Inner Voice IV


Part IV of a series on Empowering Language Patterns:

Get rid of the word “TRY” in your vocabulary. “Try” pre-frames going through the motions. It gives us not only permission to fail but permission to exert efforts of far less than 100%.

Quit using the word CAN’T or add to the word can’t…“do it yet” which shifts it to the place of possibilities instead of no possibility. Ask yourself …What would happen if I could? What will happen when I do? This will shift the negative limiting belief as you visualize or imagine!

STAY AWAY FROM GENERALIZATIONS – they are all lies… “always” and “never” “hardly ever” are absolutes that only exist in our mind. Generalizations discount our belief in our personal possibilities. They also undercut our faith in humanity and the power to change and grow.

Remove the word “DON’T” from our speech patterns, because whatever happens next in the sentence comes across as a command to “do it”   Example, “Don’t stop” “Don’t tell” “Don’t eat the cake” This is literally how our brain functions. Our brain dysfunctions in regular patterns. We fool our brain all the time and it fools us!

Examples of brain dysfunction:

  • Negative hallucinations – (not seeing , hearing or feeling what is there) Honey, where are the keys. What did you do with the keys?
  • Positive hallucinations – (seeing, hearing or feeling what is not real) imagine someone is talking about us…. imagine the boogie man under the bed.
  • Time distortions – The three hours waiting in line at the bank was really 30 minutes, or the 5 hours at the wonderful party seemed like 30 minutes.

“The fact that we already fool ourselves, means we are capable of doing it in a positive way. We already have these skills, we just need to use them to our benefit.”


Inner Voice III


Part III of a series on Empowering Language Patterns:

Get rid of the word SHOULD.

Using statements like I should meditate…. solicit guilt, rebelliousness and maybe even shame…Thoughts like “Dammit why didn’t I, I was supposed to!!” soon follow. These shame and fear based thought patterns do not take you to a powerful place, but often undermine motivation and positive intentions/thinking.

Find another word that elicits better responses:

Wish – won’t motivate most people

I would like to – nope won’t bring urgency

I need to – not quite there to bring about action

I want to – getting closer to a commitment

I have to – to authoritarian for most (defensiveness and rebellion follow)

I must – sounds too desperate

I am going to – will work for some.. gives me a way out…

I will – a personal agreement is made…much closer to getting me to do it (I can visualize it and imagine myself doing it, and based on that feeling and imagery I actually may do it!)

Another powerful method is to take what you want to do and turn it into an action verb.

“I am meditating tomorrow morning at 7 AM”.     This should cause you to imagine not only doing it but the positive feeling, results, and benefits of doing it.

Questions: Do I see myself doing it in a certain place? Is it a movie, a video or a still picture? If it is a still picture, then I want to find better wording!  I am meditating tonight! Turns it into a video clip. You can play with words and get it into a vibrant, colorful movie which will flow ( a little short movie) – chances are that you are 10 times more likely to do it. An emotional/physical state of being shift actually occurs and you can see the benefits of what you will gain from that, and then make a decision or commitment to do it.. The more detail to your imagery and the deeper you see, hear, feel, taste, and smell the difference the more energy you will have in your motivation to take action.

We do this from the negative side too creating negative video tapes…but the more positive imagery tapes we make to offset the negative the more empowered we will be to take right actions!

Inner Voice II

redrockheader5Part II of a series on Empowering Language Patterns:

Get rid of the word “BUT”

But….used in the most common way, negates the positive that came before!! (Thank you for getting the groceries, but you forgot the milk.) It stops the brain then restarts the new statement leaving the prior portion of the message unheard – alone (in the dust)….the brain moves on to what follows the but. So, only use but to turn a negative into the positive (I know you wrecked the car but at least you did not get injured).

You can substitute the word “and” & “however” for but and it minimizes the damage caused by the negation (I went shopping at the health food store and on the way home I ate a Big Mac.). Think of how that sentence would feel with the word but instead of and. This helps us be more positive, resourceful and more motivated. An example would be (You did better on your grades this semester however there is room for improvement in math).   You did “x” for me and you forgot “y” (keeps the sentence continuous and the full message unit stays intact. The word but turns it into a more negative message unit going to your subconscious since the part after but is what is encoded).

Speaking this way with ourselves is kinder and gentler and it lays the foundation to speak the same with others.

A way to even enhance this speech pattern change is using the sandwich effect. This is sandwiching any negative or paternal statement in between two positives (Positive/Negative(Correction)/Positive). It helps us abstain from the defensiveness and packages the negatives with a positive feeling. This pattern would go something like this (It was great I did Yoga this morning, however I need to do it several times a week. Since in the past I practiced Yoga on a daily basis with such great results that means I can do it again starting with that class today.).

Empowering language patterns for ourselves and others;-)