When I was little, there was a weekly coach trip to the beach in the school holidays from our estate. Every Wednesday morning, we'd all pile onto a coach and go to Bournemouth for the day. The lady who ran the trip also did a raffle on the way there; the prizes were the takings from the price of tickets, divided up into small food bags.
One year, when I was about 8 or 9, I decided I was going to win a prize on the raffle and use it to buy myself a big rubber ring. I spent the whole week telling everyone: "I'm going to win a prize on the raffle on Wednesday!" They all smiled and nodded and said "yes dear..."
And then Wednesday came... and I won the money and bought myself a great big, orange rubber ring!
Whenever someone talks about the power of positive thinking, or The Secret, or the Law of Attraction, I remember this. I remember that it is possible, and I know because I've done it.
A few weeks ago I had a massive crisis of confidence, not just in how I look but who I am; what I want be, whether I'm any good at the things I always wanted to do.
After a reasonable amount of time spent wallowing and doubting everything, I decided: enough is enough. Thirty-two years is plenty of time to spend feeling negative and miserable. So I stopped. I decided that 2014 would be the year that lots of awesome things would happen.
I've tried my hardest since then to maintain a positive attitude, to not let things get me down, and to rise above the things that used to upset me. And do you know what, so far several awesome things have happened!
As some of you know, I've started doing Boot Camp workouts with my friend Simon (of Simon Anderson Fitness Training) and blogging about it on Yahoo (if they ever actually get around to publishing it!). I have something of a love/hate relationship with exercise. I love how it feels when I'm finished; not so much a fan of that burning feeling in my lungs.
Earlier this week I listened to a speech by Abi Griffiths. She mentioned that when she was training for the Boston Marathon, she would always have a running commentary going on in her head that went along the lines of "and here comes mini-Bolt; she's rounding the corner and heading for the home straight, flying past, come on mini-Bolt!" She swears that this positive self-talk not only got her through hours of training, but also through the marathon itself.
This morning it was frosty and cold and I really didn't relish the thought of wandering over to the park with Simon to be tortured for an hour. Every single workout routine he comes out with makes me groan, knowing I'm in for a world of pain. Today we did three rounds of exercises. The first round went something like this:
Me: ugh, no.
Clock starts, we start exercising, everything hurts, I feel crappy, my chest is burning, I want it to just be OVER already!
Towards the end of that round, we had to do 20 lunges and I swear I thought my legs were going to just fall off my body.
Then we stopped for a break, and I thought about the positive thinking I've been applying elsewhere in my life.
The second and third rounds went like this:
Me: Woop! Yeah! I love burpees! Can't wait!
|Me dancing about like an idiot at Boot Camp this morning|
And so I whooped and cheered and danced and shouted my way through two more gruelling rounds of jump squats, lunges, running, planks, press ups and general madness. By the end of it, Simon was getting slightly worried!
But guess what; I did it! We were rolling a dice to decide our exercises, and at one point lunges came up three times in a row - meaning we did 20 lunges, ran to a cone and back, did 20 more lunges, and so on. And I did it. It hurt, but nowhere near as much as the first set did.
So there you have it. Positive thinking FOR THE WIN.