What if all your recent failures were the fault of a brat? What if that brat is hiding in the maze of your thoughts? In this article I'll explain how to silence it and make a difference.
"It's never too late to be what you wanted to be."
As a child, I must have been no more than 4 or 5 years old, every time I accompanied my mother to go shopping, I dragged her to the nearby toy store and here I implemented the most advanced childhood persuasion strategy known to mankind: the frigne.
In spite of my perseverance and my notable "crying" commitment, I must say that I have never been particularly successful in convincing her, except once. Probably taken for exhaustion, one day my mother asked me the long-awaited question: "Okay GetPersonalGrowth, what do you want to take?". And I promptly replied: "Everything, I want everything mom".
Remembering that episode always makes me smile, but I wanted to tell you about it for a very specific reason. In fact, I was thinking back to all those times when I postponed the alarm, I skipped a workout, I postponed a commitment. On each of these occasions a little voice has crept into the meanders of my mind, a plaintive and insistent little voice, a little voice similar to the whining of that 5-year-old child who wanted everything immediately.
If you can't keep your good intentions for more than 48 hours, if you have more lenses than a reflex camera but spend your days on an Eminflex, if you feel in a quagmire where nothing changes but everything sinks, this article was written for you. A few whistles and continue reading ;-)
When the whiny child directs your life
“There is within me I don't know what divine and demonic spirit; […] And it is like a voice that I have within me since I was a child; which, every time it makes itself heard, always dissuades me from something I'm about to accomplish, and never makes me proposals. "
Plato (Apology of Socrates, 31d).
Human beings have always been subjected to the whims of that whiny child who dwells in each of us. In the book "In search of lost cuddles", Julius Caesar Jacob provides a masterful description of the child's personality (better known to GetPersonalGrowth readers with the nickname of" Frigno Frignonis "):
“The child is the most unlucky person in the universe. And, tragically, he knows. When you hear someone tell you he's a loser, that the world is angry with him, that he's the most loser in the universe, know it, he's talking to you child. If you are under the age of twelve, this is normal. If she is over the age of twelve it is worrying. If he has more than eighteen it is tragic. If it has more than twenty it is a mess. […] The problem is that the child is unable to face life and its difficulties, its dangers, its obstacles, its trials, its responsibilities alone. He is unable to dominate the environment that surrounds it. Because he is unable to bear the frustrations that the environment imposes: the difficulties, the fatigue, the defeat, the loss, the pain. Because it hasn't self-confidence and he is convinced that he cannot do it. "
In short, the personality of the whinny child emerges every time life puts us to the test:
- The whinny child doesn't give a damn about yours target, especially if they require some form of sustained commitment over time. He is only interested in escaping the discomfort and as soon as the first difficulties arise he begins to whisper to you: "but who makes you do it?", "It's not worth it", "today you deserve a break".
- The whiny child is a fervent supporter of procrastination. It makes you believe that there is no rush, that tomorrow you will be incredibly productive and quietly make up for the time lost so far. The truth is often quite different (word of Stephen King).
- The whining child is a healthy carrier of "sorry". When you come face to face with your responsibilities, rest assured that he will always find a perfectly rational excuse to help you slip away. You do not believe me?! I bet a zillion euros that you have used at least one of in the last week these excuses.
The whiny child is therefore deeply rooted in us, but it is still a single facet of our personality. Maybe right now it's the dominant facet, but it doesn't necessarily have to be in the near future. We can choose not to be that child. We can choose to don't listen to it.
Yes André, but how ?! Don't you have one of those practical and effective techniques of yours to silence 'I'm frigno frignonis ?! I would like to take 2 and a half ounces. Thanks.
"The secret to success is choosing the right habits and having just enough discipline to train them."
I admit, the image of the samurai with iron self-discipline and indestructible resilience has always fascinated me, but the truth is that entrusting our change exclusively to discipline does not work: the more we stiffen, the more we try to silence the whinny child in us and the more he turns with unexpected ferocity, burning days of hard progress in a few moments (I told you about a very similar mechanism also in the article onself control).
However, there is an approach to prevent the whinny child from directing our lives, without at the same time turning us into frustrated and repressed automatons: it is theselective self-discipline.
I recently suggested inside by GetPersonalGrowth Gary Keller's book entitled "Just one thing". Among the various strategies suggested, the one I have experienced most successfully was that of selective self-discipline. Specifically, the author compares our self-discipline to the battery of a smartphone: when the battery is full, we can quietly silence the whiny child, carrying out all our good intentions. But when the battery is low, Mr. Frigne takes over and leads us to replicate the (wrong) behavior patterns that we know best.
The secret, therefore, is to become aware of this "recharge cycle" of our self-discipline and to exploit the limited reserves of willpower available to us to form patterns of behavior (read "habits") that are functional to achieving our goals.
'Mazza André, now you speak like a professor! Listen, in other words, what do I have to do to prevent whining from always sending everything to pu… crazy ?!
Simply put, selective self-discipline means:
- Focus on one habit that brings us closer to our goals.
- Practice this habit at the morning, when the self-regulatory reserves are at their maximum.
- Leverage our willpower only long enough to form a habit.
That's it. And guess what ?! We have already seen the ideal tool for exploiting the principles of selective self-discipline: yes, exactly, I'm talking about #sfida90901. If you have not already done so, you can adopt this "format" not only to carry out a specific project, but also to establish a new habit.