Have you every attended a seminar or read a book that could change your life and yet a year later your life remained the same? Have you ever looked at your New Year’s Resolutions from last year and noticed they can be re-used for this year because you haven’t changed?
Join the club. The majority of people who buy motivational books and courses never finish them and even fewer ever use the information in them. Most people who lose weight gain it back. I can personally testify to that.
So, how do you make change permanent? By using the acronym BDAMD (like, ‘be damned’): Believe, Decide, Affirm, Meditate, Do. BDAMD is perfect because if you don’t follow it, you are damned. So here are the details.
“No wonder you can’t do it, you acquiesce to defeat before you even begin”-Pai Mei, Kill Bill: Vol 2
Think of some successful people you know. What is their confidence level like? I’ve noticed that all the successful people I know are extremely confident. They believe they can succeed. Because they believe they can succeed they do whatever it takes to succeed and it usually works. So a big part of the BDAMD process focuses on building belief and confidence, which brings us to step two.
Will Smith covers several of these steps in this interview. Hear how he decides and what is mindset is when on a treadmill, which is his action.
You have to make a decision. Don’t try anything, do or don’t do it. A decision is a commitment. You are saying, “This is what I want and I will do it!” Once you say you’ll try you are giving yourself a build in excuse to quit. Decide and tell yourself “I am going to do this no matter what!” Which brings us to step three.
A classic example of affirming from Yoda.
Your mind hears what you are saying. When you use weak word like try, maybe, cannot, hopeless, failure and retreat, you are setting yourself up for failure. These words train you mind to fail. Repeat affirmations such as: I can do it! I can overcome! I will succeed! I am bigger than my problems.
When you say your affirmations make yourself feel them. Pretend you are and actor playing a role in a movie of a strong, successful person. Say the affirmations like that person would say them.
A great source for affirmations is any book by Og Mandino.
4.) Meditate. There are incredible studies and testimonials about the value of meditation. However I want you to visualize yourself as already having whatever goal you are working on.
For example, if you want to lose weight, visualize yourself as thin wearing new clothes from an expensive store. Visualize your feet on the scale and your ideal weight showing up on it. Visualize the car, home or life you want and make yourself feel what it feels like. Why is this important? Good question.
The science of neuroplasticity says that we can retrain the neuro pathways in our brain. For example, if you hear a specific song on the radio and it makes you happy and think of a concert you went to when you were young, that is a conditioned pathway in your brain. If you find out a person you went to the concert with just died it is possible for you to hear the song and now feel sad instead of happy. That is a trained pathway in your brain.
One way to train these neuropathways is through meditation and visualization. If you see and feel yourself as successful then you build new pathways in your brain which will help you with believing you can change and taking action. You don’t act because you believe. When you believe, you will act.
5.) Do. You can skip all of these steps if you are already taking action but, again, most people are not. The above steps will transform you mind and make you believe you can accomplish your goals and you will act on them.
Ultimately, action is all that matters. But the reason you don’t act is you don’t believe. BDAMD is the path to condition yourself to believe, do and succeed.
Here is a great talk by Martin L. Rossman, MD, of the University of California for further study about brain neruoplasticity of the brain.