Ever notice when you make a goal to do something and it is not yet within your reach, how badly you want it? It feels so elusive and so hard to finally get it within our grasp, and then as soon as we do, it is no longer good enough! This happens to us in so many areas of our lives. Whether it be a personal goal or a business one, our brains always want us to believe that it is not quite enough, and we are going to have to set the bar just a bit higher if we want to experience satisfaction. I will illustrate how this works by sharing a few pretty big personal goals I have made this past year, what I experienced while trying to achieve them, and then discuss the emotions that I felt when I actually did achieve one of them. Then I will follow that up with suggestions for learning to recognize this brain BS when you see it, how to reject it, and to celebrate your accomplishments as the triumphs that they are!
So,the first goal of the year I want to share is related to getting certified as a life coach and weight loss coach at the Life Coach School. Since I chose the entrepreneur track last March, I had to choose a goal of how much money I wanted to make within a certain time frame in my new business. The idea is to pick something that feels impossible and to get out of my comfort zone to become the person who shows up to the world like a woman who makes a lot more money than I am right now. Since I have never been a businesswoman before to say this is stretching me, is a massive understatement. The actual outcome though of whether or not I achieve my goal, is not nearly as important as who I become in the process.
As of today, I am way short of my goal. I still have until January of 2021 to meet it but a frequent theme that could take over if I let it, is I am not doing enough to meet my goal. The truth is I have done a lot and have worked endless hours to create a podcast, blog, Facebook groups, and the online Brain BS Community where I provide group coaching. I also have recruited individual clients that I coach on a weekly basis. In addition, I recently hired a social media consultant to help me with Facebook ads and funnels and a photographer for my website and advertising photos. In case you did not pick up on it, this is what a woman who believes she is going to make a lot more money by the end of January will do. So, when my brain tries to tell me that there is no way I am going to achieve my goal and that I am not doing nearly enough, I say screw you brain BS. I am amazing for even making the impossible goal in the first place! I also give myself credit for the fact that I have made any money at all so far since I just started my coaching business.
My second goal was a weight loss one. I decided this past June that I wanted to lose weight. I weighed 157 when I started The Life Coach School weight loss program and none of my clothes fit me properly and I just felt fat and gross. When I was choosing my goal weight, I had so much brain BS come up that I could not decipher reality from the stories in my head. I was going to just choose 150 as my goal but I really wanted to weigh 145 pounds. It had been years since I had though, so I was afraid of making that my goal and then not being able to achieve it. I was pretty certain that I was too old to get back to that weight without taking extreme measures like cutting out sugar, flour and wine. I got coaching on this though and learned how to manage my mind and low and behold, I got down to 141! It took longer than I thought it would, I had to tweak my protocol for eating, and I had to adjust to intermittent fasting and eating within an eight-hour window. All good!
So in this case, I surpassed my goal and it felt amazing for about two seconds. After making further adjustments to the way I approach my diet with the premise that whatever I do will be sustainable for life and not too restrictive, I added a few more treats here and there and ended up at 145. I had indeed achieved my goal, but I no longer felt it was good enough, because I experienced 141 for a few weeks. All that time of desperately wanting to weigh 145 again, and here I was, rejecting it as not good enough. Now let me be clear, at the time when this was happening, I was not aware that a theme of not good enough was taking place. I really believed it was factual that I would look and feel better at 140lbs instead of 145. One I became aware that it was brain BS, I just purposely decided to be excited about the 145 and celebrate it! Does that mean I can’t still try to weigh 140? No! In fact, a positive mindset and thinking like somebody who weights 140 is going to get me way further than thinking I am not enough at 145. Does that make sense? Of course, if I do get back to 140, my brain will then immediately offer how about 135?
Let me give you another example of a goal I achieved this year that ended up not feeling like it was quite enough for me. This goal is more of a spiritual nature and involves becoming more deliberate in how I live my life. When I say deliberate, I mean conscious and purposely managing my mind to get the results I have in my life on a daily basis. Well unless I am Jesus Christ and I don’t know it, I am not going to achieve this goal 100% of the time no matter how long I try. As long as I have a primitive brain or ego, I will always have to be vigilante and aware that my brain lies to me repeatedly and I cannot believe it. No matter how hard I try to remember that, my sneaky brain takes over and before I know it, I am in the brain BS again!
Now that I have a better understanding of how my brain works and spend a great deal of time trying to improve my thought work, I no longer judge myself for being a human with a brain. In fact, I spend a great deal of time basking in peace of mind and being grateful that I am inspired to prioritize my life the way I do now, instead of getting upset with myself or feeling shame when I come up short. I love myself now and have my own back so when I get tricked by my brain BS, I forgive myself and get back to work.
So here you have three different goals and three different ways that the theme of never enough comes up. We experience it when we are creating goals, achieving them and even when we surpass them. I bet if you really take a look at your life and what goes on in your brain on a daily basis, you will find that this not enoughness is much more prevalent than you realize. Could be that man you are married to just doesn’t love you enough, or you might think your child just does not appreciate you enough. Maybe you don’t think you are pretty enough. The good news is you know better than to buy into it now and you can just identify it as the brain BS that it is, and decide that you are enough exactly as you are. Join me in Episode #17 of The Brain BS Podcast to discuss this further.