Ep 105: How to Stop Fondling Your Brain's "Stories"


  • Examples of beliefs you adopted from the patriarchy, capitalism, religion, and our schools and how they keep us playing small and feeling empty and burnt out.
  • How we try to use positive thought swapping, and why it never works.
  • What we really fear, and why we keep fondling beliefs that cost us feeling love, happiness, peace, and just good old fashioned loving our lives.
  • A simple question to use daily that's an easy solution to stop fondling your brain's stories.

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The patriarchy, capitalism, religion, and our schools feed us beliefs from the day we’re born that we grow up to believe to be universal truths. Beliefs like you must work hard to be successful, don’t waste time, be modest - don’t brag or be too confident. Yet 95% of our beliefs don’t serve us in creating that career and life we see  “other” humans can have, but don’t believe that could ever be us.

These beliefs are why we feel empty- -  like our soul has been snatched out of our bodies. We think if we change something outside of us like get that promotion, make more money, work for a new boss, or change companies we’ll finally feel fulfilled and at peace.

These universal beliefs which I refer to as “stories” are why you feel overwhelmed, burnout, and empty. And so with thought work, we can go into our brain to understand what’s going on.

This week I’m offering you a brand new way to stop fondling and believing your brain’s “stories”, and decide to love yourself enough to start creating that career and life that feels in balance, peaceful, and powerful. Let’s do this!

Learn more about my corporate coaching course The Rockstar Program. 

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Download Full Episode Transcript

Welcome to rock your brain. Rock your life. The only podcast hosted by a high achieving tech entrepreneur and certified coach that teaches you how to use proven cognitive tools to rewire your brain and break through the second pandemic. Burnout. If you lead a company or badass team and need a proven evidence based cognitive course to retain and develop them.

This podcast is for you. Sarah helps humans break through burnout, have insane work life balance, and feel magical at work and in their lives. Again, here's your host certified coach and tech industry entrepreneur, Sarah Moody.

Hey, Rockstars. Okay. I've been, uh, I've been on a role watching a lot of live music, which has just made me so happy. And I'm excited to talk to you today about "how to stop fondling your brain's stories," quote, unquote, those unintentional thoughts in your brain that are creating all kinds of havoc in your life.

I'm gonna give you a super easy tool on how to stop fondling them and believing them. Like petting them. Like, they're your pet, like your dog or your cat stroking them. We're gonna learn how to stop all that this, this week. Okay. So what we're gonna cover today is, you know, between the patriarchy, and capitalism, and religion, and our schools, we've been fed these beliefs from the day we're born that

we grow up to believe to be universal truths. So there's a bunch of beliefs that we think now are truths. Beliefs like you must work hard to be successful. Don't waste time. Be modest. Don't brag, or be too confident. Yet 95% of our beliefs do not serve us in creating that career and life we see other humans can have, but we don't believe that we could ever have.

And those beliefs are why we feel empty. Like our soul has been snatched out of our bodies and we think that if we change something outside of us, like get that promotion, or make more money, or work for a new boss, or change companies or get a new romantic partner, we'll finally feel fulfilled and at peace. And these universal beliefs, which I refer to as stories in your brain are why you feel overwhelmed, burnt out and empty.

And so with thought work, we can always go into our brain, get curious and understand what's going on. And so this week I'm offering you a brand new way to stop fondling and believing your brain stories like enough, stop. And decide to love yourself enough so that you can start creating that career and life

that feels in balance, peaceful, powerful show up for yourself. Show up for your team. Show up for your company.

So a couple of episodes that are foundational to this podcast that you can go back and listen to first are episode 92 "how to trust yourself" and episode 93, "how to trust your desires." These two episodes are all about how to put yourself first. How to trust that your desires are medicine for your soul.

They are actually healing. These episodes help you practice the skill of trusting yourself. So when you commit to yourself that you'll work out three times a week, for example, you do just that you obey yourself, right. That you start building the muscle to trust yourself. And so, that's foundational here.

