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Hi and welcome to this latest podcast episode. Thank you so much for being here. Um I'm looking forward to diving into this podcast episode, unleash your brilliance, unlocking the mindsets that hold you back. And I'm going to talk to you today about four most common mindsets that I see over the 14 years of coaching women that have that I see holding people back and holding myself back.

I have had all four of these mindsets and I continue sometimes to have all four and I have to constantly, every day check in with myself and make sure that I am not, not, not doing one of these mindsets. Um, it's very hot today, isn't it? It's absolutely roasting. I'm not complaining. I'm so thrilled that it's really sunny. It's great. Um, I'm a bit thrown as well because I don't know, I think I get really attached to things and I have this black water bottle and I can't find it and I'm drinking less water because of it. So I need to get my acting gear and find my lovely black water bottle. If you see one around Costa, please do, let me know.

So the four mindsets that I see the most common mindsets that are holding people back is a negative mindset. Um an all or nothing mindset, a perfectionist mindset and a victim mindset. And what I want to do in this episode is talk about each one symptoms to watch out for, to see if you have that mindset and tips to moving away from that mindset so that you can um go off and more easily achieve your goals, become consistent on what you want to become consistent at and get fit and healthy and feel really good and remove some of the obstacles that may be in your way.

What I've noticed um personally is that when I was trying to be fit and healthy, um or even now when I'm working on achieving goals and doing lots of new stuff like I have to that it's always nine times out of 10. It's my mindset that is stopping me from getting where I want to be. It's not that I don't know how to do something or that I don't want it badly enough. It's my mindset that gets in the way. Um, if you're focused on something like if you're listening to this now and you are struggling to get fit and healthy or you're struggling to achieve some sort of a goal, just know that it, it might possibly be a mindset that's holding you back.

And there's a couple of reasons why your mindset holds you back. And one of them is that a certain mindset can really give you a limited perspective on life. So you're very rigid in your viewpoints and solutions to things and possibilities and this can really restrict your problem solving abilities, can really restrict your creativity and can keep you very, uh, focused on one way of thinking which nobody wants to have their thinking very narrowed. Um, another reason that it can hold you back is that a certain type of mindset that you might have now that you mightn't even be aware of it can make the stuff that you don't want.

Like, you can have a really self fulfilling prophecy. Like if you've got a very negative mindset when you are starting a fitness program and you believe that it's going to end badly, the chances are, it's probably gonna end up ending badly. If you believe you're going to fail, it's probably going to happen that you're going to fail because that's the really annoying thing about mindsets that they really are, the blockage, the obstacles that are in our way that stop us from getting where we want to be. Um And that's self fulfilling prophecy. I can really relate to when I had very negative self esteem, very, very low confidence, thinking I was so bad and failing and everything. It's kind of how I would show up it.

It's exactly how I would show up negative, afraid of being wrong, very shy. So any goals that I wanted to achieve, I wasn't achieving them because I didn't think I was going to achieve them. And, ah, yeah, it's just terrific to know this so that you can go. Right. Ok. That's fair enough. I realize now I've got a negative mindset. How can I change that life becomes so much better? The quality of your life becomes so much better. You become so much more happy and settled in yourself. Um, you, you can miss opportunities. Would, it would, it would a mindset that holds you back and it really can restrict your growth and development. It's only been in the past couple of years that I have really worked on these four mindsets that I have.

I promise you, I promise you a transformation is absolutely possible if you, um, work on it a little bit every day. And the lovely thing about working on your mindset is that you don't have to sit down for any amount of time in the day. You can actually just like work on it as you go through your day and uh more, more, more, more on that later. Um First things, first, I want to talk about a negative mindset and I want to tell you what a negative mindset is. And you see, can you relate to this at all?

So a negative mindset refers to a general tendency to focus on the negative aspects of life of yourself, of situations leading to pessimism, self doubt and a lack of motivation. Isn't that crazy? So when you've got a negative mindset and you mightn't even be aware that you have a negative mindset that negative mindset can lead to self doubt. A lack of motivation and pessimism, a lack of motivation. Absolutely. And then we wonder, sometimes I've wondered in the past Jessica, why are you so inconsistent with your exercise? Literally, I can look back and realize it was because I had such a negative mindset when I would wake up in the morning. And I've told you this before, I would like, straight away, be negative about every single thing and I wouldn't be right until about one or two o'clock in the afternoon. And I look back now and I'm like, oh my God, I was so negative and that's where all the self doubt was coming from.

