Lessons Learned on the Trail

  • Stephanie Barnett

Nothing Changes, if Nothing Changes

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Nothing Changes if Nothing Changes”?

It’s as simple as that. So why, if it’s that simply put, do we all experience so much struggle in going from the decision that something needs to change, to actually taking action toward it?

Lucky for you, I’ve started a list of a few things that come to mind...

  • Fear of disruption - to routine, to relationships, etc..

  • Fear of discomfort.

  • Fear of changes we don’t anticipate or desire.

  • Fear of losing control - of time, finances, routine, people.

  • Fear of judgement (by others).

  • Fear of loss - of friends, community, environment.

  • Fear of failure, getting it wrong, not doing it “right”

  • Fear of…[insert thing here]

If I’ve learned anything after facing some fears, and making some pretty significant changes, it’s that your mindset is the key to how you see and experience everything. And guess what, YOU have control - all the time

How? Well, let me tell you.

It’s all about engaging in a process - a daily practice- that will build your mind muscles to stop giving so much energy to the negative thoughts and emotions at play.

What’s great is, this works with almost anything!

For example, when I’m at the gym on the treadmill, and the trainer instructs the group to increase the speed to a sprint. Initially I feel some fear, like I’m so tired already, I can’t do it, and if I try I’m going to go too fast and fly backwards off the back of the machine. 

In those moments, I recognize that I have a choice. 

I can either give in to those thoughts and let the treadmill control me, or I can take a breath, interrupt my negative thought process, and set my intention for the sprint. 

I literally feel myself engage my brain, check-in with myself and say (honestly, sometimes out loud), you control your body, your body doesn’t control you. And that simple check-in, primes my mind (and my body) for what’s ahead.

So, if you’re struggling with where to start toward the change you want, start with your mind. Just like conditioning your body, the key to conditioning your mind is practice practice practice.

Remember, “Nothing changes, if nothing changes”. Trust me, if you start with a mindfulness practice, you will see the effect trickle into other areas of your life. 

Not convinced? Well, then I invite you to commit to just 5 days of mindfulness practice and let me know how it went.

I’ve even created a little worksheet for you to use, so you have one less thing to think about! 

Grab the worksheet here!

Here are a few tips for success:

  1. Set a daily alarm each morning at a time you know you will have approximately 5-10 minutes to complete the exercise.

  2. Eliminate distractions so you can focus your energy on this one action (ex. while having coffee/tea, before the kids wake up, etc.)

  3. Share it with someone you trust (ex. Friend, partner, etc.)! The act of sharing what we’d like to see happen in our day sets up accountability, builds a support to lean on, and increases not only our energy, but the energy of the other person.

Finally, if you don’t feel like you have someone to share with, I would LOVE to be a part of your circle. Just send me an email and let me know what you’re working on. :-)

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