Thirteen Thoughts that Exhaust & How to Reframe to Reclaim the Energy they Drain

I am a firm believer that the right wisdom arrives at the right time.  I am constantly discovering books at the exact moment I need their message.  So as I sat at my desk to write this post, I was not surprised when I was inspired to open You are a Badass Every Day, by Jen Sincero, and found this sentence: “What comes out of your mouth comes into your life, so choose your words wisely.” 

I could NOT agree more.  In my eBook, Exhausted to Energized: Three Essential Elements, the element I call our Superpower is to “Reframe the thoughts that are sucking the life out of you.”

Here are thirteen typical thoughts that are sucking the life out of you if you’re thinking them, and how to reframe them to energize your life! These are only suggestions.  Reframe the thoughts into words that resonate for you, so they come naturally to you.

1) I need to lose weight.  

I wrote a whole post on this one because nobody enjoys losing.  Losing goes against the grain.  We strive to win!

2) I should go to the gym.  

Stop should-ing on yourself. 

There are a million things we want to do for a million reasons, but not one of them is something we ‘should’ do.  If you want to go to the gym to align with your healthy intentions, then get off the couch and GO!  But if your only reason to do something is because you feel you should, or someone else is telling you that you should; just don’t do it.

There is shame attached to ‘should.’  

The word suggests that there is something wrong with you if you choose not to do whatever it is that ‘they’ say you ‘should’ be doing.

You could do it.  If you wanted to because it aligns with your intentions.  Then it’s a choice.  You have the power to choose, or choose not to do it – instead of being shamed into doing something that you may or may not want to do.

If energizing your life or improving your body composition is on your to-do list, then going to the gym is one possibility in a long list of possibilities that might serve that end.  If going to the gym interests you, explore that!  If you’d rather have your teeth pulled, explore other options!

3) I miss eating… (something I am not eating for health reasons).

If we choose to focus on things that we miss, or want but cannot have, we cause ourselves misery.  When I discovered that I was allergic to my favorite food groups – dairy, sugar, and wheat – I thought my life was OVER because I could no longer eat pizza!  It took some energy to refocus my thoughts, and a lot of help from my coach, but now I focus on foods I love that love me back!  Mangoes and blueberries are every bit as satisfying to my soul as pizza, and so MUCH better for my physical body!

It’s all about where you place your thoughts, how you choose to look at things. I can continue to focus on my desire for pizza and feel miserable because I am denied, or I can focus on my desire to feel healthy and vibrant and feel GREAT because my food options are delicious AND nutritious.

This will take some time and a effort, but you are worth it!  

If you don’t believe me, try it for yourself!  Prove to yourself what the truth is.

4) I can’t do this!

If you believe you can’t, then it’s true.  You can NOT do it.

Tell yourself you can do it!  Even if you don’t know how, YET.  Allow yourself to believe that you are capable enough to find a solution; that you WILL figure it out, and then relax into the knowledge that a solution will present itself.

Telling yourself that you cannot do it severely limits your options, and increases stress.  

5) I’ll start tomorrow.  

It is physically impossible to start anything tomorrow because tomorrow is always in the future.  Reframing this one is simple.  “I’m starting now,” is a beautiful substitute, or “This is the moment I start to change my life.”  

Shifting your mindset NOW can be done even if the action steps must be put off a few more hours.  Practice using your power of focus to see the outcome you desire.  Hold the end result in your mind’s eye as a complete vision.  Allow yourself to feel the outcome you have already created.  You KNOW how thrilled you will feel once you are living in the authentic body you have reshaped to meet your own healthy intentions, or once you are holding your complete novel in your hands with your name on the cover, or have successfully transitioned to a profoundly fulfilling career.  

You cannot start tomorrow, so you may as well start today.  Just start living your dreams now.

6) I have to decide!

This was a kind of mantra for me for many years.  Every time the thought popped into my head, I felt my heart rate increase and a sense of DREAD that felt like I would explode if I didn’t decide, or if I picked the wrong choice!

I get to choose.  This reframe is empowering.

Being at choice is the greatest power we have.  If you hear the familiar ring of “I have to decide,” running through your head, gently remind yourself that you have the power to choose.  

We can’t make a choice that is “wrong” because our choice will either get the result we desire, or new information that allows more options (choices) to be available.

7) I really want to be/do/have (something) but…

Don’t let that big BUT follow you around!

When we name something we want and follow that with statements like “but this is the reality” or “but this is the reason I don’t have that yet,” we slow or STOP progress toward the thing that we want. 

Examples:

I really want to reach my goal weight, but I hate working out!
I really NEED more money, but I’m not qualified for a better job.
I want to meet my true love, but I need to lose weight first!

