Feb 9, 2022
Thanks for joining us back at the So Now What Podcast. And this brings me to the culmination of what I would call a mini lesson. If you're part of my membership, or a client of mine, you know that I like to segment my content and teach it to you in a lesson form so that each week you can build on something and implement it in your life. So this is the combination of some pretty important foundational things that we learn in my life coaching practice is really the basis of how you're going to make the changes in your life in order to move from feeling a lot of self doubt, a lot of sorrow and sadness around not being able to have a child and taking the life that you've been given and deciding to transform it and become the next best version of yourself as a woman without children. This week, we're going to talk about the Believe, Feel, Act cycle, the BFA cycle, which sounds kind of similar to a “BFN”, for those of us that have been through IVF cycles and transfers, many of us have gotten used to the BFN. But this is the BFA, we're taking big freakin action in our Believe, Feel, Act cycles. This cycle that I'm going to teach you about will help you to understand your current beliefs, and then give you the power to create new beliefs.
What you let yourself believe about your infertility in your childlessness is really what's going to create your future. And the Believe, Feel, Act cycle is how your brain processes anything that you encounter in the world. So as a review of our last couple episodes, which if this is your first episode you're catching, I would advise you to go back starting with episode 20, 21 & 22. And just kind of listen in on those and build every week on what the content is that we're covering off on. And then this will be kind of like that cherry on top. As we've gone through before and discussed. Everything that goes on outside of us, is the collection of facts and circumstances. And it's all super boring until our brain creates a belief about what's going on. So some of those boring facts in the world are your age, the number of IVF cycles, you've been through things people say or don't say to you how much money you make, all of these things have absolutely zero meaning to you until you have a belief about them. And as we talked about in Episode 21, your brain is designed to judge and come up with the negative first because it is a defense mechanism that we have compiled throughout the 1000s of years ago, when we used to have to protect ourselves and we were living in this much different environment than we live in today. So if you went through 7 years of fertility treatments and didn't have a child, you might be believing something like, “My future is gonna suck”, or you could believe, “My future is going to look a lot different than I thought, but I'm committed to creating a future I love”. The brain just goes along all day, having and creating beliefs for everything that it sees and experiences in the world. So it's actually quite simple. You have a belief about something that you experience in the world. And that belief creates a feeling inside of you like confused, disappointed or possibly excited. And based on how you feel you decide what action you will or won't take each day as a result of what you are believing and feeling. And that's basically the “Believe-Feel-Act” cycle. So how do you implement this into your life each day? The most important thing to do is your paper thinking because when you paper think you're going to give yourself pages of beliefs, pages of feelings, and actions that You did or didn't take. What you likely won't have, however, is very many facts. Because frankly, most of our lives are pretty boring. People say words, women are infertile babies are born, you weigh a certain amount. And our facts have no feelings. And they don't mean much unless you add in opinions, assessments of good and bad, and adjectives. I suggested in a previous episode that when you're working on identifying what the facts of your life are, versus your beliefs, that you go through your paper thinking, and circle the facts in your journal, and it will become super simple. When you circle your facts, read them back to yourself out loud. And if you could read those words in a court of law, and everyone would agree that they are factual and that they happened, then you have a fact. But if you read them back, and it seems snoozy and boring, you have facts. Because reminder, facts are not emotional, interesting, exciting or colorful. When you read your facts about your day or your past, if someone's on the edge of their seat or begging you to tell them more, you have not stripped it back enough to have a fact just yet. So here's an indication if you're doing it right. If after you get your facts circled, and you feel like you need to explain them, or you're feeling a little bit heated or let down when you review them, you've got a bit more paring down to do, because the most challenging part of looking at the facts, is realizing how much we embellish our life with our thinking. But once you get to the core and have some facts, we're going to be ready to put your thinking through a Believe, Feel, Act Cycle, you might have facts, like,
I couldn't have kids,
I got an invitation to a baby shower,
My best friend is pregnant. And next, you want to find one belief that you have about your fact. So here's a few examples of other common thoughts we have about ourselves and about our lives in general,
I'll never be good enough,
I've got nothing to look forward to.
Life isn't fair.
If they really loved me, they wouldn't do these things to me. Additionally, these are also beliefs,
Everything's gonna be okay,
I can figure this out.
We'll get through this. Your beliefs include all of your negative and positive self talk.
So I call my negative self talk, my Lost Girl Thinking, or “LGT”. It's the collection of things that I believed about myself during and after the conclusion of my fertility treatments. And I found that naming it has helped me to hear it better, and really know that it's just a bunch of beliefs that I can let go of at any moment.