Now, I thankfully been trusting myself and trusting my desires for about three years now, since I decided to be a coach.

And so when I talk about our brain's stories, quote, unquote, and the fondling that we do of them, I'm gonna share what those stories are. And what I wanna offer to you is I just want you to just be curious about them. Be confused. I love this idea of just being confused about what our brain believes. Okay.

And I'm gonna show you how all your brain's beliefs come from; the patriarchy, capitalism, all those external things outside of us institutions outside of us. And so I want you just to question, like, why do they exist? Why am I thinking this way? And then I want you to think, is this belief serving me and supporting me in what I desire for my life.

Okay. So a great example of a belief that I broke up with a couple years ago is our society has this belief that if you're sitting alone at the bar at a restaurant, or if you're at a concert alone, then there's something wrong. Like, it's so sad that you're alone. It's like, does it mean you don't have any friends?

You know, does it mean that no one loves you? Like, it's like a bad thing. And so what I've been doing and what I do like so easily now is I go on dates on my own. Like every week I will go to a different bar and I'll sit there and I'll have dinner or have lunch or have a snack. I'll go to music festivals on my own and go listen to an artist that I really, really want to, like a few weeks ago, I went to Outside Lands in San Francisco and I went to listen to post Malone on my own on a Sunday night.

To me it's like a spiritual practice. Of being with myself and feeling so great, being alone with me and myself and I. And it doesn't mean that I'm unlovable or there's something wrong with me or that I'm alone. I'm just honoring my desires. So I've broken up with the stories. In my brain that I fondled for decades, y'all that I can't go to a bar alone.

I can't go and sit in a restaurant on my own. I can't go to a music concert on my own a music festival on my own, because then I'm unlovable. Right? I made it mean something about me and it means nothing about you. You get to decide what's sitting at a bar alone and having dinner means. For me, it's like one of the most delicious, amazing, yummy experiences.

I get to talk to strangers or I get to read and I just get to order amazing, beautiful food and enjoy myself. So these are the beliefs that we're going to question and stop fondling. One of my, I have so many incredible colleagues and one of my colleagues, I love her to death and she threw her own 40th birthday party a few weeks ago.

And I love the story that she shared with me about throwing her own 40th birthday party. And it was really similar to what I just shared with you about me going and doing shit on my own. And it's all good. So where she started was really questioning what she wanted. And a lot of shoulds came up and a lot of shouldn'ts came up. So when she thought about her 40th birthday party, it was like, and she thought about like, what do I want? And what would the most like amazing 40th party for myself be like? And like, how can I give it to myself?

I mean, so many thoughts came up like, well, my husband should be organizing this. Or my best friend, you know, maybe my best friend should be organizing this or maybe the, the invite should come from my husband. And, you know, because our society is like, oh, you can't, you know, throw your own birthday party. I remember when I turned 40, like, I didn't think I could throw my own birthday party.

I had my best friend throw it. Right. Because. Our society just has this story that it's so sad if you throw your own birthday party. And so it was so beautiful listening to my colleague, talk about really questioning all the beliefs and all the stories, and she knows what she wanted for her birthday. And so she had to like drop the charade and pretense of like, oh, my husband should send the invites.

You know, everyone would know that, you know, the plan was coming from her. And she was telling me this funny story about how she went to the rental company to order rental furniture for the party. And there was an older lady at the rental company and the lady asked her who the party was for. And she said, well, it it's for me.

And the lady looked at her, kind of with this sad look like you don't have a best friend or family or anyone in your life who can plan this for you. So isn't it fascinating? Like she was judging, like we have this, we, we judge these thoughts good or bad. Like I used to think it was a bad thing to go and sit in a bar on my own.

You know, this lady, this older lady thought it was a bad thing that my colleague and friend didn't have someone to plan her birthday party. Whereas my colleague, an amazing friend just wanted to plan her own effing, amazing birthday party. She's like, you know, I know what I want and I can throw it for myself.

