How to 'Freak Yourself Out'
A formula to Steal Motivation
"Reprinted with permission from the LifeWorks Group weekly eNews, (Copyright, 2004-2010), To subscribe to this valuable counseling and coaching resource visit www.LifeWorksGroup.org or call 407-647-7005"
By Dwight Bain, Certified Life Coach & Nationally Certified Counselor
Have you ever watched someone ‘freak themselves out?’ If you aren’t familiar with this expression, (which I learned from our teenagers), it means to be so totally stressed you can’t think or function normally. So, back to understanding why people ‘freak out’ since this self-destructive process steals motivation and makes life miserable. Why would people do things to make their life seem worse? Even more importantly, are you doing things that steal your energy and rob you of the motivation? Let’s find out fast if you are living the ‘freaked out’ formula so you can enjoy today, instead of just enduring it.
The ‘Freak Yourself Out’ Formula
First understand there really is a process to create a ‘freaked out’ experience where life goes from bad to worse. It follows a series of predictable steps. ‘Freaked out’ people have conditioned themselves to follow a pattern of behavior that makes every day chaotic and every situation a catastrophe.
They never allow themselves to relax and count blessings because their total focus is on their problems. They don’t actually have good days, just less miserable ones where nothing goes right because they are always looking for the worst possible scenario. It’s like the old saying, “Cheer up- things could get worse. So I cheered up and sure enough, things got worse.”
If the only things you are searching for are more problems, then you can be sure that you will find more than enough to stay stressed out and afraid. Here are the basics of the ‘freak yourself out’ formula and remember the more elements of the formula you have in place, the worse you will feel- guaranteed.
Spiritual Strategies to create Significant Emptiness-
1) Ignore God and anything that would inspire you to see beyond yourself. No Bible reading, no prayer, no journaling or meditation about the blessings of your life, which would stimulate gratitude. Avoid any type of function that takes you out of your own world or that might make you aware of the greater needs in the rest of the world. Just focus on yourself and ignore everyone else.
2) Skip going to any church or concert where you might find inspiration, and make sure to skip any activity that places you around positive or prayerful people. This includes any form of shared music or ministry, including helping the homeless or reaching out to other families who may be facing tough times. As long as you stay focused on yourself and your problems you can feel empty, afraid and alone.
Media Messages to steal Motivation
1) Focus on the evening news and current events, especially big tragedies you can’t do anything about. This approach is guaranteed to discourage you with negative media messages which often are full of depressing images that discourage you with a continual flood of bad news.
2) Make Hollywood celebrities your main focus, especially if they have multi-million dollar lifestyles that you could never hope to obtain. Keep up with the drama of every tiny detail of their lives; in fact spend more time studying what is happening in the lives of famous strangers than you do in studying what is happening in your own life or anyone in your family.
Physical Steps to Feel Miserable
1) Ignore your own health. You can do this faster by neglecting to get enough sleep. Push your body to the limits and never sit still to take quiet times to just sit and rest. Follow the rule that ‘burning out is better than rusting out.’ (Forgetting that either way- you are just out)
2) Stay idle. Sit still and watch TV or the Internet; but never exercise or move around. In fact, stay inside most of the time and never allow yourself to see sunshine or feel the wind on your face. Nature is to be considered evil because being outside often reminds people of the beauty of creation. Use amusing entertainment to replace all forms of physical fitness.
3) Eat anything you want, especially large portions of comfort foods followed by soda with lots of sugar and caffeine. Remember the rule - the worse the food is for you, the worse you will feel. Avoid anything healthy or nutritious if you want to always feel freaked out.
Emotional and Financial Methods to Ruin your Day
1) Keep all your fears inside and never take time to release pressure in healthy ways. No journaling, no mapping out insecurities on paper to prevent feeling panic. And make sure to never set goals that would give you a positive point of view in facing the future. Stuff your stress to make the day worse.
2) Don’t ever budget or create a realistic financial plan – in fact, just let your financial obligations pile up until you feel like you are drowning in debt and financial fears. Not having any idea where you stand financially is sure to make you feel worse.
3) Never tell anyone what keeps you up at night, in fact, avoid any coach, counselor, pastor, family member co-worker or friend who might be a safe person who could help you process your fears to find greater strength. Go it alone to improve your chances of feeling miserable.
How do successful people ‘snap out of it’ to find new energy?
Have you ever felt beat up by life? Can you relate to feeling overwhelmed, undervalued, empty, lonely, unloved, stressed, depressed or afraid? Then you have likely followed the ‘freaked out formula’; but don’t feel bad because I’ve been freaked out before too.
Some of my worst days were spent with a dark cloud of moodiness overhead that I made worse by following the formula. I suspect the same is true for you because everyone feels overwhelmed at times and everyone has been too stressed to face the day.
Successful people have learned to identify the ‘freak out’ formula so they can make rapid adjustments to feel better fast. The real problem is when you feel so exhausted and beat up by life that tomorrow looks worse than yesterday. So what about you -do you wake up refreshed to face a new day with positive energy or do you live ‘freaked out’ day after day?
The Secret to Positive Energy is E-MOTION
The bottom line secret to feeling stronger to break out of the ‘freaked out’ formula is to remember that emotion really could be defined as E-MOTION. This is because when you drift through life with no positive movement, you always feel worse. When you learn to get up and get moving you always feel better and stronger.
Try this simple exercise sometime. Start marching in place and repeat three times, ‘I feel Good’. I know it sounds silly, but if you look in a mirror while marching and swinging your arms in rhythm you can’t help but smile. Just creating movement and motion will improve your mood and fire up your motivation. In other words, you have a lot more control of your mood and motivation than you ever thought possible.
Moving from being ‘Freaked Out’ to Feeling Good Again
Successful people take positive action to break the ‘freak out’ formula. Everyone faces challenges and tough days but some face them with strength by doing the opposite of the formula listed above. I’ve tried it both ways, and in fact ruined some days because of being so moody. Thankfully there were people around me who could say, ‘snap out of it’, ‘get on track’, ‘you were meant for more than this.’
Do you have someone who comes alongside to challenge you with positive steps to break the ‘freak out’ formula? On your worst days do you go it alone, or allow safe people to come close and help? If you don’t have those people know that my purpose in life is to add value to others, so until you believe in you, I’ll believe in you. God placed you on this planet for greater things than you could ever imagine!
Please let today be the day you break the ‘freak out’ formula to really embrace feeling good. No matter what you are facing today, you will face it better by doing the opposite of the formula listed above so you can develop spiritual, emotional, financial and physical strength. You really do have the power to change and make today better. Choose to break the formula and when you do, tell others what you learned so they can break out of the ‘freak out’ formula too.
About the author- Dwight Bain is dedicated to helping people achieve greater results. He is a Nationally Certified Counselor, Certified Life Coach and Certified Family Law Mediator in practice since 1984 with a primary focus on solving crisis events and managing major change.