As I’ve tried to affect my mindset through lifestyle change recently, I’ve realized that using positive reinforcement to reach my goals is wonderful and affirming, while negative reinforcement is exhausting and terribly bad for my mental health.
The issue is that even if I decide to reframe my mind in a more positive way by changing my habits instead of staying stagnant, I often can set goals for myself that are imagined in the “negative form,” or in a way that is a bit of an attack on myself. Like, Why can’t you just go to bed earlier? Eat healthier so you look better, just stop eating so much crap! Why are you such a loner? Socialize more!
Instead of creating goals from a place of judgement, I’ve found that coming from a spot of excitement and anticipation for the benefits of the lifestyle changes I’m trying to implement is so much better.
Video on this topic:
I found that the last time I tried to do this Jolvie Mental Health Challenge, I was framing my goals in a very negative way. I wanted to stop myself from going to bed so late because I hated how I felt when I repeatedly slept most of the day away. However, I was creating the goal for myself from a mindset of frustration and unhappiness. Which, of course, is part and parcel of dealing with depression.
However, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Yesterday when I was in Manly (a beach town in New South Wales, Australia) I somehow found myself awake at 5:30 AM which is entirely unheard of for me. My phone was charging in the only spot across the room and I didn’t have it with me to see the time, so when I got out of bed and saw it was 5:30 AM and felt the sun across my face, after going to bed early at around 10 PM…I decided to go on a walk instead of going back to bed! It was the best decision ever. I watched the sunrise, felt like I had so much time in the day to get things done, and had a complete reframing of my mindset. I all of a sudden felt genuine inspiration to turn myself into a morning person.
True inspiration and excitement is so much better than negative reinforcement.
So, I’m going to try to take a long hard look at the goals I make for myself, and try to come at them from a place of love for myself instead of hate. Since, that hate is all wrapped up in the depression I’m trying to get as far away from as possible!
Hope you’re all doing well,