Before the proverbial poop hits the fan, we often get signs and signals that things are heading that way.
Whether a poker player disguising his hand, a politician lying to his people, or a depressed soul trying to convince everyone they're doing great - when our outer facade and behaviours are not in line with our inner feelings, we all have our 'tells'.
These tells, which are often very subtle behaviours, reveal more about our underlying state than our bigger actions and words ever do.
We can try to conceal them, ignore them, or pretend it's how we like things, but sooner or later these tells will make way for a big reveal, which my friends, is never pretty or fun.
So, I'm here today to encourage you to pay attention; watch, listen and learn from your tells. They are your signal that something is up. They are your opportunity to step in and address the underlying issue BEFORE the impending self-sabotage / meltdown / binge fest / row occurs.
So what are your tells?
Learn to recognise your tells and you are one step closer to being free of those nasty dips or tumbles 'off the wagon' that seem to happen again and again.
Think back to the last few 'blips' you've had. Have there been any similarities in the build up? Are there any patterns of behaviour/thought/emotion that always seem to precede the climax? Is there anything that you catch yourself doing before really 'losing it'?
We're looking for the subtle behaviours that show up early when you're not in alignment with your values / goals / purpose / happiness / vision.
Here are some of mine;
- Biting my nails (even though I love it when my hands look pretty)
- Spending more time mind-numbingly scrolling on social media
- Developing a close relationship with the jar of peanut butter
- Drinking more alcohol
- Making unhealthy food choices more frequently
- Getting frustrated with Rua / Graham / others over trivial nonsense
When I notice myself doing any of the above more frequently, I try not to judge myself harshly, but instead recognise that these often are signalling something greater, ask what that is and what do I need in order to change my course for the positive? Ignorance is not the way forward, compassionate recognition and action is.
So, acknowledge when your tells show up, be grateful for the warning bell and then give yourself permission to explore what is going on underneath it all. This is SUCH a pivotal step in breaking the cycle of self-sabotage and creating your own unhappiness.
It's worth noting that your tells may also come in other physical ways; broken sleep, bad skin, acid reflux, changes to bowel habits etc. Our bodies signal us being out of alignment in the same way our behaviours do. Fascinating eh?!
Whether you know it or not, you are already a master of communication, so start listening!