Let's say a friend sends you an email about a really great job opening. Excited, you click the link and start reading the job description. Never mind that you have ninety percent of the skills they're looking for. Your mind goes straight to the one area where you fall short. Pretty soon, an old familiar voice starts whispering in your head.

"There's no way they're going to pick me."

In a heartbeat, you've talked yourself out of applying for the position. It happens so fast that you don't even consider a counter-argument. Another opportunity disappears, all thanks to a pile of worn-out trash that your mind has been recycling over and over for years.

What if you noticed the garbage thoughts as they ran across your brain? What if they moment they appeared, you laughed and said to yourself, "Here comes the trash."

You see, once you become aware that you always react the same way, there's no turning back. You can never be unaware of that reaction again.

That means that the next time you're running your self-worth through the shredder—and you catch yourself—you can make a life-changing choice. You can keep recycling the same old garbage, or you can toss the old trash out and try something different.

We call this ACT, which stands for Aware, Choose, Toss. It's the cornerstone of what we teach. Once you see the garbage, you just know what to do next: dump it for something of much higher value. So the next time you call yourself an idiot or tell yourself that you're not skinny enough or talented enough or deserving enough, try this three-step process and see what happens.

1. Aware. If there's a familiar knot in your stomach, quickly look at what's going on in your mind. Is that voice feeding you a familiar line of garbage?

2. Choose. Now that you see the garbage, are you going to listen to it?

3. Toss. If the answer is no, it's time to get rid of it. In this case, it's as simple as saying, "I'm not listening to this anymore."

Remember: recycling negative thoughts is a complete waste of time. Do yourself a favor and take out the trash.

Blog Articles 

An Introduction to Forgiveness

Is the Value Really There?

How to Break Out of Your Comfort Zone

The #1 Tool for Tossing Trash

Chocolate Chip Cookies: The Perfect Garbage Metaphor

What to Do When Life Throws Garbage at You

Why Recycling is a Waste of Time

Routes, Goals, and Garbage

Cerebral Spring Cleaning

How Breaking My Arms Got Me Into College

How to Trash Your Career

The Unconscious Connection

How a Broken Heart Can Increase Your Property Value

A Tribute to Sam Berns

Why Thoughts Smell

Why the Holidays Have No Value

Why Dumping Trash Matters