And that clarity of questioning the stories. Deciding nothing's good or bad. And getting to that place of like, I know what I want and I can make it happen and I can be clear and powerful and make it all happen is such a yummy, beautiful experience for ourselves. And when we start this journey and we're like, yeah, I wanna go sit at the bar on my own, or I wanna go throw my own damn birthday party.

Our brain will start judging and our brain will want us to tone it down. Right. Because there are all these preconceived ideas of what's allowed and what's not, and what's gonna look good to other people. And what are they gonna think? And are they gonna think this is all okay. And so this is a really hard thing to do because it brings up like, what do you think about yourself and are you okay?

Like, you know, being at that bar alone and being okay with not really caring, what other people think or throwing your own birthday party and being at the center of attention, right. We've been conditioned, especially as women to not take up too space, be quiet to be humble. To not to really be seen, to be as little as possible.

I was taught pretty much. This is a belief I had every day. Growing up, you are to be seen Sarah, but not heard. You're to just be quiet. Be little this is a very British way of thinking.

And. It is truly the opposite of really feeling in alignment with yourself and with your life when you're playing small, being little, being quiet, worrying, what other people think.

And when you look at all the beliefs that we adopt from the minute we're born, you know, we learned from our parents and they learned it from, you know, the culture we live in. It's, it's kind of a few big buckets. It's actually like four big buckets. These beliefs, these stories that we fondle and believe every single day come from the patriarchy number one.

This kind of male dominated culture that we live in male controlled male identification, male centeredness, right. Is the dominant gender. They're the providers, they're the bread winners. They have the money, they should throw the damn party. Right. Then you think about capitalism, which is all. Work hard. Work hard,

then you will deserve X. Work hard then you will deserve the party. Right? It's a lie. I mean, I work in the tech industry, look at all the tech startups out there. Like if you're in the right place at the right time, you're gonna be like a gazillionaire. So it it's a lie that you should work hard and then you will deserve something and then you will make all the money and then you'll have all the fame and glory it's a lie.

I even think about like, you know, families who hand down wealth,

but if we get caught up in the belief that you have to work hard and then you will deserve X, you don't wanna take a nap, right? You don't wanna rest. You're running, being productive all day long. There's no time for joy and celebrations, birthday parties sitting alone at the bar, enjoying a divine lunch.

That's not okay. That's like pleasure. And the pursuit of pleasure and honoring your desires is frowned upon because guess what? Y'all's not good for capitalism. If everyone's out there just having long lunches. Taking naps. No one's working. Right. So this is what is just so mind blowing. When you get curious about your beliefs, you see that they serve the society, they don't serve, you know?

Yes. We need to have certain, you know, rules to run a society. Better faster, all the things. But does that, is this serving you? Is that what you want your truth to be? Is that a value to you or is it just for the benefit of the society? And yet, you know, so many of us have just internalized these thoughts and these stories and have just taken them to be truths.

All right. Number three, let's talk about religion. And these are all religions. I went to Catholic school for the first, um, like 10 years of my life and I never considered myself Catholic, but I know a lot about different religions and definitely one of the things that, you know, all religions espouse, especially.

Uh, Christianity and, and Catholicism is, you know, be modest. It's really important to be modest, be humble, you know, pursuing your dreams is selfish. Oh. And let's talk about all the judgment, the right, and the wrong. And you see how we've learned from religions. What's right. And what's wrong. And now. We're judging all the beliefs, all the stories.

This is the right thing to believe. This is the wrong thing to believe. It's the right thing to believe that you should be modest. It's the wrong thing to believe that you should talk about your wins at work.

So that kinda right and wrong lens is actually a broader belief for you to completely break up. Because when we look at everything as what's right and what's wrong, we lose the plot. We don't look at beliefs and these stories from the lens of like, it's not what what's right. And what's wrong. The question is the more powerful question is what's serving me and what's not serving me.

