What did you do differently? My doctor asked, glancing at my chart before looking back at me. The change we both noticed was hard to miss. Rewind just year I was in a completely different place. Then, my palms were covered with painful cuts from the psoriasis that had taken up residence there. At the same time plantar fascistic had made simple things like walking painful. Both my hands and feet were afflicted. I was a mess! Every ounce of me wanted to crawl under a rock and wait until I felt better. The catch is, “better” doesn’t pull us off of the couch or come find me under the rocks where we hide. We have to go find it instead.
Five months ago, I decided enough was enough. I needed to begin to make changes or I would continue to let life drift while I had my pity party. My transformation wasn’t a silver bullet. There was no magic pill or as seen on TV save-the-day product to purchase for three easy payments of $19.95. Instead, my change came with breaking those pesky old tapes – you know the ones none of us like to admit influence us. My results came by changing how I complete three powerful sentences.
1. I am…
I am…. How we finish the sentence “I am” drives what we do and how we do it. When we allow past mistakes or hurts to complete the sentence, we give new life to old injuries. Saying “I am a failure” because things haven’t gone right in the past, takes an incident from our past and makes it our compass for the future. Instead, we can acknowledge those same things but say “I am an overcomer” because we’ve survived that thing. When we take time to finish “I am…” with positive truths, we empower ourselves for the future rather than anchor ourselves to the past. Transformational speaker, Lisa Nichols’ has an exercise she calls “Exposing the Lie” which is a powerful exercise to weed out the negative chatter we too often hold on to. I love the way she encourages us to do an inventory of the lies we tell ourselves so that we can break those old tapes.
This summer I changed how I answered “I am..” It’s impacted several areas of my life. “I am an encourager” has caused me to pursue creating and posting uplifting memes every day.(If you haven’t joined me on Instagram, I invite you to join me there.) It’s caused me to jump out of bed with purpose because I say to myself that I am pursing my purpose. I also chose to say I am choosing healthy living and will make choices to give me the energy and stamina to follow my calling. I am a believer and will trust that God has a plan for me. I need to do my part to be ready to step into where he calls me. I let faith fill in the blank as well. I am a child of God. I am His creation. Changing how I respond to “I am” is the change that I made that has helped me lose close to 40 pounds since mid-summer.
Friend, we can find the most powerful completion to our sentence when we flip open the pages of our Bibles. God says we are never alone, that we can be strong and courageous, that we are saved, redeemed, forgiven. He says He created us for a purpose, and that we are a new creation. We may have had a bumpy past, but He gives us a bright future. Why not take time to write out several responses to “I am…” Refuse to allow a single response be negative. If you first write a negative response, counter it and rewrite it. If you struggle in this area, I encourage you to watch the Lisa Nichols’ clip and do the exercise she explains.
2. Today I will…
Today I will… Once I wrote out nearly a page full of responses to “I am…” I made a declaration of what actions or activities would be priorities today as a result. But our answers to “I will” are not limited to tasks. I will statements can be anything from an attitude we want to foster, habits we want to foster, or todos that we know will need our attention. Written goals are 42% more likely to get done just because they’ve been written down. Why not put some motivation on the page and declare what you will be or what you will accomplish today.
3. Tomorrow I will…
Tomorrow I will… Momentum is built when taking one step after the next. It’s not enough to review who we are and where we are right now, we need to consider where we are going. I don’t know about you, but when my alarm clock goes off in the morning, if I haven’t thought ahead to what will come next, the snooze too often can come next. I’ve found it incredibly empowering for my morning if at bed time I jot down a few things to serve as mile markers for the next day. Not only does it make getting out of be on dark winter mornings a bit easier, but it give me traction in the new day in the direction of my goals. Tomorrow I will statements, like the statements for today are not limited to tasks. The responses to this sentence can be reminders of how we responded to our “I am” answer. An example might be “Tomorrow I will remember that I’m a child of God and that I have purpose.” Or “Tomorrow I will capture negative self-talk and not allow my old tapes to influence my future.
These three sentences can be used to break old tapes you’ve held on to that have spoken negativity into your life. Too often we allow someone’s unkind words, or our own, haunt us and shape who we are. It’s time to break free! My life has been transformed by these three little sentences – I am, Today I will, Tomorrow I will. Will you try? Will you let them encourage, motivate, and transform you too?
I’d love to hear from you. Click to comment and join the conversation. Have a friend that could benefit from using these three sentences to break old tapes? Why not share this post and encourage them too.
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