It Doesn't Have to Be "All or Nothing"

By - karengray
01.27.21 10:29 AM

The term “all or nothing” refers to doing something either completely or not at all. It means having no middle position or compromise available. Even when we aren’t consciously aware of it, we can tend to think of even the everyday things we do as being “all or nothing”.

How many times have you put off a project and never came back to it? Or maybe you’ve started a project and it didn’t turn out the way you planned, so you abandoned it. Have you tried to accomplish something and found yourself saying “it didn’t work, it isn’t going to work”? That’s the “all or nothing” mindset. And it’s keeping you from your desired outcome.

The reality is, nothing is really all or nothing.

Whenever we set out to change something, there is a series of choices and actions that we must take in order to implement those changes. Each decision needs to be made before we can act on it, and each step needs be taken before we can move on to the next one. All changes are made up of these collections of decisions and actions. You have the ability to change course, make adjustments, and even stop the process at any time.

Everyone has at least one thing that they need to do, would like to overcome, or want to do. Sometimes we might be fearful or hesitant to change. And sometimes we might just be stuck in that “all or nothing” mindset. 

What would it feel like to take that first step? What would it look like to go ahead and do it? I’d like you to really imagine for a moment what it would feel like to take just one small step toward that goal.

Start at the Beginning

Take a couple minutes and think about your goal. If you’re having trouble finding your motivation, it might help to ask yourself, Is it really your goal? Is this something you want, or is this someone else’s expectations, like parents, teachers, bosses, or society in general. Maybe it’s a combination of the two. If that’s the case, reframe the goal to better reflect something you’d like to achieve.

And just like that, you have taken your first step. Now whenever you’re ready, you can take the next one.

Write it Down

Writing down goals gives them a sense of reality and increases our chances of sticking with them. When we write things down we can better organize our thoughts and keep track of our progress and growth. 

Write down what your goal is, how you’ll know you’ve reached it, and when you'd like to have achieved it by. Describe what it will look like when you’ve reached your goal. How will you feel when you have achieved it? How does this goal connect to what you value in your life? Being clear about how you’ll benefit from making these changes makes them easier to create.

Next, describe your goal in specific terms and timescales. Instead of saying  'I want to do some gardening.' be more specific. 'I want to plant lettuces, carrots and peas in the empty patch in my garden by the end of May.'

Write your goals in terms of what you want, not what you don't want. For example: saying 'I want to be able to wear my favourite size ___ jeans again', rather than 'I don't want to be overweight anymore' keeps you moving forward rather than keeping your focus on the problems.

Break it Down

When you’re ready, sit down for another 15 minutes. Think about the steps you’ll need to take on the way to achieving your desired outcome. Sometimes big goals are a bit vague. You might want to be healthier, but what does that mean? Breaking these big ideas down helps us to have a clearer picture of what needs to be done.. So start mapping out your goals so you can see the steps you’ll need to take. 

Write down the steps you’ll take and set some target dates to complete these by. Having several smaller goals makes each of them a bit easier and gives us a feeling of success along the way, which also makes it more likely that we'll stay on track towards our bigger goal.

No More “All or Nothing”

These simple steps will help you to break out of the limitations of the “all or nothing” mindset by allowing you to take a few small and manageable steps at a time and build up your forward momentum. There is plenty of room for compromise, and opportunities to change your mind. We’ve done away with that “All or Nothing” block, and planted that first step on the path ahead to that life you are so ready to enjoy.

The Role of Hypnosis

Hypnosis, to me, is a specific set of tools designed to help people use their own sills, abilities, and resources more effectively to take back control of the parts of their lives that they felt were out of control before.

Sometimes we have limiting beliefs that get in our way. Sometimes we have negative thinking that can sabotage our success and put some serious roadblocks in our way. The subconscious mind is actually trying to satisfy some need by maintaining these limiting thoughts and beliefs. And the best way to eliminate that negative thinking is to teach the subconscious mind to find a different way to meet the need.

Hypnosis lets you experience the changes you want to see as if you’ve already achieved them. Using your imagination, you can see the benefits of reaching your goals, and that allows your subconscious mind to let go of the old patterns and habits and behaviors that held you back.In a few sessions, you can let go of the limiting behaviors and beliefs. When you clear away that clutter, you have room to work, create, and build new patterns.

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Karen Gray is a Certified Hypnotist, Registered Nurse, and Director of Green Mountain Hypnosis. For more information on how you can use hypnosis to change your life, schedule your free Strategy Call at