That's why I was so demotivated to figure out how to thrive in my life. Um So if you suspect you might have a negative mindset, here's some symptoms for you to look out for. Ok, so um pessimism is number one. So do you often expect the worst outcomes in various situations? And do you have a difficult time seeing the positive side of things? Number two, self criticism, you constantly criticize yourself. You focus on your flaws and failures rather than recognizing your strengths and accomplishments. Number three, you have a lack of confidence. So you doubt your abilities and you feel really inadequate even when you have evidence to the contrary, like so previous successes, but you still constantly doubt your abilities.

It's like describing myself back the way I used to be dwelling on the past. You tend to ruminate on past mistakes or negative experiences which prevent you from moving forward comparison. You frequently compare yourself to others and feel inferior or resentful, leading to feelings of jealousy or self pity. Now, I don't know about you, but I have had a very negative mindset. I can relate to all five of those symptoms. So if you dear listener are listening in and you're like, yeah, I actually have a negative mindset. I want you to know that it's really cool to know this and it's nothing to be embarrassed about that.

It's really, really common for it to be our default mindset. Maybe you experience a lot of stress or a lot of trauma, maybe the negative mindset has kept you safe up until now. However, maybe it is time to move on and start to move more towards a positive mindset. Maybe up to now with your negative mindset, you've been really inconsistent with your fitness and health and you haven't known why and you've called yourself lazy. That would be you doing the self criticism rather than you being lazy. You've just had a negative mindset and you haven't known that you have a negative mindset.

This is the thing with mindsets. We get into such habits with them. I had a negative mindset for years and it was just a habit. And my husband Joe used to say to me, why are you so negative in the morning? And I couldn't really give him an answer to that. I was just negative. I had gotten into such a bad place with my mind with my mental health. And I hadn't really, at that point in time having been negative in the morning time for nearly all my adult life. I didn't really think that there was a different way. Boy, is there a different way? So here are some tips if you want to stop having a negative mindset. Number one self awareness, and you'll notice in other podcast episodes when we talk on mindset and in this episode for every single thing you want to change, number one is the self awareness.

Recognize when negative thoughts arise and pay attention to the patterns of your thinking. Understanding your negative thinking pattern is the first step towards change. So, even if that's all you did for a couple of weeks, honestly, you'd be well on the road to changing your mindset, the self awareness step is really cool and has helped me change my life. I never used to question my thoughts. I used to just think my thoughts were thoughts. I didn't really understand or know that your thoughts aren't facts. I know that sounds crazy now, but I had just never thought about it. So when you start to get into this lovely awareness phase and you can do it straight away, all you have to do is wake up and start becoming aware of your thoughts and when you start to become aware that they're actually really negative.

Oh, that's such a cool feeling. Honestly, there's, there's no such thing as bad news when it comes to this stuff because you've literally look like just turned on the light in your room, in your dark room and uncovered the thing that you needed to fix or it's like lifting up a rug and shaking it out and just seeing what's underneath it and getting rid of the dust. It's, it's you going right? OK. I have a negative mindset. I actually didn't realize that I was this negative number two. It's to challenge those negative thoughts. You might want to stay in the awareness phase for a week or so.

Or else, you know, you could straight away start to challenge them for me. What always works best is just to kind of stay in self awareness until I'm ready to change. Um But number two challenge negative thoughts. So whenever you catch yourself having negative thoughts, you've got to question them, question their validity and then look for evidence to contradict it, to contradict those negative beliefs and come up with something alternative. And that could be to do with anything.

You could be, you know, just saying fly on like just off the cuff about how horrible your body is and you know, beating it down and you could listen to that yourself and think, oh my God, I've just after hating on my body and then question it is it true? Is my body really this awful? And then look for evidence to go the other way. Hang on a second. I'm healthy, I'm alive. I've got two working legs, two arms if you do. And that's absolutely amazing. And you, you, you just do it with everything. Number three, positive self talk. So replace your self criticism with positive and compassionate self talk. An absolute game changer. Life just becomes happier. I used to walk around with the weight of the world on my shoulders and I can still slip back into that a little bit of times. You know, Joe Joe says, come on, it's OK.