And if it's not serving you a belief, it doesn't belong to. That's what I want you to sit with. If one of these stories or beliefs isn't serving you in creating the life that you love and the peace and the joy and the dropping, the fried and the overwhelmed and the burnout at work. If that belief isn't serving you in creating that reality, it doesn't belong to.

And here's the fourth big category school. Think about, you know, all the years of school that you've attended all the different schools you've been to. Schools are conditioned to make us believe that the teachers are experts. The professors are experts. The doctor of whatever is the experts.

The teachers have the answer. I don't have the answer. They have the answer. Think about that conditioning that you got from school to look at these experts as having all the answers, all knowledge. Right. They're the sovereign beings. They have the answers. That's totally FD up. You're the sovereign being.

You have the answers, you have all the answers for every part of your life, right inside of you right now today, the stories, the brain stories are completely like. Little curtains that are covering your eyes. They're completely making that knowledge and all the answers that you have inside of you, like very cloudy, but you've got all the answers right now.

You're the expert. You're the sovereign being who knows all, especially the thoughts that will serve you. You already know those. And so I love thinking about, so when I was, you know, Looking at all the religious beliefs too. And you know, definitely one of the ones that I was taught, going to a Catholic school for so many years is modesty. And modesty was like, for example, we couldn't wear jewelry.

We couldn't wear makeup. We wore this really strict, almost like, you know, neck to middle ankle uniform. It was all about being modest. Which is all about being like an assuming and small, right. And modest also means like, you know, being like moderate in the estimation of your own abilities or achievements.

And if you're modest in the estimation of your own abilities or achievements, how are you gonna feel obvious some self doubt, right? Why would you wanna be like unassuming or moderate in the estimation of your own kind of skills, abilities, achievements? Why is that a good thing to not be able to truly assess your own abilities, to not see yourself fully for how amazing you are?

Why is being modest, better? Not right.

You know, another thing I was taught too, that is pretty pervasive across religions is just being humble , to be on the, down low about who we are.

And it's also about like, humble is, is, is also about like freedom from feeling proud. Now, why would you not wanna feel proud of like how you showed up for yourself today? How you nailed that deliverable at work, how you left work at five and when an exercise, how you obey yourself and went. You know, to the gym or ran outside three times this week.

Why would you not wanna be proud of all that? So when we're not allowed to feel confident, pride, and peace in our lives, we feel wildly out of balance.

And so these stories are these beliefs that we've learned in our culture from all these institutions are just snatching our soul and squashing, the wisdom that already exists inside of us. My niece, she's now 15, but a couple years ago when she was 13, she'd moved to Cincinnati, but she came back here to San Francisco for her birth.

And I organized a birthday party for her and she knew exactly what she wanted. Aunt Sarah, I want Kara's cupcakes. We're gonna do tos outside on the deck. I want Z pizza and I want lemonade

she knew exactly what she wanted. And I want these five friends, nothing was squashed out of her. She wasn't. Being modest or humble about celebrating the fact that she was turning 13. She's like, yeah, all the candles, all the things, all the food, all the cupcakes let's go.

And so what I wanna offer to you is these stories keep us small and we believe them and we fond And when we believe them, it becomes a lot easier just to, if I'm gonna be modest and humble and small, have my friends and family like throw the party right. And hope they throw the party in the right way.


 if they don't. Maybe feel some resentment or some anger or some disappointment, or even telling them, I remember for another big birthday, I said, you know, I don't even want a party. I don't even want that. all the eyes on me.

So what I'm here to tell you is that. Everything you've been taught. All these beliefs lies they're stories, and you need to unlearn them. You do not need to deserve rest or joy or pleasure or love or celebrations or acknowledging yourself. There's no amount of like, I gotta hustle and do a shitload of hard work and then I can rest.

