Hello, Gorgeous Soul.
What to expect when you’re rewiring.
Welcome back to Calm AF, Gorgeous Souls.
A couple of weeks ago I was preparing for a journaling workshop that I was hosting and one of the things I wanted to tell them the number of thoughts humans think every day.
I talk about this ALL the time when I’m driving home the point of HEY don’t believe all your thoughts, but for some reason my brain can NEVER hold onto the number.
Like it is 10,000? 100,000? I can never remember.
So I looked it up and the research I found says it’s anywhere from 12,000-60,000 thoughts which is quite a range.
THIS is not the interesting part, though.
I found a statistic I had NEVER seen before.
The National Science Foundation did a study and their findings were that of these 12-60k thoughts per day, 80% of those thoughts were negative.
Again? Not a shocker to me. If you asked me to guess that stat, I would’ve been CLOSE.
HERE’S the stat I’d never heard and I was blown away: 12,000-60,000 thoughts per day. 80% of them negative. 95% of them REPETITIVE.
So 95% of the thoughts you are thinking today, you thought yesterday and you’ll think tomorrow and on and on.
So is it ANY surprise then that we tend to get stuck in ruts??
You get stuck in ruts because 95% of your thoughts are the same from one day to the next.
You tend to end up back where your started because 95% of your thoughts are on auto-pilot.
You tend to start new habits and then inevitably go BACK to old habits.
THIS is why.
Because if you don’t do the work of changing the repetitive automatic thoughts that aren’t serving you, your efficient brain will come back to them.
It’s not lack of willpower.
It’s not because you’re not strong enough.
It’s because your brain is simply doing what it’s designed to do: keep things easy.
If you don’t like your current habits.
If you are currently feeling exhausted or resentful or STUCK, you can’t just change what you DO.
AND you can’t just temporarily change what you think..
You’ve got to go deep and rewire repetitive OLD neural connections, patterns and stories to NEW INTENTIONAL neural connections, patterns and stories.
It’s NOT as complicated as it sounds, either.
You’re already DOING it.
Think about it: every one of those repetitive thoughts were a new thought once upon a time.
ALL of these repetitive auto pilot thoughts YOU hardwired.
To be fair, you probably did it UNINTENTIONALLY, which is why I’m always preaching about being intentional in your thoughts and your life.
But….if you’ve already done it once, if your brain was capable of wiring your CURRENT beliefs and habits, it’s capable of rewiring NEW beliefs, thoughts and habits.
I talk about this ALL the time. We are diving IN to this in Rewired AF. My group started last week, they got their first class and it was on INTENTIONS. The foundation of rewiring.
If you missed this class, you need to get on the waitlist for my next class which I’ll be enrolling in DECEMBER. Listen, if you were one of the people who was on the fence or wanted to join but had some drama about it….figure your shit out and BE there for the next round.
You can join the First to know list at kristenfinch.com/rewiredaf
Now that you KNOW that all of your repetitive thoughts became repetitive because YOU thought them over and over which means that YOU can absolutely change those repetitive thoughts – REWIRE THEM – to ones that create forward motion….
TODAY what I want to share with you are 3 VERY NORMAL things that will DEFINTILEY happen during the rewiring process.
Knowing that these things are NORMAL will greatly increase the probability that you won’t GIVE UP which will lead to you successfully rewiring your old habits and thought patterns.
The FIRST thing to expect when you’re rewiring: you will NOT unlearn repetitive thoughts overnight. You will NOT rewire new thoughts overnight. I want you to pause and take that in. I’m not just saying this shit to make you feel better. When I tell people rewiring takes time I’m often met with “yeah yeah, it’s just that *I * don’t have time for this.” Or “I’m an overachiever Kristen….it won’t take ME too long.”
You may have heard me say this before: “You are absolutely special, but you’re not THAT special.”