Take everything so seriously. Um It really is a game changer when you start to replace self criticism. So number one, notice it and then start to change it and just start to say nice, compassionate kind things to yourself, encourage and support yourself just as you would a friend. I remember reading so many things on social media about talk to yourself the way you would a friend. It used to wreck my head. I don't know why it wrecked my head, but it did. But if you put it this way, if you're unsure how you're talking to yourself or the advice you're giving yourself, because we're often a lot more hard on ourselves. It can often be a very gray area when it comes to ourselves.

It can be very black and white when we're dealing with somebody we love. But when it comes to ourselves, it can be very, very gray. So the next time you are being hard on yourself, ask yourself, OK, I'm going to take myself out of the picture and I'm going to ask, I'm going to imagine it's my friend Emer and I'm going to give her advice and then you say it out loud, the advice you would give her and then you just do it for yourself. Practicing gratitude can really help as well.

And it's important, you know, when you're practicing gratitude, I have noticed anyway, over the past six months, I used to practice gratitude. I started practicing gratitude at the start of COVID. I would do a bit of gratitude for about 20 seconds every day and I would feel grateful for those 20 seconds. However, I didn't really get familiar with the feeling of gratitude. And now I really get the feeling of gratitude and I feel it kind of traveling around my body the same way you feel frustration or fear or happiness.

If you start to get really aware of the feeling of gratitude in your system, it's easier to bring up throughout the day. It's crazy. So you know, you think of the things you're grateful for. However, throughout the day, try to bring up feelings of gratitude, imagine yourself like trying to pour a white light all over your body. Like just try to really bring up this feeling of gratitude. And you know, Tony Robbins always says we all have a highway to stress and frustration and a dirt road to gratitude and joy. Meaning we know the feeling so much of frustration and fear and worry. We can really familiarise ourselves with those feelings. 

However, we're not so in tune with the feelings of joy and gratitude and love. We're not so used to feeling them in our body as much as we are frustration and anger and worry. So if we can get really familiar with gratitude and joy, we can bring them up throughout the day and experience more gratitude and joy. It's really cool. So uh practicing mindfulness is really good. If you've got a negative mindset working on staying in the moment and a bit like experiencing joy and gratitude, experience nature and fresh air and the birds singing and the trees, things that help you feel content in the moment and feel a little bit more positive.

And I promise you if you are feeling very negative, which, which makes complete sense if you're going through or have been through a very, very tough time experiencing just a tiny bit, those little feelings of gratitude and joy and present moment feelings over time, they'll start to get bigger and bigger and bigger. And you might wake up tomorrow and experience feelings of gratitude and joy for like 2% of your day. But the week later, a week later, you might experience it, you know, 5% and then 10%. And that's kind of what happened to me. It's kind of what, what's happening to me. And um all I, all I felt in my body and every muscle memory, whatever fiber, all I felt was frustration and anger.

I can bring up those feelings really easily, feel tense, serious, stressed out, anxious, very serious, take myself very seriously, take the world very seriously. I used to find it really difficult to kind of laugh. Um And if I did, I was kind of surprised I was very good at fake laughing and stress laughing. And then I, when I realized it was a lot of my mindset, a lot of things that I had healed in my past had healed. However, my mindset was still stuck in that default mindset of negativity. So I went and started practicing gratitude, practicing joy just for a few moments. And I started to experience gratitude and joy for maybe a minute of the day. And then I started to experience it for kind of like an hour.

And now I'm experiencing it often throughout the day and I'm happy now. I, I'm, I'm moving away from materialistic stuff. Not that I've never, I've never really been materialistic anyway, but I'm just noticing that I'm more content within myself and it's a really cool feeling and I just want to pass it on to you if you're not feeling so good. And I want you to know that it's really doable as you move through your day. You don't need to sit down and journal for 10 minutes or meditate. You can just practice it as you go about your day, which is deadly. Ok. Um We're on to the all or nothing mindset.