And honor my desires and celebrate myself when you learn how to do thought work and change your thoughts about yourself and just get curious about all these beliefs and really honor what you deserve and what, and allow yourself to think and dream that's when. Life becomes effing magical and feels amazing.

And so it's not your fault that you believe all these stories and fond them all day long because you've been taught that you shouldn't think certain things, right. You shouldn't think. Like you've been taught from the patriarchy, our culture, capitalism, all the institutions you've been taught to think this way, but it is now your responsibility to unlearn them.

And that's where I started three years ago. Unlearning all these stories it's deciding to not fond and believe this, the BS.

So you can start, you know, checking into your body and identifying those desires, those unmet needs. What do you want, what do you wanna give yourself? How do I just stop the lie of acting? Like I don't want anything. I don't wanna have a birthday party. I don't wanna go to that concert music festival on my own and dance.

So a simple question.

And so a simple sentence and a question to use daily. That's a very easy solution to stop following your brain's stories is the sentence is if it doesn't serve me, it doesn't belong to me. If it doesn't serve me, it doesn't belong to me. So if that story, that sentence doesn't serve you, it doesn't belong to you.

So I want you to ask this question, does this serve me? So let's go to one example of would the thought you can't go to that music festival on your own Sarah, because people are gonna think it's weird that you're alone. Does that serve me? Because I love dancing, not, and not, everyone's always available at seven o'clock on a Sunday night for 90 minutes.

Right. So I would be depriving myself of a desire of something that feels fun and full of joy and delicious and amazing. It's like dancing to a musician that I love. And at first I'm gonna tell you right now, as you start to look at this sentence, And question it, like, look at the stories and question them at first, it's gonna be really hard and you're gonna be awful at it.

So for example, maybe you're tired and it's a Monday afternoon and you wanna take a nap and your brain is gonna say, you can't take a nap. It's a Monday afternoon. You gotta work. Or maybe you wanna have a massage this week and your brain is gonna say no way. That's too indulgent. Or you're gonna wanna celebrate a big win at work.

And your brain's gonna say that wasn't enough. Who cares? Who are you to be? So like braggadocious about who you are and what I wanna offer to you is as you notice your brain and it being really hard as you start to do this work, I want you to come back to this place of like those desires you have. Are medicine for your soul.

That desire to take a nap is medicine for your soul, right? You're tired. If you don't take a nap, you're gonna be cranky at work. You're gonna eat some extra snacks, get bloated, feel like crap. So that story, if I can't take a nap for 20 minutes is just a story, right? Is it serving you? All right, then it doesn't belong to you.

Go take a 15 minute nap that desire to have a consistent bedtime, cuz science will tell us if we have a consistent bedtime, we're gonna feel better when we wake up in the morning. Right. It's not, not as is told us. If you go to bed at the same time, we wake up at the same time every day. Like you just, your body gets more regulated.

So that thought of like, I wanna watch TV. I know I should go to bed at 10 o'clock, but I wanna watch TV. Is that serving you? No. Cause if you stay up an hour past your bedtime, you're gonna feel sleepy in the morning. Right? When you feel sleepy in the morning, what happens? You show up at work, cranky, uninspired, unimaginative.

Feeling crappy. So remember if it doesn't serve me, if this story doesn't serve me this sentence, doesn't serve me. It doesn't belong to me. And then ask yourself, does this serve me in showing up at work, feeling calm and confidence, building a life that feels delicious and juicy and amazing. A life that you love.

Does the story serve you? If not Robert. All right. I love you have a beautiful rest of your day and I'll talk to you next week. Okay. Bye.

 If you're loving what you're learning in the podcast, you have to come and check out the rockstar program. It's my coaching program, where we take these neuroscience based cognitive tools and we use them daily to break through burnout so you can fall passionately in love with your life and your career again. So join me over at Sarah moody.com/rockstar program. I would love to have you join me. You can also follow me at Sarah L moody on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. I can't wait to see you.



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