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Self Talk: Pushing Yourself

I know this forum isn’t really about psychology, but i was wondering what do you guys do when you have to push yourself into unknown and your mind starts telling you to quit. you know negative self talk.

See i have this awful tendency to automatically start thinking negatively when i think about future challenges… like what are the cons of this and that, instead of thinking about positive outcome and i REALLY want to change that as i think i’ve developed
a case of anxiety and i would really want to get my thinking into right direction.

so if you have any ideas (books, activities, …) how to, let’s say, transform your mindset into more positive one, please share them.

Thanks

When I set heavier weight on the bar. I do so in 10 lbs jumps. I know myself well enough that when I see another plate. I tend to think its heavier. But when I put tons of little plates I see them as being just some little ones. Even if I know they still add up to the same weight. Its silly I know but it works for me.

Another self talk is when I am about to load that weight on my back. I think in my head. Don’t you fucking be a pussy. You can fucking do this shit. If fat so and so can do so can you. Just fucking lift it. DO IT.

This words or something like that shout into my mind with good tunes blaring in my head. Then I take a hard deep breathe or two and up the weight goes and down it goes.

The whole time I am thinking one more you fucking pansy. You can do one more fucking rep. Keep it going. Get better. There are pics of huge BB’ers on the walls of my gym. And that gives me the power for one more rep even if I want to give up.

I think this is why I could never work out at home. The atmosphere is everything at the gym for me. And this drives me too.

i never talk to myself out loud.

but if im struggling on the leg press or something and need to squeeze out 5 more ill just tell myself something along the lines of if i quit this ill quit everything and if i can do it i can do anything. it might be OCD lol.

Nothing runs through my head.

Hmmm… well when I need to psyche up I pretty much think if I don’t do this I’m going to die. Then I clap my hands once, which somehow flips a switch in my head and makes me feel completly in control. I really don’t give a shit what anyone thinks about my practice but it works for me. I think alot of it came from watching to much Anime fight sceens, mainly DBZ, they’re notorius for doing weird shit to power up. So now it kinda works for me.

I just crank up the music, usually Stupify by Disturbed, get quiet, get under the bar and set up properly.

I foreced myself to stop getting nervous about weight, its only a number. 490 to 500 is NOT a big jump, but you know human mentality, its 100 lbs b/c its 4** to 5**, even though its nothing different thatn 410 to 420 really (thinking of squat mostly). I just think no matter how heavy it is, this is easy, even if its not. I get a little nervous, but nothing crazy.

I just focus on setting up properly and keeping form throughout the lift.

I just admire the way Ed Coan lifted. He never put on a show by yelling and acting like an animal. I guess I find it much more interesting to see someone quietly lift a weight more than someone who’s loud. Just shows how much you are in control of the situation.

Rage- I’ve read about that method somewhere. There may have been actual research involved, or not. It basically just says to pick a certain action/word/thought and use it as a switch, just like you said, to get you in the right mindset.

For me I have a black wristband with “Failures Not Flattering” that I always wear. That usually does it for “smaller” stuff. For PR’s and big weight I just focus on the middle of the bar so I can’t see the weight, tell my self to man up and take some deep breaths until I can feel my adrenaline kicking in.

I quickly think about how shitty it would feel to NOT hit the lift. It somehow fuels to make sure I get it done, because you just feel shitty when you miss a lift.

Fear of failure turned into a positive I guess.

When it comes to pushing myself through a tough part of a workout I play The Who’s Who Are You on my ipod. I believe who we are is revealed through our actions and I want to be someone who pushes past her fears & limitations. This song gives me an extra nudge. The first time, it happened to come on while I was struggling with some chin ups. I managed to finish the whole set & actually said outloud in the crowded gym, “That’s who I am, motherfucker!” (Dork alert!)

As far as future challenges, I used to have a lot of negative self talk, too. I decided to run an ad campaign on myself about learning to be positive. I started reading books & listening to tapes in my car of Og Mandino, Tony Robbins, Napoleon Hill, all those guys. Very Cheesy. I hid it from people because I felt silly. But you know what? It worked! I’m much more willing to take on new challenges now & having much more fun because of it. Good luck, Hrastnik!

Cheque drops…im kidding…kindof

I’m always ready to pull big deadlifts.

squatting on the other hand is quite the mental game.

[quote]RageInspired wrote:
Hmmm… well when I need to psyche up I pretty much think if I don’t do this I’m going to die. Then I clap my hands once, which somehow flips a switch in my head and makes me feel completly in control. I really don’t give a shit what anyone thinks about my practice but it works for me. I think alot of it came from watching to much Anime fight sceens, mainly DBZ, they’re notorius for doing weird shit to power up. So now it kinda works for me. [/quote]

DBz was the fuking shit man, they better not fuck up the live action movie… anyway, i also usually just blare music in the KSE style stuff works for me, also if im lifting at home and dont hit the number i wanted i flip shit and will either usually punch the cement wall or high kick the 110lb heavy bag and re-hanging a 110lb bag is no fun so i usually dont mess up twice in one workout cuz hanging that thing is a workout in itself, also sore knuckles or bleeding or broken ones are also no fun, but the only time i ever f’ed my hand was in a fight, so that was worth it, well kinda

I dont really use words, more of thoughts and emotions. I flash through allthe negative emotions I could feel from anything, mostly from not being good enough, being weak, having someone walk all over me, having two guys doubleteam your girlfriend, ect. I put myself in the mindset that this obstical in my way (the lift useually) will prevent that from happening, will destroy all who will do wrong to me, and a kind of cold rage sets over me and I get the set done.

Works best with squats or deadlifts, especially deadlifts.

I picture Arnold working out in front of me and laughing at me because I’m not as big and strong as him. Works with every excercise

And I play “Welcome to the jungle” of Guns 'n Roses in my mind and picture me with my dream body and hot girls dancing around me in coconutbikini’s whilst a huge lion roars like crazy.

That’s an interesting topic. Keep 'em coming.

[quote]Erasmus wrote:
I picture Arnold working out in front of me and laughing at me because I’m not as big and strong as him. Works with every excercise

And I play “Welcome to the jungle” of Guns 'n Roses in my mind and picture me with my dream body and hot girls dancing around me in coconutbikini’s whilst a huge lion roars like crazy.
[/quote]

That’s hilarious.

I once worked out in a gym where at every platform and power rack, there was a small plaque mounted above the mirror with the word “effort” printed on it. It was simple and unobtrusive and I didn’t even notice it for probably the first 20 minutes I was there. I was in the bottom of a squat and having a tough time of it when I first noticed it, and after that I went on to have one of the best workouts I can remember. Ever since then, the word effort has been my trigger and motivation.

I think of something super fucked up like my mom getting mugged and then finding that fucker on the street. Also Shug has a really good article on focusing.

I think positive inner dialogue can be useful, sometimes its the only worth while conversation I have versus talking to other people.

I think about my taxes.

Seriously though in my mind I tell myself I can do it. Positive internal coaching w/or w/o trigger phrasing is powerful stuff. Visualizing the lift(s) works amazingly well - at work just before leaving for the gym (I train in the PM after work) I take a few minutes to feel the knurling of the bar in my hands, the stink of the gym, beads of sweat pouring down my face, etc. & it gets me motivated…

Music I find somewhat distracting, IMHO, unless it is for cardio.

Good call on the visualizing the girls on coconut bikinis & Axl wailing in the background though.