So if you were the negative mindset, there were some tips for you to start to change. Now we're into the all or nothing mindset, which is really common in women who want to get fit and healthy. I mean, it's a word I'm sure or expression that you're so familiar with. I'm so familiar with this, having coached women to get fit and healthy for over 14 years since, what, 2007. Um, so, yeah, the all or nothing mindset. I did that for years and years too. You know, dieted, restricted calorie, counted everything, just all or nothing. I was eating like a big, large pizza with pepperoni and three bottles of wine.

Or else I was having a chicken salad and saying no to the dressing. Oh, it's so funny. We're so funny in a kind of compassionate way that we would like, order a chicken salad, not have any dressing on it and be like, no, no, no, no, no to the croutons. No, to the slice of brown bread on the side. Even though brown bread is healthy and then like, fucking, yes to the, like, massive pizza that we'll eat at the weekend or whatever the thing is for you. I remember so much, you know, I used to be so restrictive and so controlling with my food during the week and then I'd have drinks at the weekend, you know, I don't drink anymore, but I used to have drinks then at the weekend and I would have like, this cheese and crisp wrap heading off to bed after a night of drinking, I'd have like, two of them. I'd put loads of cheese into it, loads of crisps into it and like two racks. And in my head didn't really count. I was drunk. Yeah.

It just doesn't count the thoughts of doing that. Like, it would have freaked me out to even 1% consider doing that midweek. Like, if you said to me on a Wednesday afternoon, oh, go on, have two crisp and cheese wraps for your lunch. I'd be like, excuse me. But, you know, all or nothing. Absolutely bingo at the weekend. Um, same with wine drink when I, when I used to drink all or nothing, you know, give me 10 glasses of wine or I don't want to have a drink.

So the all or nothing mindset refers to a rigid way of thinking that views things in extreme terms, often believing that we must do everything or do nothing. For example, I can't get to my workout today. So I'm not going to do any workouts this week and you don't really say that out loud, but it kind of happens. You end up not working out or I'm going to be super restrictive with my food and then you end up having like a glass of wine or a bar of chocolate and you just go bananas. Um, or you have a, a blow out on a Wednesday night and you wake up Thursday and you just feel like you're off the rails and you find it difficult to get back on track. Yeah.

Finding it difficult to get back on track. I find a lot of women myself included like that, that you feel like if you're off track, you find it difficult or you're embarrassed to get on track when actually we're just in this beautiful thing called life and it, and it is about falling off and getting back up and it's how, how, how willing are you to be able to get up as many times as it takes, get punched in the face eight times and stand up and take 1/9 punch when it comes to working on getting what you want. Um And this mindset, you know, it can apply to all aspects of your life, goals, achievements, relationships, personal habits in the context of health and fitness. For example, Joan believes that if she can't follow her diet or exercise plan perfectly, then she mightn't as well. She might not, she shouldn't try.

There's no point and it can really create a black and white mentality where small setbacks or deviations from the plan are seen as completely failures, lead to feelings of guilt, frustration and self criticism. Have you ever done that? I know so many people myself included that have done that. I know so many women that have been such legends with their workouts and their thrive times and their water that have said, oh, I'm so annoyed that I had XYZ last night. A very black and white, very all or nothing thinking and feeling so guilty when absolutely no need to. It can be such a detrimental mindset because it often really leads to an unsustainable approach. It discourages progress, it hinders flexibility, it contributes to a cycle of starting over and over again. Um It can really, I think when it comes to your health and fitness, the all or nothing thing is the biggest in health and fitness and it's so frustrating that it's such a big stumbling block.

So the best thing to do is to adopt a more balanced and flexible mindset that allows for sustainable progress, self compassion and long term success. And the only way to get self compassion, sustainable progress and long term success is to allow for, I don't want to call them failures and I don't want to call them being off track because they're not. Even if you have five bowls of, well, that's kind of me five bowls of ice cream. If you have loads of ice cream on a Wednesday night, you can get back up the next day and work out and drink water. You don't have to get the stick and whack yourself over the head with and beat yourself repeatedly.

I can't believe I had ice cream. I can't believe I had ice cream. You're allowed to get up the next day and even say that was lovely and then go and get a workout done and drink your water and eat healthy. However, I think a lot of us get stuck in that guilt in that real guilt feeling and that makes us feel bad. Do you want to go and work out when you feel bad. I don't, I definitely don't. So here's some symptoms of an all or nothing mindset. So you can figure out if you are one. Ok. So perfect, you're a perfectionist. You really set highly unrealistic, high unrealistic standards and you believe that anything less than perfect is a failure. So for example, and I think a lot of people think they're not perfectionists because I think perfectionists, people can sometimes think perfectionists are like perfectly dressed, perfect makeup on everything's perfect.

