I’m going to let you in on a huge secret on how to make creating change in your life a lot easier. I’m going to teach you the art of addition in order to subtract.
The Flaws of Direct Subtraction
Losing. Ending. Removing.
No one likes, enjoys, or takes pleasure in losing, ending, or removing things from their lives. Even if it’s for the best. It’s incredibly tough for human beings to take things out of their lives – to let go.
How do you feel about these statements? Feel in the blanks based on your own experiences.
You can’t eat this ______________ or that __________________food anymore.
You need to stop hanging out with this __________________ or that _______________ person.
You need to stop doing this _________________________ or that__________________ from now on.
You can’t have this ________________________ or that _________________________ in your life anymore.
The above examples are loaded with words we don’t like. Words like “need,” “can’t,” and “stop.”
Plus, as you probably already know, asking yourself to NOT think of something – doesn’t work. It only makes you think about it.
Telling myself to not eat chocolate – only makes me think about chocolate and if I’m thinking about chocolate – I’m gonna want to eat it.
Go ahead. Don’t look at your phone right now. Don’t think about your cute pet. Don’t wonder about what color underwear you’re wearing. Just don’t. How did that go?
It’s pointless and ineffective.
The Negative Impact of the Word “No”
Did you know, flashing the word “No” for less than one second, creates immediate release of dozens of stress producing hormones and neurotransmitters in your brain? Those chemicals immediately interrupt the normal functioning of your brain, impairing logic, reason, language processing, and communication.
That’s no good. I mean, that’s bad.
No staying up late.
No _________________ fill in the blanks.
How does that make you feel?
We are more motivated to stay away from pain than we are to seek pleasure. We’ll do whatever it takes to avoid hearing the word “no.”
Jacked Up Programming
We are not programmed to gain – we are programmed to forego loss. We pay more attention to negative events than positive ones. We tend to learn more from negative outcomes and experiences. We even tend to make decisions based on negative data and believe the negative information more than the positive inputs. All to avoid additional loss.
This type of jacked up programming means you miss out on possibilities and opportunities.
Your programming might be so jacked up – you SEEK out ways to confirm and validate your negative bias.
Solution. Add to Subtract. Positive over Negative.
Let’s kill two birds with one stone. Let’s remove what doesn’t serve you and let’s fix your jacked up programming. Let’s do some neuroplasticity!!
You’re going to add as many first times and new experiences as it takes to subtract (over time) all of the things, behaviors, habits, and people who don’t serve, benefit, and help you grow, improve, and win in life.
Adding first times and new experiences leads to having more of them. It isn’t necessarily about all of those first times being different from each other. They can be part of a series of Earned Firsts which involve picking up entirely new hobbies, sports, activities, and areas of study.
As you are engaged in adding lots of new and subtracting what doesn’t belong anymore – you’ll be reprogramming your brain to look for opportunities and possibilities. You’ll improve your confidence, your health, your outlook and you’ll open up your mind, increase your growth mindset, acquire new skills and become an entirely different person.
You’ll start realizing there’s more to gain in life than lose. There’s more positive than negative. You’ll re-frame your perspective. Reprogram your thinking/brain.