I believe that at some point in many of our lives most of us have struggled with negative self talk and self doubt which originates in the mind. The mind is a very powerful tool which sends signals to our body indicating the needed responses. For example let's look at a lesson from exercise science. If a person were asked to move a specific weighted load the brain would send a message to the muscles indicating the required muscle contraction needed to move the weight. In the same way, when there are goals before us in life the mind comes into play. The “I CAN” mentality signals one to plan and dream and motivates the body to act. In the face of obstacles, the “I CAN” mentality taps into creativity and resourcefulness to overcome the obstacles. Negative self talk and an “I CAN'T" attitude signals one to focus on all the obstacles, cling to fear, and tells the body no to react.
Let me share with you how this played out in real life. Recently while coaching a girl’s running program the group’s goal was for everyone to complete 3 miles. One girl in particular believed that she could not meet this goal. As she ran she said these words over and over “I can’t.” As you can imagine, each time she said that she couldn't, she didn't. She stopped running and slumped along. I noticed the cycle so went to run alongside her. Then the words came again, “I can’t.” So I set goals for her and told her that we had to break the mindset because at that point I knew it had nothing to do with her athletic ability, but her mind. She had been infected with a mind virus which spread to her entire body! I stayed along to encourage her and push her forward a little. Once we stopped for water, I told her a story about my daughter who had turned her own “I can’t” into “I can”. In short, my daughter went from crying “I can’t” to running full speed screaming ‘I can.”
The story was quite amusing for the girl in my group. She shrugged it off and ran along; however before she left I set a goal for her to run a portion of the field, take a brief walk, and then run the final stretch. After she took off I went to take pictures of the rest of the team. I noticed that she was sticking to the plan and I was glad. Then something remarkable happened, she turned the corner for her last stretch and screamed out “I CAN DO IT!” Then I let out the loudest “YES!” that I could find within me. Not only did she discover that she could do it, she finished her goal running!
What is it in your life that you need to look at head on and scream “I CAN DO IT!”