“I don’t like mayo”

If you ask me about mayo, I’ll tell you I’m not a fan. But, that wasn’t always the case. There was a time when I liked mayonnaise as much as the next gal. On a chicken sandwich…yum. Slathered on a Jimmy John’s sub…delish. Cleverly mixed with ketchup to make that secret yummy sauce on a Whopper…Sign. Me Up. The more the better.  Mayo, what’s not to love?

But there came a time about 4 years ago that I decided to make a commitment to taking care of myself. And, at the tippy top of that list, was getting to a healthier weight. I actually reached my heaviest weight 10 years ago, before having kids, but that’s a story for another day. The point is, 4 years ago I was nearing that highest point, was not healthy and not happy. It took a lot of work and a lot of time, but I lost 50 lbs. There were lots of techniques and tools involved in doing that, but one little thing I did was DECIDE that I didn’t like mayonnaise anymore.

I know you’re thinking that’s crazy, but it’s absolutely 100% true. I told myself I didn’t like mayo, and anytime I encountered it I said I didn’t like it. I started ordering from menus asking to leave it off and replace it with dijon or nothing at all. And you know how people say that if you hear something enough times, you start to believe it’s true? Well, they’re fricken’ right. Over time, I’ve actually convinced myself I don’t like it. I’ve even gotten to the point that it kind of grosses me out in large quantities.

In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m the sort of person that overthinks and over analyzes everything. So, I find it fascinating how much control we have over ourselves, our thoughts, our preferences.  I really believe I can do anything I put my mind to, and that includes changing my mind.

And, the thing is, this isn’t an anomaly. I’ve convinced myself of many things in my life. I used to be scared to death of public speaking. One day I realized that if I wanted to be successful in my career, I’d have to get over it. So, I started telling myself it didn’t scare me. I would literally repeat it over and over in my head “I’m not afraid of public speaking.” And, over time, I believed it. And now it barely bothers me at all. I have dozens of other examples of this sort of “self talk” or coaching or whatever you want to call it.

People often talk about the impact our words have on others, and I whole heartedly believe words can change lives. But, I don’t think we always realize how much the words we’re saying to ourselves are shaping and changing our own lives. So, here’s to convincing ourselves we can quit what makes us unhappy and overcome what stands in our way.

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