The next thing that you can do is ask yourself, “When I believe that thought, how do I feel?”, and you'll see that on your journal pages.
Every belief has a feeling or an emotion attached to it.
Some very common feelings are happy, sad, angry, confident, overwhelmed, or excited. And the last part of the Believe - Feel - Act Cycle is action. Because when you have a belief pop into your mind, it makes you feel a certain way. And based on how you're feeling, you'll either take, or not take action. And the reason it's important for you to see this is that many of us have spent our lives blaming how we feel, on the things you do ON the world. And it's been frustrating for you because when something outside of you has to change for your life to be better than you feel like you have to control the world or give up and feel like junk. And the truth is most of us were really never taught that we are in control of our emotional life. And we get to decide what we want to believe. And when we take control over our beliefs and feelings. We can do things that we never thought were possible. There will be no more thinking that people make you feel bad. And you'll know that if you feel bad, it's your choice. And it's not because of someone or something else. I teach my clients how to take control over their beliefs about their life, so they can feel better and do better for themselves.
When I was miserable and blaming a 25 pound weight gain on my fertility medications that I hadn't taken in 4 years, I started paying attention to what was going on through my mind. I did paper thinking, and I started to listen to my mind.
I caught myself believing that I would never truly live a life I loved because I wasn't a mom.
I was telling myself that all of my failed cycles meant something was wrong with me, and that
I would never know love because I couldn't experience having a child of my own.
I truly believed that I was an awful person for feeling envious of people around me that were having babies.
It was no wonder that loving my life felt so hard when I was focused on thinking about failure all of the time. And really, it dawned on me that I had to quit believing, like the Lost Girl version of me, I needed to question my beliefs, instead of believing them, I owed it to myself to truly see my beliefs instead of just thinking this way. And soon, it became simple each time an old lgt came through. And I asked myself, if that was really true, I started to realize and started to challenge myself to really think on it. And I somehow was able to prove this old crappy belief system wrong. And that's when I just started, started to look at my current beliefs and simply asked myself, could I believe something new, and I decided to start using beliefs like, I can figure this out, instead of this will be so hard, or thoughts like one decision at a time, instead of this won't be enough or one day at a time, instead of I have so far to go. My old beliefs felt so true. And I could argue it was true. So many things that I believed seemed so true to me, because I believed them for so long. But it felt horrible.
I just did not want to argue for crappy beliefs anymore. I wanted to argue for the new Lana, for the new me. And arguing for me had such a payoff and arguing for my old junk, just dug deeper holes for me. So when you download The Guide to Loving Your Life Again, and use the Journal prompts I offer you, this is how I want you to do it, it's going to be super simple. I want you to take one of the journal prompts and write about it. And just circle the facts each day, after you're done with your paper thinking. And it's gonna teach your brain how to find the facts in your story. And then once you get good at that on paper, you'll start to do it in your daily life, just like when you're thinking about things. And it's so transformative when you get the hang of it. And you can stop yourself and ask:
What would I rather believe?
How would I like to feel?
What are some of the actions I would rather take or not take?
You might not be ready to start believing new things right away. But just getting good at seeing that there's a new way of believing helps you to realize that your current beliefs aren't the only truth out there. It will give you a ton of relief and hope. And just a word of caution. I've mentioned this before that when you start thinking in realizing what you're believing about yourself, you may want to judge yourself for the amount of unhelpful beliefs that are swirling in your brain. But please do not feel bad about it. We all have them. And it's okay.
I just want you to start paying attention to your beliefs. And I want you to decide which beliefs you want to keep and what you don't. And please don't be in a rush to change your beliefs right away. The goal is not to feel better right away. It's to have an understanding of your beliefs, so that you can feel anything you want on purpose, even negative emotion. And some days you just are going to feel bad and that's part of the human experience. But you will start to create evidence for yourself that at any time, you don't want to feel bad, you can just have the power to change the belief you have in your mind.
This is the culmination of one of the most powerful and transformative lessons that I was taught.
I suggest you listen to this a few times to discover the things that you might have missed. Because there's a lot of information I'm providing you today and within the last couple episodes. And you might even come back to this lesson every couple of weeks as you get more practice with the Believe - Feel - Act Cycle.
So get to Paper thinking and examining your brain. You are going to be so glad you have this skill. It's the backbone to loving your life again in creating a future full of meaning and abundance. And remember, it's never too late to discover your meeting. Have a super week. Thank you for listening to The “So Now What?” Podcast. If you are looking to love your life again, download my free Guide to Loving your Life Again at Stitchcoaching.com or you can go to my Instagram @stitchcoaching and you'll find it in my bio.