That is not the case at all. With perfectionists, perfectionists can tend to appear like they don't care because they're so afraid of going wrong that they don't do anything at all. So, you know, I was a perfectionist when I was three stone overweight. You wouldn't look at me and think, wow, what a perfectionist she is. But that's the thing about perfectionism. It kind of causes some people to freeze. It would cause me to freeze, to not want to do anything because I was so afraid of being bad or wrong.

Extreme thinking. Number two, seeing situations as either a complete success or a total failure with no middle ground or room for mistakes. Like for example, you look back in your week and you've got your workouts done and you've drank water and you ate healthy. But all you can see are the other bits and pieces that you might have done like had ice cream or chocolate bars things like that, you're afraid of failure, you're very self critical. So you engage in negative self talk and you're really judgmental on yourself. When expectations are not met, you have extreme lack of flexibility, you're very unwilling to adapt or make adjustments when you're faced with obstacles or setbacks, avoidance. So sometimes you opt to avoid tasks and challenges altogether if they can't be done perfectly emotional distress. So you can feel really frustrated, guilty or anxious when things don't go exactly as planned or when expectations aren't met. Um over commitment, you can take on way too much, get overwhelmed and then completely stop and you have a difficulty finding balance.

So you struggle to find a middle ground between extremes. You have a really imbalanced approach to work relationships, personal well being, you can just go all the way or zero um overcoming all or nothing mindset. Yeah, it takes time and practice. But the lovely thing about all these mindsets is that you can practice it while you're living your life. You don't need to dedicate any extra time to it. Number one, of course, here we are again, awareness, recognizing and acknowledging it, know when you're falling into an all or nothing pattern, paying attention to your thoughts, reactions and the language you use when evaluating yourself or situations. So pay attention to your thoughts, reactions and the language you use when evaluating yourself or situations. Number two, challenge your thinking.

Again, it's the same thing for each mindset, become aware of it. Challenge your thinking, question the validity of your extreme beliefs and challenge the notion that perfection is the only acceptable outcome and try to find a balanced approach, set realistic expectations. For many of you out there, you need to do things maybe a little bit more simply and do less achievable goals that allow for flexibility and room for mistakes. If you take a look across the board, even in my coaching program, when my clients become successful, consistent is when they're realistic, they allow for flexibility and they make room for mistakes.

And I see these breakthroughs all the time with my lego clients, they go from feeling like they have to do everything perfectly to telling me. Well, look, it was a very busy week. I got two workouts in this week, which I'm delighted about because I was so busy or because I was away from work. And I just think to myself, you know what? That's absolutely brilliant. Um Breaking big tasks or goals into smaller manageable steps to avoid feeling overwhelmed. Um practicing self compassion and embracing the learning process is really, really important.

Also as an all or nothing thinker, it's really good to focus on the journey and not just the outcome. I've noticed that um as a coach that a lot of women are very focused on the outcome and then, you know, they come into my coaching program and it just becomes so fun because it's the journey. It's. How do the workouts go? Did you enjoy that session? How did that thrive time go? And many people can go from wanting to lose weight and not feeling satisfied until they get there or wanting to get fit or stronger bones or whatever it is and not feeling satisfied until they get there to going. Wow.

Being fit and healthy is really cool. Today's workout was deadly and shifting their attention from the end result to the process itself brings such joy and fulfillment to your present day because way too many of us and it was, I feel like I was hit on the head with this. It was such a revelation to me that you can't experience feelings in the future. However, we all plan for them. I have had pages and pages and pages in my journal of goals, goals, goals. When I'm trimmer Fitter, healthier. When my business is bigger. When this is better, I will be happy. I'll experience joy. I'll allow myself to experience gratitude. And then you, you know what I realized I was told, I read it. You can't experience feelings in the future. You can only experience them in the present moment. So if you can only experience feelings in the present moment, yet, you're saying to yourself when I lose two stone, I will be happy.

