Ep 70: Three practical ways to believe in yourself

, , ,


So many songs and movies preach the virtues of believing in yourself. But what does believing in yourself look like?

I think our idea of belief in what we can do has been a little hijacked by hero movies. Learn some practical ways to believe in yourself that doesn’t require big life moments.

You can listen to this episode right here! 👆

And don’t forget to subscribe to hear future episodes of Mental Health Moment wherever you are! 

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.

 





Full transcript 👇

Career woman with superhero silhouetted behind her

Hi I’m Lori Miller and this is your Mental Health Moment.

How many times since kindergarten have you heard that in order to succeed you just have to believe in yourself?

We have no shortage of success stories today of people who did just that. If we believe the movie versions of these stories, we may think that believing in yourself is a one time thing that happens in a grand life moment with a John Williams soundtrack playing in the background.

Last weekend at my church, our pastor talked about the movie “42,” a recent biographical film about the great Jackie Robinson, the first African-American baseball player in the major leagues.

  • Who knew more about the struggle to achieve a goal and persevere more than Jackie Robinson?
  • Who needed the power of believing in yourself more than him?

He was faced with a monumental task during a time when racism in the U.S. was still very much front and center.

There are certainly many lessons to be drawn from his experience, about the power of conviction and belief in something greater than you.

There are some very emotional moments in this inspiring movie, and you will want to clap at the end.

But I think sometimes we use this same hero-style movie template and try to apply it to how we can achieve our goals in life.

I don’t know about you, but most of the time my life doesn’t move to a great soundtrack.

I mean, I’ve had a few pivotal moments of empowering belief here and there, but they’re mostly punctuated by more routine things like unloading the dishwasher and picking up deli chicken for dinner.

There are no movies about that.

The reality is that believing in yourself is not really an event you can point back to.

It’s a series of actions that you take over and over and over again. And when you’re tired of doing that, guess what?

You get to just keep doing those actions over and over and over again.

This is what makes success so hard.

Because you still have to move and take action even when you don’t feel any particular inspiring feeling or motivation.

Like Jackie Robinson, you just keep showing up at the plate, no matter what happens or what you hear going on around you.

When you struggle with achieving something new for yourself, like learning to handle your anxiety for example, the habits and forces that have kept that problem in place will fight tooth and nail to keep you from believing in yourself.

You may say out loud that you’re going to conquer this thing, but the working part of this show is in how you live this out in your actions every day.

Not just in your declarations to yourself with your fist raised to the sky.

Believing in yourself is about showing up every day for yourself.

But we find all kinds of ways to shatter that belief, don’t we?

  • We let defeating self talk steal the scene inside our heads.
  • We allow second rate characters who have nothing invested in us to tear apart the fibers of our belief.
  • And we let fear become the villain that keeps us from challenging our beliefs about what we can do.

Somewhere in there our daily script has to change in some actionable ways.

Here are a few things you can consider while you set about believing in yourself.

First, focus on making your thoughts work for you.

You’ve heard me talk about this before, this isn’t having positive thoughts. I’m not against positive thoughts. But you need thoughts that help you create the next step for yourself instead of just making you feel good about yourself.

You need adaptive thoughts.

“I am awesome I’ve got this,” becomes “I’ve been here before and I’ve demonstrated that I can handle it. I have what I need to do it again.”

This kind of thinking helps you bridge yourself to the next step you need to take and gives you a little prescription to follow.

Second, qualify the feedback that you get from others, even if you asked for that feedback.

How much has this person invested in your success? What does it mean for them if you succeed or if you fail?

Use the feedback that helps you take specific steps to get to your goal.

Don’t feel obligated to take advice just because it was offered. And don’t NOT take good feedback to heart just because it wasn’t your idea, if that makes sense.

Consider it all, but at the end of the day you have to be the one to believe that those actions will get you where you want to go.

Lastly, challenge yourself but do it in believable ways.

Nothing crushes your belief in yourself more than setting an unreasonable challenge in front of you.

I know, I know we’re always being challenged to step outside of our comfort zone. But if you are afraid of heights, jumping out of an airplane is not stepping out of your comfort zone. That’s just crazy.

You may believe you can fly and you may believe you can touch the sky, 🎵 but you’re going to blow yourself out in the process.

