I’m Going On A Diet—A Mental Diet

Back in May, I committed to reading one chapter of How To Win Friends & Influence People and applying the chapter’s principle every week until I completed all 30 chapters. I made it to chapter four of the Dale Carnegie book and then I took a sharp left turn into discussing other topics on this blog. That said, I didn’t stop applying personal/professional development principles IRL.

The past few days I have been working on the art of getting to the point. I was extremely surprised to find that most of us have a hard time staying focused, particularly when we are asked a question. It seems we are intent on answering every question under the sun before we answer the one that was asked of us. (Seriously, pay attention for 24 hours and tell me it’s not true.) But worry not—like a good millennial I took to Twitter to share this observation with advice to help us get past this:


My next goal is to go on a mental diet. The concept, which originated from Emmet Fox’s The 7 Day Mental Diet and was popularized by Tony Robbins’ book Awaken The Giant Within, consists of eliminating negative thoughts and “consuming” only productive, positive thinking. If all goes well, I will be taking control of my mental and emotional states, improving my life by simply changing my outlook.

Most of us are naturally wired to see things from a “glass half empty” perspective first. (Remember how hard it was for me to go a week without criticizing, condemning or complaining?) It takes a conscious effort on our behalf to look at the positive side of a situation. Furthermore, it takes practice and repetition to rewire our brains toward defaulting to positive language. The good news is that the more we do it, the easier it becomes to be more positive and the more positive we are, the happier we feel. It’s a win-win.

This week listen for negative phrases. (They usually come with words like “no” and “not”.) As you hear one or when you catch yourself about to say one, find the positive way of conveying that same message and use that instead. Take a look at these 11 everyday phrases that have been reworked from negative to positive for inspiration.

Have a good example? Leave it in the comments below or send me a tweet @margaritakwells. And now, for your quote of the day:

“It’s not knowing what to do, but doing what you know.” —Tony Robbins

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