It means you're just choosing to put off feeling happy until you lose two stone and then what happens is you don't get there quick enough and then you have a negative mindset or you're doing all or nothing. So you start to be really hard on yourself. So when the fuck are you going to experience happiness then? And it's the same for every single positive feeling, gratitude, joy, all the lovely feelings that we plan for and all we have is now all we have is now celebrate small wins, really important as all or nothing thinkers that you acknowledge and celebrate your small successes along your journey. And you recognize and appreciate the effort you put in. And it's important, it's just so important to celebrate your wins.

We do that every Friday in the group, we celebrate our wins and just a gentle reminder that breaking free from an all or nothing mindset is a process and it requires patience and self compassion and be gentle with yourself and embrace the journey, focusing on finding joy and gratitude and love. Now, now, not when you've lost weight, not when you think you're going to look better, embrace it. Now, embrace it now, love yourself. Now, what's the problem? Love yourself now? So, mindset number three, a perfectionist mindset is characterized by a strong desire to achieve flawless results and an intense fear of making mistakes or falling short of high standards.

Individuals with a perfectionist mindset tend to set extremely high expectations for themselves and often hold themselves to unrealistic standards and I was telling you just a few minutes ago that I am a perfectionist and I was three stone overweight and I didn't look like I spent much time on my physical self. I was a perfectionist. However, I'm not so sure anybody would look at me and automatically assume that I was a perfectionist. So be careful with this one. It's easy to think. You're not a perfectionist just because of what you think a stereotype of a perfectionist is. But a perfectionist can often be somebody who does nothing. They don't put makeup on because they're afraid of not knowing how to put makeup on. They don't make their hair nice because they're afraid of making their hair look shit.

So therefore they don't want to put in any effort because they're afraid of. I'm trying to remember how I felt. I would be afraid I would, I'm going to be honest, I would be afraid of making my hair look nice because it was almost easier for me to just throw my hair up because at least then I couldn't fail. I didn't use to do lots of things for that very reason. I remember back, you know, a year ago when I was very inconsistent with my podcast episodes, I wasn't being lazy or demotivated. It's my favorite way to chat to you guys. However, I would spend no joke about an hour polishing the mic, the computer, cleaning the room, hoovering sweeping. When, if I was in the studio.

Anything but shoot the podcast episode. Desperate to be, um, for something to distract me. Clean, clean, clean until fingers crossed. One of the kids needs me. And I find a lot of people, I like that with lots of things. You know, even the workouts, like, you know, put it off to the last minute because hopefully I'll get distracted, I'll get an email. Somebody will need me and you're not being honest with yourself because you know, you do say in that moment, oh, whoops. Oh I can't do the work out now because I am called over here for me. It was, I can't do this podcast episode now because, you know, I was cleaning, I was getting ready for the episode, but then Joe called and I just had to go. So I only became consistent with doing two podcast episodes a week when I dropped trying to make it when I stopped worrying about coming across bad, you know, fuck it. I'm doing my best.

Yeah. And I'll improve over time. Um So here's some characteristics of a perfectionist mindset. So setting unattainable standards, perfectionists can set really high standards for yourself that you, they're difficult, if not impossible to achieve. And if you're a perfectionist, you believe that anything less than perfection is a complete failure. And even if you were to just break that down, like that sounds really extreme. And I think maybe some of you mightn't be able to relate to that.

But like, for example, you couldn't possibly do a workout if you got an email from work saying something was off or your kitchen was untidy or something was, and all the things weren't absolutely lined up. All your ducks in a row. Only when you, all your ducks are in a row. Could you do a workout? You couldn't possibly consider doing a workout with loose ends with, you know, that that's being a perfectionist. Um fear of failure. Just this deep fear of making a mistake or experiencing failure hinders your your growth so much because you're going to avoid taking risks or trying new things because you worry about not meeting your own high expectations. I do this all the time in work. Uh I've, I've stopped up to six months ago.

I have been so afraid of trying new things and being myself in front of camera. Even if you look back to my social media like a year ago, I was roaring, shouting into the camera, not being myself just so afraid of failing and like showing up as myself and experiencing failure. Um unwilling to try new things because I was afraid they wouldn't work out. Um Perfectionists are also very all or nothing thinking very black and white terms, just like all or nothing seeing things as perfect or a complete failure, no middle ground, very very harsh self criticism. They're often highly self critical judgmental of their own performance. Um, they may berate themselves for even minor mistakes or flaws, minor like a typo in an email.