Instead, go up to the top story of a multi-story building and see how you feel about that. Then go from there.

Start with things that you know will be difficult but that you can actually picture yourself doing in the moment.

I’m raising my hand on this one, because I love to set huge goals for myself. But I’ve learned through the years to temper that a bit with what can really be done with the resources I have now and the steps that I can easily take in this moment.

If I have lost belief in myself in the past, it’s usually wrapped around goals that were just too much for me at the time.

So if you’ve been keeping score at home, believing in yourself is not an event but a process.

A process that you work day in and day out.

The inspiration comes not when you knock it out of the park, but when you look back and see how far you’ve come.

Now you’ve demonstrated to yourself that you have what it takes, which empowers you to believe in yourself to keep moving.

You’ve just proven to yourself that you can do it.

Now just keep doing that.

You can catch episodes of Mental Health Moment by visiting mymentalhealthmoment.com. Don’t forget to subscribe to Mental Health Moment on Amazon Alexa, Apple podcast, Google podcast and Spotify. Just search for “Mental Health Moment with Lori Miller.”

If you want Mental Health Moment delivered right to your inbox, visit mymentalhealthmoment.com to sign up to get these delivered to your email every day.

If you’re STILL wanting for more, you can find articles and videos about stress and mental health, by visiting my website at LoriMiller.me.

Thanks for listening!

I’d love to hear what you think!

  • Leave a note below or ask me a question in the comment section below.
  • Share this episode on Pinterest, Facebook, and LinkedIn .

Help spread the message about good mental health!

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.

 




Ep 69: Pear trees in Tulsa

, , , ,


You don’t know how much you’ve grown until you have to step up and do something useful. Here’s a little lesson about growth from two little pear trees in Tulsa, OK.

You can listen to this episode right here! 👆

And don’t forget to subscribe to hear future episodes of Mental Health Moment wherever you are! 

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.

 





Full transcript 👇

Ep 69: Pear Trees in Tulsa

I don’t think these trees are in Tulsa, but you get the idea. 😜

Hi. I’m Lori Miller and this is your Mental Health Moment.

The first house my husband and I lived in was in Tulsa, OK. It was a small house, just a smidge less than 1,000 square feet, but it had pretty much what we needed at the time as a young dual income, no kids couple.

There were a couple of floor to ceiling windows on the front of the house that let in some nice light. They were my favorite because they made the house feel bigger than it was. So I was always pulling the shades up.

While those windows were the house’s best feature, in the afternoon they were the absolute worst feature.

You see, the front part of the house faced the west, which means we got some brutal sun and heat in the afternoon — right in those windows. If you’ve experienced Midwest summer heat you know what I’m talking about.

The best shades and blinds were no match for the hellish heat waves coming through that glass. In the afternoon I felt like Woody in Toy Story under Sid’s magnifying glass. It was a real bear cooling that house in the summer.

When we first moved in, we noticed two, awkward young trees planted in the front yard.

Two non-fruit-bearing pear trees I was told.

I couldn’t imagine why you would not want pears from your pear tree. I’m guessing maybe the landlord didn’t want the mess from uncollected ripe fruit.

Anyway, these two little guys were planted about 20 feet apart from each other. They weren’t impressive in any way and to be honest, they were pretty scrawny.

They offered no protection from anything really, you couldn’t sit under them, and honestly they weren’t even that pretty. And apparently they weren’t going to even produce any pears.

But they did grow.

Pear trees in my Tulsa yard

Sadly, this is the only picture of the little pear trees from those days. There’s another little tree just 20 feet to the right. This picture was taken about year three or four. Check out me and my pickup truck! 

Not quickly mind you, but you could see some new growth every year. And they did withstand the weight of Oklahoma ice storms.

So while they were unimpressive and kind of useless in their non-fruit-bearing state, they were hardy.

They became such a part of our yard that honestly I didn’t notice them too much anymore.

I think one year we hung some Christmas ornaments from the branches but that’s about it.

But over time, their canopies did slowly start to fill in and they took on a healthy roundness.

We had lived there about seven years, and I had now taken on a healthy roundness of my own. I was pregnant with our son.

One afternoon I was so exhausted I remember laying down on the couch for just a few minutes. I realized that I should probably close the blinds before I fell asleep so I wouldn’t wake up in the blistering heat. But I was just too exhausted to get up again, so I drifted off.