Here is how a brain works: Something happens in your external world. A neuron fires. That creates a THOUGHT. That neuron creates an electrical signal in other neurons. Those two neurons now are connected. When you experience a similar external circumstance, those two neurons REMEMBER each other, and they connect again. The MORE you think the thought, the more hardwired this neural pathway becomes until your brain doesn’t even have to put any effort into thinking anymore. It’s automatic.
The thoughts you think MORE become more and more automatic.
When you want to make a NEW neural connection, it requires TIME to create a new neural pathway and then REPEAT the new thought enough to hardwire it.
It just takes time for a brain to learn this. YES, the more of yourself you COMMIT to rewiring, the easier the process becomes but we cannot bypass that it takes time.
Everyone ALWAYS thinks that THEY should be able to do it faster.
You are special, but not THAT special. You are not exempt from the take it takes a brain to rewire a neural connection.
The second thing to remember as you move through the rewiring process: you will MOST DEFINITELY doubt your new thoughts before you believe them.
So here’s how it goes.
Let’s say you are a people pleaser. And your entire life has been spent making sure EVERYNE else was taken care of first.
And now you’re exhausted and empty.
So you want to UNLEARN the thought “I have to make sure everyone else is happy and THEN I can be happy.”
Your conscious level thoughts are “I GET why that’s not true. Because even if everyone around me is happy, I’m exhausted and resentful. NO ONE is taking care of me”
SO off you go. Deciding that YOU MATTER. And that it’s okay for you to tell someone else no. Or you’re okay with taking care of yourself first.
And then???? Someone gets upset with you. Someone is disappointed. You tell someone no and they do NOT like it. OR they might not even get upset or disappointed…but YOU have to sit with the GUILT.
And so you’re like “Yeah….ok. I’m exhausted and feel like an empty shell but at least I’m not hurting anyone else. I know how to come last. I’m used to it.”
Your brain will definitely believe MORE that the old thoughts are TRUE. You DO believe it’s better to just put yourself last.
And all you need to know is that this WILL happen. Your brain has SO much more evidence for your old repetitive patterns than it does for your new one.
It’s normal. It doesn’t mean it’s not working, it doesn’t mean that your new thoughts aren’t rewiring…it means they ARE. And your brain is just doing the thing where it tries to be effiicient.
All right. The next thing to expect while you’re rewiring. The HARDEST? Accessing your new rewired thoughts is when you’re triggered.
I KNOW this is when you need it the most, So you’re like “Ummmmm….what good does this calm AF thinking do me if I can’t access it when I’m NOT calm AF.”
So. A reminder about what happens in your body when you experience a surge of stress hormones. Your body believes there’s an emergency and so it starts shutting systems down that could slow you down from escaping the danger.
In a nutshell in an emergency your body gets ready to run or fight or freeze NOT think.
THIS is why it’s so important to be practicing and hardwiring NEW thoughts when you aren’t stressed AF.
But you need to remember that it’s NORMAL.
So often i’ll have a client come to me saying “Most of the time, I’m feeling better. I’m definitely getting better at managing my thoughts. But as SOON as my husband said this thing to me, ALL my practice went out the window.
It’s just a work in progress.
AND? How about the fact that MOST OF THE TIME, it’s feeling better.
Don’t judge your progress on your worst moments.
Alright, that’s today’s message.
Listen to this one again. I want you not just to hear my words, I want them to SINK IN. Changing your habits, changing your 95% repetitive thoughts is ABSOLUTELY possible and the process is full of ups and downs. It’s normal.
If you don’t give up, your special / not special brain WILL create new neural connections. It WILL rewire. And knowing that the struggles are NORMAL will help you keep going.
Love you all so much. See you next week.
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And if you want to dig deeper and work with a coach who’s GOT YOU, contact me to set up a free consult. I love working with people who are hard on themselves, the over-thinkers, people pleasers, perfectionists, and overachievers. Any of this ringing your bell? I’d love to hear from you!