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Overcoming self-defeat. A hockey lesson for life.




I spend a lot of time at the rink these days, with two kids having practices or games almost all days of the week.  

 

There are many important life lessons to be gleaned over the course of the season. 

 

For example, the other night my daughter thought she played poorly in a scrimmage and that she let her team down.   By the next day, the self-defeat spiraled. She questioned how she made the team and furthermore, if she should quit hockey altogether!  


The human brain, if left unchecked, will go down these dark rabbit holes and leave us feeling like we are the absolute worst!


Because the human brain is like velcro for the negative and teflon for the positive, we need to check in for truth. 

 

While my daughter was so focused on everything she did wrong, she had no space to think about anything she had done right.  The evidence she chose to look for was “I suck”.   If you look hard enough for “I suck”, you'll find it.   

 

What she had forgotten was how much progress she had made in the season, how great she had gotten at breaking up plays and defending the goal and also that a few days earlier she was named “player of the game” as her team worked their way to win a championship!

 

What are examples of how you've harped on what you've done wrong instead of right?  What has your inner critic chirped in your ear when you make a mistake?  “I can't do anything right”,  “They'll find me out” or “I should just quit” ring a bell? 

 

What's the consequence of thinking negatively?  Negative thoughts create negative feelings, actions and results.  It makes the problem worse and turns a painful incident into unnecessary suffering and less than optimal results.  

 

So when you're in this cycle, how do you turn it around?  

 

Turning it around starts with awareness and ends with a choice.   

 

Be aware of what you're thinking and how it makes you feel.  Then ask yourself, Is it true?  Is it always true?  Hint:  Usually you can poke holes in your “truth”, so where is the evidence that it's not true? 

 

Once you find evidence of something more positive about yourself that you truly believe, make a choice to keep that as a replacement  thought.  It will make you feel better and propel you into more productive action moving forward. 

 

In my daughter's case, when I questioned if it was always true (I suck),  she acknowledged it's not always true.  She came to the realization that she  just had a bad night, she has progressed in the season and is contributing to her team.  She felt more empowered with the positive thoughts she chose which resulted in playing better in the games that followed! 

 

Bottom line:  You don't always choose your first thought, but you can choose your second.  Be aware and choose wisely for better results in your life and your business.  


If you're stuck in the cycle of negative thoughts and can't get unstuck, I can help you. Take a step toward overcoming self-defeat and moving toward what you really want in life by scheduling a complimentary conversation with me here: https://calendly.com/lauramcgillcoaching/45-60-minute-coaching-session

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