I woke up about an hour later to hear the sounds of sweet birds singing in those two trees. I laid there on my pillow and peacefully watched the branches sway back and forth in the wind. It was all very nice and Little House on the Prairie.

And suddenly it hit me.

Holy cow, there’s SHADE coming in the window.

The sun was completely blocked! I wasn’t sweating or anything.

After all those years, the canopies of those two trees had finally grown together to form a complete block against the sun coming in those windows.

Our little trees had matured to the point that they were now… useful.

The process of slow, steady growth that we didn’t even really notice that much had ushered those trees into a new phase that didn’t even seem palatable seven years ago.

But just because we couldn’t see their growth or find their usefulness right away doesn’t mean that potential wasn’t there the whole time.

We’re all so super focused on getting where we want to go and finding our purpose and manifesting an abundant life and all that sexy stuff.

But that’s not the point of it all.

At all.

The point is in the growth.

Your growth through the process is what allows you to step into your usefulness and your purpose.

But good, solid growth takes a long time.

A long time. Those two trees didn’t have the experience or the structure to shade my house in those early years.

They had to wait years to build the root system and longevity to support bigger branches with more leaves and ultimately….shade.

Those trees had the simple task of relying on nature to provide the resources for growth. And it wasn’t overnight.

Growth isn’t always noticeable to you until you need it.

You don’t always realize how much you’ve learned and assimilated experiences until you have to call on that stuff in a pivotal moment.

Like those trees, you don’t realize that your canopy is growing because you’re busy just trying to keep things going.

And you don’t always see how the specific shape you’re taking on is going to be useful to anyone, until the opportunity presents itself.

I needed shade that day, and those trees were in a position to step up and provide that.

No one saw that coming.

Here’s the fortune cookie part of all this:

Growth can serve you and others around you if you trust the process.

Isn’t that the point of growth? Not to heap on yourself but to provide the cooling shade of wisdom and hope to those who need it? To others who are blinded by the heat waves coming into their life?

Maybe you look at your life and don’t think that anything you’ve been through serves a purpose.

Maybe you feel like those trees.

Someone hangs an ornament on you from time to time but honestly you just feel like you’re existing. You’re going through stuff, but why?

Nothing is wasted and every experience matters.

You are growing. And one day you will step into your true role and some of this just may make sense.

Until then, keep growing.

Check out one of the trees today! 👇

It looks like one of the trees didn’t make it, but look how big our little friend is now!

Pear trees today

You can catch episodes of Mental Health Moment by visiting mymentalhealthmoment.com. Don’t forget to subscribe to Mental Health Moment on Amazon Alexa, Apple podcast, Google podcast and Spotify. Just search for “Mental Health Moment with Lori Miller.”

If you want Mental Health Moment delivered right to your inbox, visit mymentalhealthmoment.com to sign up to get these delivered to your email every day.

If you’re STILL wanting for more, you can find articles and videos about stress and mental health, by visiting my website at LoriMiller.me.

Thanks for listening!

I’d love to hear what you think!

  • Leave a note below or ask me a question in the comment section below.
  • Share this episode on Pinterest, Facebook, and LinkedIn .

Help spread the message about good mental health!

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.

 




Ep 68: Find your carefree

, , , ,


What does it mean to live carefree? Is that even possible today with so much grabbing for our attention?

So much of being carefree is in letting go of what’s not serving you. Here’s a little of my experience.

You can listen to this episode right here! 👆

And don’t forget to subscribe to hear future episodes of Mental Health Moment wherever you are! 

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.

 





Full transcript 👇

Ep 68: Find your carefree

Hi. I’m Lori Miller and I’m back! This…is your Mental Health Moment.

How’s your summer so far?

I took a little break there because my son just got married. It’s hard to believe that the little toddler who used to stand in his diaper next to the window and laugh and wave at the guys on the back of the trash truck… is now a married man.

That was so fast.

I wanted to drink in all the fun and happiness these past few weeks, and experience every emotion and feeling.

And we surely did that!

I’ve spent the past few days since the wedding quietly reflecting on what it all means.

Because I’ll tell you, watching my son and his wife look at each other and how they can see their future together just in the way they smile, literally nothing else mattered in that moment.

