Lately, I've been thinking a lot about how easy it is for a person to talk themselves into a state of learned helplessness. Allowing your mind to toy with your strength and not fighting intruding negativity are so easily things people do without even noticing, especially when they are vulnerable to feeling overwhelmed or affected by the twists and turns of life.

What I've learned is that these lies we tell ourselves every day that cue questions and doubts of self-worth can be stopped by the power of your mind. Changing your perception (consciously at first but with some time habitually) can change your attitude and state of being for the better.

We are given the opportunity to make what we want out of this life, and how we choose to respond to our emotions and perceptions defines our behavior and approach. Your emotions don't control you, and your emotions aren't you. They can stop being who you are and holding you back if you play a conscious and active role in your life.

My Reasoning Behind This "Intervention"

What inspired me was a TED Talk by psychologist Kelly McGonial about how to make stress your friend. Everyone is familiar with the pressures of life, and with scary deadlines, intense life events, and big changes, stress invites feelings of fear, self-doubt, and discomfort into our lives.

Stress also triggers physiological responses —  it makes your heart pound, breath quicken, and body sweat. The levels of stress present in today's society amongst young people likens to the levels of stress experienced by 1950s psychiatric patients. But what if I can tell you that stress may only be bad for you if you believe that to be the case?

How You Think About Stress Matters

If you don't have time to watch the full video, let me give you the gist: When you change your mind about stress, you can change your body's response to stress. People view their response to stress as anxiety and incapability, signs that you aren't coping well or as you're supposed to.

But what if you change that interpretation and start understanding that your body is just in preparation — preparing you to meet the upcoming challenge. Studies have proven that people who view their stress response as helpful for their performance were actually less anxious and more confident when in the face of the challenge that was causing them stress.

Their physical response also changed, their body stayed more relaxed and their blood vessels didn't constrict as they normally would have. The body responded in a courageous way. Isn't that just incredible? Your mind is so powerful that just tweaking the process of analyzing your physical response to stress completely changes your reaction to a stressful situation and then your performance. 

Let the things that scare you move you forward because after all, fear is the main factor in what's holding you back. The power of your mind can and will help you reach your potential if you work towards letting it. Of course it's a process, but it's a process worth fighting through. When silencing the interrogation in your head and recognizing stress as the opposite of a hinderance become habitual, you will feel the freedom to be your best self and live your best life.