Picture your statement as a train engine on the track.  When we say “I really want X,” our powerful engine gets moving right away in that direction.  At the “but” in the statement, we place another train on the track moving in the OPPOSITE direction.  

That powerful engine is your energy, focused on what you want and moving in that direction.  Then the other engine pulls your energy in the opposite direction, splitting your energy and focus.  Can you imagine how much longer it will take the train to get anywhere if it has engines pulling both directions on the track?

If all of your energy is moving in one direction, you reach your goal more easily and efficiently.  Split your energy with those “but” statements and you might still reach the goal, but it takes longer, feels harder, and allows you more time along the way to lose interest or give up because the journey is taking too long.

8) I just hate “someone” because they are… (rich, thin, lucky, beautiful, smart, or living something I desperately want for myself…).

Love and BLESS that person for being a shining example of what is possible.  If they can do it, be it, have it, so can you!  You can physically see by their example that it’s possible.  It’s the things that we cannot see that require more energy to create.

9) I’m too tired to do that.

If you are too tired to do something you want to do, then things you do NOT want to do are draining your energy.  If you are too tired to do something you don’t want to do, then this is just an excuse, but your mind HEARS you and responds to your thoughts.

Remember, your mind creates your reality, so if you tell yourself repeatedly that you are tired, guess what?  Yep, you feel tired more often!

You can begin to reframe this one by shifting your intention.

10) When it comes to XYZ, I have NO self control! 
Or – I simply can NOT resist XYZ!

We are literally saying here that something has power over us.  We are handing our power willingly to XYZ.  Why would anyone choose to do that?

Because it’s an easy excuse to do what we want to do anyway.

Period.  In any other situation we fight to keep our power and stay in control, unless we want to do something and shift blame away from ourselves.

Giving away power is an energy drain. 
Keep your power.  Raise your energy.

I have control in every situation.  The choice is always mine.

The word ‘resist’ is tricky, too.  We really cannot resist anything because to resist it we must be focused on it.  Instead of saying, “I can’t resist free candy,” how possible is it to reframe it into something like: “I choose to eat healthy snacks like apples and dates because they align with my powerful intention to regain vital health.”  That feels pretty powerful to me.

Maybe you prefer something simpler, “I eat only the foods on this list,” and then you create a list of foods you LOVE that align with your health goals.

11) Why bother?

Why indeed?  Why do we bother to do anything?  Usually because it has value to us.  So if we are trying to motivate ourselves into doing something, it helps immensely to focus on WHY we are bothering.

“Why bother going to work?  My job is meaningless!  I hate my job.”

Reasons here may include, I need to pay my bills/feed my family.  So “why bother?” could be reframed to support that need/desire like this: “I appreciate the food on my table and roof over our heads.”  Or even more positive energy: “Better things are on their way to me, but until then I am happy to have a job that pays the bills, so I will put my best foot forward every day.”

Any thought that LIFTS your energy rather than depressing it is what you are shooting for. Why bother reframing thoughts that feel sucky?

12) I can’t afford that.

This one is insidious.  Not only will it become self-fulfilling, like “I’m too tired,” but it also renders us powerless, and nothing grates the human soul like being powerless.

Powerless means we have no choice.  When we say “I can’t afford that,” we are saying, “I have no choice.”  And that just FEELS awful.

And most of the time it’s not really true.  When we truly want something we look for funding options.  We allow ourselves to spend birthday money on something frivolous because it’s not meant to pay bills.  We save little bits here and there for something we value.  For big ticket items like a home or an education, we promise to pay for the rest of our lives because we WANT that home or education.

Of course there may be times this statement is true, like if you were shopping for a private jet and only earn $35,000 a year.  But I hear this statement in the grocery store as an excuse not to buy an item less than $5.  And the more you say it, the more true it becomes, so you can see the value in finding a reframe that works instead. 

Saying, “I am not spending my money on that,” is a perfectly valid option.  As are any of these:

I am financially unwilling to make that commitment at this time.
I choose not to buy that right now.
I choose to buy this, and I am going to save for a while to pay for it.
That’s not in my current budget, but if I really want it, I can find a way to afford it.
This hasn’t got enough value for me to invest my money in it.

See how each of those reframes makes it a choice? I could choose that if I wanted to, but I choose not to. What other ways can you choose to say this that keeps your power squarely in your own hands?

13) Why me?  Or more specifically, Why is this happening to me?

Ask yourself,   “What can I learn from this?” Or “Why is this happening FOR me?

Everything shifts.

You get the idea.

If a thought bothers you, or doesn’t feel good, it’s draining your precious, life-force energy.   If you want more energy for the things you enjoy, reframing that thought is a quick, effective method to do just that.

The first step is to simply be aware when a thought is draining your energy.  Then you have the power to choose that thought and allow it to drain you, or reframe it to empower yourself.

The choice always belongs to you.

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