Do you find yourself thinking, “I have to do this!” while deep inside you are dragging, resisting, or avoiding every possible step to actually do the task at hand?
Do you ever think, “they are making me do this?” “They” could be your teacher assigning you homework, your boss giving you an undesirable project, your parents requiring some family obligation, or your church group, friends, or the I.R.S. requiring some action on your part.
Maybe you feel this way about various activities such as making dinner, cleaning your home, working out, going to work, or even paying taxes. The mental overlay of “have to” or “they are making me” on any activity saps energy and turns a simple task into an undesirable chore and puts you in a victim mindset of powerlessness.
When obligations and responsibilities weigh heavy and you start blaming others or victimizing your situation, you are reinforcing concepts that:
- Life is difficult
- I never get what I want
- People can’t be trusted
- I am not responsible for my life
How do you regain your personal power and control of your life when you have gone down that rabbit hole of feeling powerless and thinking “poor me?”
The key is to move a “have to’s” into a “want to’s.”
When you want to do something, you are in charge of your own life and take responsibility for your life. Shifting out of a victim mindset can be a simple attitude adjustment guided by the following questions:
I have to (A) _______________
If I don’t do (A) __________ , then (B ) _____________ will happen.
And if (B)___________ happens, then I will feel (C)_____________.
Continue to dive deep and ask your “And then how would I feel?” until you get to your worst feeling.
So I would rather do (A) _____________ than experience (Z)_________ ( Feeling )
Therefore I choose to (A).
Here is an example:
I have to go to the gym to work out today.
If I don’t work out, then my weight will change and I won’t feel good.
If I don’t feel good, then I will feel depressed and unhappy.
If I feel depressed and unhappy, then I will feel like a failure.
I would rather workout than feel like a failure.
So I choose to workout today.
When you make a choice to do something, you are changing a “have to” into a “want to.” You are strategically shifting your victim mindset to a creator mindset and affirming your internal locus of control – that you are in charge of your life. This will lead to greater satisfaction and provide increased meaning to your life.