“Those who say life is knocking them down and giving them a tough time are usually the first to beat themselves up. Be on your own side.” ― Rasheed Ogunlaru
I bet the title REALLY got your attention! In a recent offering of my “Your Best Year Yet” Workshop, my friend and colleague, Betsi, shared with our group that she constantly guards against what she calls “Betsi’s Five F’s”. These five F’s usually go hand-in-hand with self –criticism. The five F’s demonstrate where we are beating ourselves up, and always show us where we are “fighting” against life (rather than living in the flow of Life—Flow is an F of a different kind! )
Successful people have very low levels of self-reproach. They learn from challenges and mistakes, forgive themselves (another F) and move on. They don’t waste their precious energy and resources on beating themselves up.
Betsi’s Five F’s are:
- and Forcing.
Whenever these five F’s show up in her life, Betsi knows there is something she needs to look at and shift.
Fear: You may have heard the old saying that FEAR is: False Evidence Appearing Real. When Fear shows up, it often means two things: 1. We are in the unknown and 2. We have decided the outcome of this situation or event will be negative. Either way, fear can stop us from moving forward. (Another F). This week, embrace the unknown and stop buying into false evidence.
Fatigue: When fatigue shows up it often means either we are literally not getting enough rest, or we are putting more energy than is needed into the situation. We are trying too hard and getting little return. Both are signs that we are depleting ourselves and not taking proper self-care. This week, make getting enough rest and using the right amount of energy priorities!
Failure: There is no failure, only feedback (oh, look! Another F!) The view that we are failures is simply an opportunity to rebuke ourselves further. Feedback, however is a realistic review of where we lack skillfulness with a situation. It is an opportunity to gain knowledge and move forward more effectively. Feedback is important. Self-rebuke is another form of self-mutilation. This week, give up rebuke and explore what the feedback is telling you about your skillfulness.
Frustration: Frustration always shows us where we have given our power away to someone or something else. It hints at where we have decided we have no control over a situation, or where we feel helpless. Frustration is often anger we feel we cannot express or acknowledge. Frustration is a form of lashing out at “what is”. Frustration requires us to take a deep breath, step back, re-focus (focus is yet another F), and start again.
Forcing: Forcing shows us where we are trying to push Life into responding to what we want it to be, instead of working with Life as it is. Forcing is a form of violence against Life itself. Forcing shows us where we lack trust. This might be trust in ourselves, or trust in Life. Because of that lack of trust, we try to Force something into existence. Forcing is the opposite, and the destroyer, of Flow. This week, just stop forcing.
This week’s success tip is: Stop beating yourself up, take the feedback, forgive yourself, and be on your own side! Over the next 7 days, actively stay on guard for all the ways Betsi’s five F’s show up in your life. Make an active effort to seek them out and remove them. This week, stop F’ing yourself (unless the F’s you are using are feedback, flow, focus, forgive, and move forward!)
- Take a few minutes to think about all the different ways Betsi’s five F’s show up in your life.
- Think about what you are going to do to counter or reduce them if/when they show up this week.
- As you go about your week, stay on guard for times when you catch yourself engaging in one of Betsi’s Five F’s.
- When you catch yourself, implement your plan to counter or reduce the F that has shown up.
- Begin the process of removing the self-violence from your life.
- At the end of the week, use the weekly review process outlined in the About tab to review your progress.
For more information on my wonderful friend, Besti, visit her website at: http://www.betsi.ca. (Betsi, thanks for the wisdom and the inspiration!!)