This post was first published in my monthly newsletter, the Kinsei-Do Fitness Nuggets, in May 2023. If you like this and find it useful, please sign up for the Fitness Nuggets here.
"Gee, you're such an idiot, how could you let XYZ happen?"
"Ungh, look at that guy, he must be so lazy / stupid / shortsighted / ...!"
Ever found yourself saying things like this about yourself or other people, be it out loud or just in your head? Beating yourself up about a mistake you made, or (silently) judging yourself or another person for the way they look, dress, speak, move, etc...
For the past couple of weeks, as I already mentioned in last month's Fitness Nuggets, I've been studying the work of Shirzad Chamin and Positive Intelligence (PQ), and while a high IQ and EQ are certainly valuable and very important to be successful in life, it appears that the secret ingredient for being happy in life is your PQ. And surely, as a reader of this newsletter, you're someone who is looking for both, right?
According to the theory of Positive Intelligence - and using their terminology - all of us have a wise and kind "person", a Sage, inside us, but we also have one or more less savoury characters, the so called Saboteurs, in our heads. The Saboteurs, characters such as the Judge, the Avoider, the Restless, the Hyper Achiever, etc, have developed in us when we were children, and they helped us to understand the world and how it works. You can go to the Positive Intelligence website if you're interested to find out the why and how.
Now, I know that all of this may sound a bit wishy washy, and not very scientific or rational at all, but here's where all of it falls into place: you can train your mind (to make the Sage stronger and the Saboteurs weaker)!
That's right, just like you do sets and reps in the gym to train your physical strength, you can also train and improve your mental fitness through - no surprise - PQ reps.
Your Saboteurs - there are ten in total, but the degree and strength of their appearance is very individualized - typically show up in situations that are associated with negative emotions: stress, anger, disappointment, etc.
Let's say you're in a work meeting and someone says something that doesn't make much sense, or goes against what you want and believe. Your typical reaction will probably be to judge this person for what they said, either out loud or just to yourself. "That guy is so stupid!" or "Why on earth would she say that?"
Often, this happens almost automatically and within milliseconds, and - the research has shown this - will set you on a spiralling path of more negative thoughts and emotions.
So what can you do instead? PQ Reps!
Let this sink in, and I hope you'll give it a shot. Depending on how strong your Saboteurs are, and for how many years you have (unwillingly) trained them, it will take more than a couple of days or even weeks to take hold, but trust me, once it does, its impact is truly astonishing!