Oh my God. Like in my head, that's just the worst thing you could possibly do. And I feel so bad and so guilty when I put a typo, um, to an email to like a client or somebody. II, I just get this straight away feeling that they think I don't care. And, you know, I actually do typos all the time. And one of the reasons I've noticed is I do typos is I can get very excited when I write emails or I'm just like dying to write back and I can write back really quickly if I'm in a certain mood and send it really quickly and not check. And one of the things that I have to do now is just really be fucking careful with my typos or like God, if heaven forbid, I wrote a client's name wrong, like with just a typo, you know, it's just that stick comes out.

I'm just whacking myself over the shoulders with thankfully not anymore. I'm working on all that. I do have little setbacks the odd time. But if you can relate to that, you're a perfectionist and there is another way you don't have to be beating yourself around the head for minor mistakes and flaws, procrastination due to the fear of you not meeting your own standards. Perfectionists can procrastinate in tasks or projects you can put off starting or completing um something because you want it to be perfect and you're afraid of falling short. I have done that all of the time and held myself back so much.

Now, one of my favourite, favourite sayings is version one is better than version none. And I just keep saying that to myself when I'm doing a podcast episode, when I'm putting out content on social media, when I'm creating workouts, version one is better than better than version zero. I used to be so inconsistent with showing up because I was so afraid of failing. Um a need for external validation. Perfectionists can really need external validation and approve and approval from others to feel worthy.

So you might rely on other opinions to validate your own accomplishments and you can struggle with self acceptance. Yes, absolutely. That was me is that you, I would only think something was good if somebody told me it was good. Um I, I read something there. I can't remember what it was but it was about, you know, could you go a full year doing what you, you're passionate about without getting any feedback whatsoever and be really confident in what you're doing. And, and I loved that. So because I think that's really important if you believe in what you're doing, if you believe in what you're doing, can you, can you keep going without somebody telling you it's good?

And you've, you've impaired well being. So you've got a constant pressure to be perfect and that can lead to stress, anxiety. Uh poor well-being, you experience burnout, you struggle with maintaining a healthy work life balance. Um So for you guys, you perfectionist, it's important to note that not all striving for excellence is negative, but when perfectionism becomes excessive to your well being and the quality of your life and it holds you back, it's a problem. Um So stopping a perfectionist mindset again, it's a process and here's what to do. And you know what I'm going to say, recognize and acknowledge it, become aware of your patterns, thoughts and behaviors.

Pay attention to your thoughts, to the high standards, you set yourself and the negative impact it has on you. Again, number two, challenge those beliefs, question the validity of them, challenge them and then remind yourself that nobody's perfect making mistakes is a natural part of it. And you're going to learn as you go, you're going to take action and learn on your action. You're not going to learn on your thinking, which is what I used to do. Learn on my thinking. You're going to learn on your action. You're only from now on going to take action and you're going to improve on that action. If you're really unfit, you're going to start your workouts and you're going to allow yourself to be in unfit while working out rather than being unfit. And thinking about working out, you're going to work out and be unfit and that's OK.

That's OK. Set realistic goals, um Break your bigger tasks into smaller manageable steps. That's been an absolute game changer for me. Everything that I do now and then that's what I tell clients. That's what I, what I say on content, like the content that I put up the podcast like small steps. What's the first thing you can do? What's the second thing that you can do? Practice self compassion? How you talk to yourself is really, really important. Um And uh and I have one more to do, I have one more to do. I'm just pulling it up here now, my notes. Um victim mindset. OK.

So what's a victim mindset? It is a mentality in which you perceive yourself as a constant victim of external circumstances or other people's actions and people with a victim mindset often believe they have little or no control over their own lives and that they are at the mercy of external forces. So they may frequently feel helpless, blame others for their problems and believe that life is unfair. So I feel like a victim mindset gets a little bit of a bad rap because I think it's thrown out there a lot like, oh, don't be such a victim, don't be such a victim. I want to tread a little bit carefully with this victim mindset because if you've been through a trauma or really hard stuff in your life or you're going through hard stuff in your life that might lead you to having a victim mindset. And that's ok. That is ok.

