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ACTING to get THINKING Right


ACTING to get your THINKING Right

In my list of SMART actions, I always include at the top of the list: Saying affirmations and visualizing the outcome. No doubt, being in the right mindset is important when taking action on your goal. I often say, “It all starts in the head.”

But have you ever experienced a time when you just could not get your head in the game?

Have you ever experienced a time when your affirmations fell flat or you just could not “feel” the way you want to feel when you reach your goal?

I have, and I have found that sometimes I can ACT my way into THINKING right.

Let me offer an example:

My exercise of choice is rowing, and I usually row first thing in the morning. I am not a champion rower, but I am not a beginner either.

One morning not too long ago, I went out and made a beginner’s mistake by reversing an oarlock. When that happens, the boat is not balanced and becomes virtually unrowable. I was trying to maneuver back to the dock to fix this error, when I flipped. SPLASH! I was in the drink. And to make matters worse, I had an audience on the dock. I felt really stupid.

The next morning there was a lot of debris in the water. I missed seeing a log which I rowed up on top of. Lodged on this log, I was like a little island floating down the river. It became quite unnerving for me and my companions because I was headed right for a bridge. Fortunately, I got dislodged before I hit anything. But it was disturbing enough that we all immediately rowed back to the dock.

So when the alarm went off at 4:30 the next morning, I was thinking I should just sleep in. I was not feeling much like a rower. But I said to myself, “What do rowers do? They row.” I got up and went out to row. Nothing bad happened. I cannot say it was an exceptional row. I was quite cautious and hesitant. But nothing bad happened.

The fourth day, it was a little easier to get up when the alarm went off. I truly enjoyed that row. I was back in the game. I was a rower again. This is a picture of me on that 4th morning.

So sometimes we just have to act until we can generate the right mindset and feeling. I think that is why when someone falls off a horse, they are encouraged to get right back in the saddle again. And why there is the mantra to feel the fear and do it anyway.

I do not think sustained action that is taken while in the wrong mindset (particularly fear or self-doubt) is going to be terribly effective, but sometimes we just need to take some action to get our mindset right.

I challenge you: Where are you feeling a bit stuck because your head is not in the game? What action might you take to begin to generate the right mindset?

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Sarah E. Brown 2019