Retrain Your Brain

You may be happy some of the time, but you just can’t stop daydreaming about the good ol’ days. When you first started your business you were excited and happy to wake up each day. Now your business is owning you. You’re afraid to make any changes because of the consequences.

Many of us get stuck in this cycle. We are afraid to create systems that will make us happier.

If so then what is stopping you?

Download the Retrain Your Brain PDF

Internal Demons

I used to be very afraid. I was afraid that people might hate what I created. I was afraid that my family and friends would laugh at me.

My fear was so intense that I had trouble sleeping at night. I remember lying in bed at 3am and dreaming of my business thriving. I envisioned myself working with amazing clients and not worrying about money.

What a mistake!

I was so consumed with perfection that I didn’t take little steps to make my business work for me. I always wanted to create products, but I kept putting it off. Creating products fit my superpowers, but for some reason I resisted. I was afraid that my clients would buy my products and hate them.

When I finally let go of my fear and went for what would make me happy, no one was laughing. Most of my clients were encouraging. My problems were within me, not with anything external. When I stopped giving in to my fears, I began to attract like-minded people.

I found people who were launching products and they taught me how to improve my business. I also researched websites and books, and I talked to local business owners. I found coaches to help direct my business. I built my confidence back up from almost nothing.

Letting Go

You need to let go of the idea of your perfect business. There is no such thing as a perfect business. There are always jerks at every level. There are problems at every level. Rich people actually complain about being rich.

I had a friend who actually said he wished he was poor, so he wouldn’t feel obligated to pay to repair his in-laws’ car. He was half joking, but it’s true. I’ve found that rich people are more likely to complain about their lives. They often don’t appreciate the people, resources, and time that they have.

Money is not the answer to your problems. The answer lies in meeting your own needs within your business.

You need to let go of perfection by letting go of your fears. Building a business that brings you a lot of joy will take time and small steps.

Retrain Your Brain

Learning to let go of the fear and focus on the positive aspects of your business is the hardest step to making your business happiness a reality. It will take self-discipline, which may be one of the most under appreciated habits.

For the next thirty days, try to be hyper aware of your thoughts and feelings. Every time you have a self defeating thought, go through the following steps:

1. Acknowledge this thought.

2. Know that you created this idea and you get to choose how to use it.

3. Picture the thought floating into a black hole (or any image that allows you to imagine this thing disappearing).

4. Focus on a positive aspect of the present moment (i.e. a cup of good coffee, an amazing skill that you have, or the connection to friends who support you).

Take time to try this right now:

1. What is the last self defeating thought that you had? (The PDF gives space to actually write out your response)

2. Know that you created this idea and you get to choose how to use it.

3. Sit back, close your eyes and imagine this thought disappearing to never disturb your confidence again. Write down what you imagined.

4. What is one positive aspect of your present situation? (Visualize the actions and results that you get from this part of your business.)

Applying these techniques helped me stop bullying myself. I stopped wrecking my confidence and I created a more positive perspective.

Some of you may not believe in positive psychology and that’s fine, but know that your beliefs influence your actions. If you believe you can write an amazing book or build a successful business that is the first step toward making it happen.

You must learn to be your greatest fan. Once you have trust in yourself, people around you will have trust in you as well.

Next week we’ll talk about chunking your goals into small in order to that make your dream business feasible.

Download the Retrain Your Brain PDF

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* Mark Silver a wonderful man helping small business gain confidence to follow their hearts talks about using the silence to master your mind.

If you enjoyed this post then you will probably like this one too:

> A Simple Guide to Overcoming Project Resistance

> My Arch Nemesis Dr. Oatzel Almost Stole My Superpowers

7 thoughts on “Retrain Your Brain”

  1. Hi Karl

    Oh this is fantastic! I just read an awesome essay on this the other day where your thought “I’ve found that rich people are more likely to complain about their lives. ” is right on!

    We think we constantly need more, and as you pointed out this certain “perfection” but we neglect the happiness that can be right in front of us.

    And it is so true, studies have found that after $10,000 per year, happiness does not really go up. Sometimes more money makes for more misery.

    Anyway, I think there are new parts of me that are opening up and some old that need shedding to keep coming out of my shell and embrace my superpowers, so I am coming back to the PDF later today, to take you up on the exercises.

    Much thanks for awesome material -(as always)!

  2. Hi Evita, Money is really just one way to measure our results. There are many ways to do that. We can measure our results by our friendships, lives we’ve touched, and how much happier we are than last year. Well, really there are an infinite amount of ways, but you get the point.

    Hope the PDF is a big help. I think you’ll also like the next post too, so stay tuned.

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  4. Hi Karl,
    A post jam packed with important info.

    First I wonder how many people actually “get” (from a neuroscience perspective) that we are actually training our brains, creating neural networks with all of our thinking habit, regardless of what they are. Consequently, there is no reason to think we can’t “retrain” it to be more supportive of what we actually want to think – and do.
    Beliefs are at the core. And one of the most erosive beliefs is about perfection.
    We are – it all is – a work in progress.
    As for the money beliefs – well we have a gazillion of them – all driven and reinforced by ideas and images from a mostly fear-based culture.


  5. Hi Karl

    You talk about fear a lot, and you’re so right.

    It’s just that when you’ve invested so much time and resources, not to mention all your hopes and dreams, it’s so easy to be afraid that you’ll lose it all. Or that nothing will come about from all that investment. Letting go is a challenge.

    Thanks for your great post.

  6. Hi Louise, We train our muscles, so why can’t the brain gain strength too? By taking the time to create new neural pathways we can develop habits that support our careers. I also like how you said beliefs are at our core. The more we work on aligning our beliefs with our happiness the more enjoyable life becomes.

  7. Karl,
    I know exactly how you used to feel in that hole. I like you retrained my brain and I’d recommend you to anyone who needs help doing that. The best person to learn from is someone who’s been there. And you freely tell us you’ve been there and it makes you endearing to us.

    When I read about how we can get a million dollars or a zillion subscribers I remind myself that not only to I not need that I don’t want that. I want people who I can help, who are the right fit. I don’t need meaningless promises and hype.

    You’re sincere, honest and work with integrity, who wouldn’t want a coach and friend like that? For me that’s enough.

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