This is a safe place for us to chat through this stuff. All the mindsets that we have, it's ok to have them. I've definitely had a victim mindset. I've gone through phases where I've blamed everything but myself. Um, however, it helped me grow when I understood that I did have a victim mindset and I decided to take full and utter complete responsibility for my life and it has changed my life in so many positive ways. Um What did I want to tell you there? Yeah, a victim mindset. So it can come from what you've been through. So don't be hard on yourself. Um If you want to work on your victim mindset, it's really cool.

Like, you know, if you take full and utter responsibility for your life, even when things that happen to you, somebody has done them to you, um or they're out of your control, like for example, something really bad in work and you still take responsibility, life becomes a lot better. Um So here are some characteristics of a victim mindset. So Externalizing responsibility. So you tend to attribute your failures, hardships and experiences negative experiences to external factors. And you sometimes believe that others are responsible for the circumstances and that you have little power to change them people with a victim mindset mostly have a negative self image and see themselves as weak, powerless or unworthy.

Yes, I've seen myself as all those three. They may struggle with low self esteem and believe that they are undeserving of success or happiness. Yes. Me in a nutshell. Feelings of helplessness. Those with a victim mindset often feel powerless and believe they have no control over their lives. They may not take active steps to improve their situations because they see themselves as being trapped or limited by external circumstances. They blame others for their problems and difficulties and they resist growth, which is the biggest one that I want to chat to you about. So people with a victim mindset, resist personal growth and development because they believe they're unable to change their circumstances and they might be resistant to seeking help. You know, you do see that a good bit.

Especially when I meet people trying to become fit and healthy and from the get go from the very start, they are resistant to doing anything different to what they've done. And yes, they have joined and you know what, I don't feel any way bad or like you, you can only feel empathy for people like that and you can only feel empathy when you understand what it is. And I used to get really frustrated with people that would want to start like the fitness program and from the get go not want to do anything. And it's only since understanding mindsets and understanding that I have all these mindsets that you understand that it's just the mindset that's holding them back and they just don't know that.

And you can only feel complete empathy for somebody who wants to change but doesn't change. Um So, yeah, so overcoming a victim mindset involves shifting your perspective and taking ownership of one's life. One of the best books I've ever read Straight Line Leadership. Straight Line Leadership. It's an incredible book. I'm not sure you can get it in Ireland. Um Straight Line Leadership, highly, highly recommend it great for everyone in the family and um excellent, excellent book and really just is one of those books that just says it straight. Um And helps you see things straight and be straight and it encourages you to take responsibility for your life and taking responsibility for your life can be achieved through self reflection, again, challenging those thought patterns and um and coming up with new different belief systems and thought processes and that's you on your step to personal growth and change.

Oh, I am tired now. I hope you found this podcast episode helpful, talking about the different mindsets and the way in which they hold us back. If you're listening right now and you are struggling with your unhealthy habits, you're struggling to get fit, you're struggling to stick to something to be consistent. I want you to know that it's never you being lazy or you having a lack of willpower, there's something more going on and when you figure out what that something is, you can start to change. And so many people I find try to fix the thing by trying harder. However, sometimes it's about taking a step back and listening to yourself and going hang on a second. What's going on here? Why am I finding this such a struggle?

Why am I not having a breakthrough? And for some of you listening, it might be something as simple as realising that your perfectionist tendencies or your all or nothing tendencies or your victim mindset. Oh, I even feel bad saying that or your um what was the first one? Um all or nothing said that negative mindset is, is holding you back. So pay attention to that and remember like the four step process. So number one, get into that lovely sense of self awareness. You don't need to do any extra time to do that. Number two, start to challenge those thoughts. Number three, come up with better thoughts. Number four, practice gratitude, joy, living in the moment. I hope you have a wonderful, wonderful day. Thank you so much for listening. If you found this helpful and you know, somebody that you think might find it helpful, I would absolutely love for you to share it with them. Thank you so much and I'll see you on the next episode.

About the author 

Jessica Cooke

I love drinking coffee, and my favourite thing in life (apart from my family) is to help women to get fit, healthy and learn how to love themselves again. (oh, and also I love playing with my two Miniature Schnauzers, Buster and Ozzy)

I’ve coached more than 6,140 women over 14 years get fit, healthy and learn how to love themselves again.

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