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Read this if life has you on the struggle bus

joy less stress motivation Feb 20, 2021

I was on the phone with my sister this week and I was telling her I was experiencing a new sleep challenge. She started laughing and said, “'Challenge.' What a YOU thing to say.”

You see, I decided 7 years ago I needed to stop thinking about all my “problems”… because they were all could think about. This wasn’t working out because of that reason. That person was getting in my way. This person didn’t understand.

Blah blah blah

It was boring and it made me depressing to be around.

So in my self-helping and reading and trying to figure out how to be a positive person, I came across a practice called “reframing.”

You’ve probably heard of it.

Reframing is just looking at something from a different perspective. For me, that perspective usually comes from Future Mel.

So instead of seeing a problem that was weighing me down, I could think:

Future Me is going to be so grateful I figured this out.

Instead of looking at a struggle and thinking how much it sucked, I could try to think:

Future Me is going to be so much stronger because of this.

Or if I needed to take it outside of myself, I could think:

Future Me is going to be able to teach people what she learns from this experience.

Reframing is looking at things from a different perspective and getting sneaky with your words. (Listen up, writers, you love playing with words so this is for you!)

So when I had zero practice at reframing, I said to myself… well I can at least start calling my problems “challenges” and see if I can trick myself into thinking about them differently.

Turns out… it worked!

You can use your words to trick your brain into looking at things with a new perspective.

And it goes both ways. If you constantly reframe things to the negative, your brain will look for evidence to support your viewpoint.

YOU: I’ve got 99 problems.

YOUR BRAIN: I count 100 and I see 10 more on the horizon.

If you tell yourself over and over, “This book is so hard to write.” or “I’m not good enough to start a podcast.” or “I’ll never be as famous as that person over there….” Your brain will get onboard and help you find evidence to support your conclusion.

You find what you look for.

So if you find yourself in need of a boost or some extra motivation… if you’re feeling down in the dumps…. Try this word trickery known as reframing.


Pick one word or phrase you say over and over that you know isn’t helping your mood or energy or creativity… and replace it with something that is also true, but more positive. If you’re not sure, just do what Past Mel did and work on turning all your “problems” into “challenges.”

You’ve got this!



P.S. If you like this kind of brain kung fu and are interested in living your version of your best life, enroll in my course, Unlock Your 5-Star Future. It’s full of this kind of stuff plus the Mel Jolly thought-provoking questions you know and love. And it’s Buy One, Gift One Free… so you can go in halvsies with someone.

P.P.S. My sleep challenge is that I’ve started snoring and I’m waking myself up, so if you have suggestions for me, I’m all ears. 😴

Ready to make progress on your goals? 

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