’s already done.’ So much of the stress and pressure drops away.

Action Steps
✴Spend a little time dreaming about your goal, your future, what it would feel like, how your day would be different, how your habits would be different, how your thoughts would be different.

✴Write down your goal. I like to start with a summarizing statement and then flesh it out: I want to lose 35 lbs.
.
I want to be 35lbs lighter. I want to be fit and strong. I want to love exercise and eating well. I want it to be a habit, a lifestyle, things I do without even thinking about it.

✴Ask your future self for advice. Let it come naturally. I usually write something like this:

Future Fit Nicole, I’m struggling and afraid of failure. I want to lose 35lbs. I want to be like you. What advice or guidance can you give me?

I’m so in the space of already there, that is just comes out:

Baby, you’ve got to fall in love with moving your body. I’m at a point where exercising is like brushing my teeth. Just like you can’t stand the fuzzy teeth feeling in the morning, I can’t stand having tight, constricted muscles. I need to move!

Your progress won’t be linear. It never is. Give yourself a tonne of love and grace as you make changes to your diet. This is not a quick fix. This is the rest of your life. Make food choices that feel good and not restrictive.

The most important thing is that you don’t ever stop. There is no ‘on the wagon’ or ‘off  the wagon’. It’s your life. Make your focus on consistency in exercise and eating habits.

Get ready for your life to change. In order to make room for exercise  and preparing nutritious foods, other things will have to take less priority. Establish and protect boundaries around your new habits and priorities. Old habits, commitments, expectations will pop up but you are strong enough to stay committed to your  new goal.

It’ll take longer than you expect. You’ll spend a lot of time in ‘two steps forward and one step back’ especially at the beginning. Over time, as your new lifestyle is established it’ll get easier. You’ll see more progress and you’ll wonder how you ever lived any other way. You will be so grateful that you started and you didn’t give up.

I love you. I believe in you and I’ve always got your back. There is always a way if you are willing to look for it.

See how powerful that is? See how much better than is than making a plan of ‘I’ll exercise 4x a week and eat salads for lunch. I’ll follow all these inspiring IG accounts toget me through the tough times.’

By accessing a future self that’s already achieved your goal, you are trying new self off. The more time you can spend journaling, thinking, feeling, embodying the version of you that has achieved the goal, the easier it is to achieve.
✴You build new neural pathways
✴You can think, act and live from the place of already achieved
✴You are in touch with your why, your purpose, your motivation
✴By coming from a place of already achieved, you have an advantage, extra confidence. It’s like mentally having the upper hand in any situation.

✴What the thinker thinks, the prover proves
✴By writing down your goal, you are 42% more likely to achieve it

Let me know if you try this out! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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