Sitting there watching all this, I wasn’t thinking about how I was going to get through all my emails, or how much paperwork I had to do, or if there was going to be time to fit in all my writing sessions for this week.

That day in my life, watching them start a new life, was simply…carefree.

It wasn’t so much that I didn’t have any care in the world. But it was more about what I chose to focus on in that moment.

All that other stuff just didn’t make the cut that day. Not even close.

And I liked feeling carefree very much.

I don’t know that I’ve given the idea of carefree living too much attention before now.

When I think of carefree I think of someone running through a field of tulips or something, maybe letting your hair run wild and free. I was a teenager in the 80s and there were a lot of hair commercials back then so maybe that’s where that came from.

If you’re a taskmaster like me, being carefree sounds slightly horrifying because it means something else is probably not getting done while you’re running through all those tulips.

It took me a while to even put that word on what I was feeling.

I guess I equate being carefree with fun and they’re really not the same thing, are they?

When I think of fun I think Disney World or a trip to New York or watching the Yankees win (and that is soooo happening this year, my friends, mark my words).

But these fun things are wrapped up in specific events. I can’t do fun things like that very often unless I win the lottery.

But carefree, well, I think I can live like that.

Because being carefree is just focusing on letting go of what’s pulling on me.

Do you ever feel like this? Like everything’s just pulling on you all at the same time?

Wouldn’t it be nice to just not feel that pressure for a nanosecond?

You can actually make that happen for yourself.

Feeling carefree is less about not having any cares at all but caring more about what’s important to you.

There’s no magic formula or mantra for being carefree. When I decide to focus and give my attention to one thing that matters to me, everything else seems to kind of fall away on its own.

I feel room and space around me to breathe a bit.

So carefree is a place I can choose to go anytime I want.

What are some benefits of choosing to live in a carefree state of mind?

Well for starters, it takes you out of that “just existing” mode.

I know you know what I’m talking about.

It’s not hard to fill your life up with so much stuff to do that you feel like you’re just checking the boxes and doing it all again tomorrow.

Same time, same station, same snacks.

Choosing to be more carefree means maybe you leave a few boxes unchecked today.

Stop the hamster wheel for a minute and experience just one different thing, something that’s not on your list.

Sometimes this is enough to help you feel like you can breathe again.

Second, being carefree is a slam dunk when it comes to staying in the present moment.

You can’t be carefree and be thinking about next Tuesday’s meeting or stewing over how your mechanic ripped you off last week.

Most of our stress and anxiety is wrapped up in the moments we’re not currently living in.

I mean, your life is happening right now.

Choosing to give yourself a carefree moment gives you a shot at actually experiencing that.

Last, finding carefree moments helps you let go of your stress.

You’ve probably had that experience on vacation when you finally let go of your to do list and then you’re like, what was I thinking? Why do I let that stuff bother me?

I’m totally gonna stop doing that.

You get clarity in that moment because it’s so obvious what is giving you energy and strength. But honestly you can have that realization on a smaller level every day.

When you stop and make the choice to experience where you are in any given moment, you take your stress down a notch.

I wish I could give you a recipe for carefree but honestly you have to define this one for yourself.

What’s carefree for me may seem ridiculous to you.

The truth is that we are trying to do too much. And much of what we do on any given day is just not that important, if we’re honest.

Life isn’t just about getting stuff done and achieving goals.

There’s such a rich tapestry of experiences that we’re missing out on because we’re bound up by our task centered existence.

Choose to find a few random carefree moments in your days and see if it doesn’t change your outlook on your stress.

You can catch episodes of Mental Health Moment by visiting mymentalhealthmoment.com. Don’t forget to subscribe to Mental Health Moment on Amazon Alexa, Apple podcast, Google podcast and Spotify. Just search for “Mental Health Moment with Lori Miller.”

If you want Mental Health Moment delivered right to your inbox, visit mymentalhealthmoment.com to sign up to get these delivered to your email every day.

You can find other articles and videos about stress and mental health by visiting my website at LoriMiller.me.

Thanks for listening!

I’d love to hear what you think!

  • Leave a note below or ask me a question in the comment section below.
  • Share this episode on Pinterest, Facebook, and LinkedIn .

Help spread the message about good mental health!

 

Get Mental Health Moment 🎧

in your inbox every day.