In my new-found adulthood I have decided to continue reading self-help books. I want to be the best me I can be, and I am self-aware enough to know that I will need a little help along the way.
I just finished this book:
And it’s awesome!
Jen Sincero is a success coach, and she has wonderful advice for anyone who wants to start living their life on purpose. Her writing is funny, informative, understandable, and generally pleasant to read. Her advice is good whether you’re trying to make more money, lose weight, start a new business, or figure out how to travel the world.
The book is broken up into five parts, starting with “How you got this way” and ending with “How to kick some ass.” I want to fill you in on everything I’ve learned from this book, but literally each chapter is full of golden nuggets. Instead, I’m going to encourage you to buy it and give you some of my most favorite lessons (a list!).
Your subconscious is a lot stronger than you think.
Most people live life listening to and being guided by their conscious minds. This is the part of you that makes decisions and processes information. The subconscious part, according to Sincero, believes everything, and is led by instincts and feelings. We store a lot more in our subconscious than we know, and those things we store can seriously effect us. For example, if your subconscious believes money is evil (maybe because as a child you saw that money was the cause of all your family’s arguments), no matter how much you say you want it, you will self-sabotage so you don’t get it. Sincero teaches us,
“[W]hen our subconscious beliefs are out of alignment with the things and experiences we want in our conscious minds (and hearts), it creates confusing conflicts between what we’re trying to create and what we’re actually creating [italics mine].”
It’s so easy once you figure out it isn’t hard (Chapter 17).
This chapter reminded me a bit of Wolf of Wall Street–that whole quote about the stories we tell ourselves stopping us from reaching our full potential. Sincero simplifies it to:
“What you choose to focus on becomes your reality [italics mine].”
There are so many people harboring negative stories about themselves. These beliefs are easily identifiable because they start with phrases like “I always/never…” “I suck at…” “I wish…” “I’m trying to…” (as opposed to actually doing). Once you figure out what your stories are, you have to identify what it is you think you’re gaining from them. Is saying you never have time for the gym allowing you to feel comfortable watching TV on your couch for three hours a day? Is saying you can’t make money letting you play the broke victim? Get rid of your stories! Or better yet, rewrite them.
Sincero’s list for accomplishing this:
- List off your old stories that you’ve gotten into the habit of thinking and saying.
- Journal about the false rewards you get from them.
- Feel into these false rewards, thank them for their help, and decide to let them go.
- Take each false reward and write a new, powerful story to replace it with.
- Repeat this new story, or affirmation, over and over and over until it becomes your truth.
- Behold your awesome new life.
“The people you surround yourself with are excellent mirrors for who you are and how much, or how little, you love yourself.”
This resonated with me so much. I used to say the phrase “I hate people” every single day. Obviously it’s everyone else with the problem, right? *rolls eyes* Sincero points out that whenever we are bothered or annoyed with another person, it is because we see something of ourselves in them. For example, in church yesterday there was this woman behind me who was super into everything. She was praying loudly with the priest, singing at the top of her lungs, and generally grating on my nerves. I was trying not to be a jerk about it (because I was in church and I had just read this part of the book), so I took a step back.
“Start noticing the things that drive you nuts about other people, and, instead of complaining or judging or getting defensive about them, use them as a mirror [italics mine].”
Ask yourself if you also do that annoying thing, or if it reminds you of something you try very hard not to do. Figure it out and shut it down; figure out how and who you need to be in order for this thing not to bother you. For me, I realized I was getting annoyed because I really want to strengthen my faith and my relationship with God, and her enthusiasm was just reminding me how weak I still am in that department. After that, I tried to appreciate her way of praising, and even hoped I could reach her level someday. BAM, feeling of annoyance gone, happier me.
I could go on and on about this book, but I really think you should just get it and read it for yourself. Especially if you are in a place in your life right now where your self-awareness might be lacking. In my opinion, self-aware people are some of the best.
Thanks for reading, everyone!