This week, we had Jill Payne come in to give us a talk on positive reinforcement. It was all about how you can change your own outcome just by practicing positive thinking. It sounds cheesy, but it actually WORKS!
And I have to tell you: this speech came at the exact right time in my life. There has been a lot of negativity surrounding me lately, with a lot of “I can’t do this”, and obstacles, and frustration. And even as someone who is essentially a SUPER POSITIVE person, I’ve been finding myself going to the dark side…
“you’re tired and everything hurts, you should stop”
“you can run tomorrow” (ps. tomorrow never comes).
Or my husband (who, lately, has also existed at a level 2 – for all you Team Myles folks who know what I am talking about) vents about his frustrations, and I soak them all in and take them onto my own shoulders because when someone you love is upset it’s so easy to get caught up in their pain yourself. And you want to let people you love vent and express themselves, but it comes at a cost because it takes a toll on your heart and mind as well.
And on and on and on until I’ve basically been walking around just READY to be angry. And everything is HARDER – waking up, going to the gym, going out for runs, feeling like doing ANYTHING, being social, eating well.. it all feels like a chore.I was chalking it up to the ‘winter blues’ but then that meant I was basically relinquishing any ownership I had in making my situation better.
And really, it’s ALL perspective and perception: Positive thoughts equal positive emotions which ultimately equal positive attitudes and outcomes.
So, during her speech I had so many “aha!” moments, and then I thought to myself, “I’m going to make an effort to practice this on this run”.
I put a HILARIOUS podcast on, which helped because I was laughing the whole run.
I also had a smile on my face the ENTIRE run, which meant that every person I passed smiled back at me, which made me smile even more.
Every time it started to feel hard (and it was a looooong friggin’ run, so that was OFTEN), I reminded myself how lucky I was that I even got to DO this.
I reminded myself how proud I was going to be when I finished.
I looked around and took in the pond, and the trees, and the early spring foliage around me.
I cheered on my teammates when I saw them, and they cheered me on too which was awesome.
Inside of telling myself, “you should probably stop,” I told myself, “you’re killing it, keep going”
And throughout the run I found myself getting faster and faster, my stride feeling easier, and my motivation getting stronger. We ran out for 28 minutes, and back…I cut 3 minutes off my return time because my pace picked up by that much.
I know it wont be easy, there are certain negative factors and people in my life that have a way of breaking me down. But now INSTEAD of trying to JUST ‘be there’ for those people, I’m just going to be POSITIVE for them and point out the positive TO them. And maybe it will be annoying to them, but it’s also an act of self-preservation for my own mind and body.
All I know is DIMING feels pretty damn good, and I want to keep that going.