Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas is a confidence expert, a ‘Queen of Metaphors and Analogies,’ and the Founder and CEO of Think Yourself Academy, an organization offering leading edge courses, trainings and events. Nathalie combines ten years in human resources, twenty five years in Sales and thirty years in the fitness industry and has inspired over 100,000 people in audiences around the world. She’s a number one International best-selling author of fifteen books on success, wellness, communication and empowerment.
Today, Nathalie joins the show to talk about her latest book, Think Yourself Confident: Fifteen Keys to Increase Confidence, Ignite Performance & Unlock Your Full Potential.
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00:48 – Jonathan introduces today’s guest, Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas, who joins the show to talk about how she shifted her mindset about money and the power of the unconscious mind
12:04 – The origin of Nathalie’s Think Yourself program
16:03 – Reprogramming negative self-talk
20:38 – The Emotional Delivery Truck
28:42 – Tips for getting out of an emotional loop or limiting belief
38:15 – One piece of advice for those looking to change their mindset and one thing to completelyn avoid
46:20 – Trusting your power
47:48 – Jonathan thanks Nathalie for joining the show and lets listeners know where to connect with her
“I realized that the biggest learning of all was not how to invest it. This knowledge exists. We know the knowledge. It starts with how you think about money in your head and all these limiting beliefs. I had to get rid of those limiting beliefs, especially that one: when you make more money, you spend more money so you always live paycheck to paycheck. So, I had to see abundance differently. I had to change my mindset about money.” (03:14) (Nathalie)
“The unconscious mind can handle 2.3 million pieces of information every second. Five to nine, for the logical mind, but 2.3 million for the unconscious mind. That is where the power is and that is what you want to tap into. And I call this your ‘personal assistant.’” (11:41) (Nathalie)
“In your prefrontal cortex all emotions are created equally. Your brain doesn’t know the difference between anxiety or excitement. So if you choose it’s anxiety, you will pollute yourself with 1,400 chemicals – cortisol that is gonna slow you down. Or you can choose that it’s excitement or curiosity. If you go into excitement or curiosity, your brain will send feel-good chemicals through your bloodstream and make you very resourceful to face whatever it is that you’re facing.” (27:38) (Nathalie)
“You’ve heard of affirmations. A lot of people do affirmations. The problem is affirmations don’t work if you don’t believe them. And, very often, there’s way too much of a disconnect between the reality and the affirmation.” (30:11) (Nathalie)
“And that’s what I do. I remove people’s triggers so that you don’t have to respond to an event, or a comment, or a behavior in that specific way.” (44:55) (Nathalie)
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Jonathan DeYoe: Hey, welcome back to the Mindful Money podcast. On this episode, we are chatting with Nathalie Plamondon Thomas. Nathalie is a confidence expert. She’s the founder and CEO of Think Yourself Academy, offering leading edge courses, trainings and events. She combines ten years in human resources, 25 years in sales, and 30 years in the fitness industry. In 2007, she was Canada’s fitness Instructor of the year. In 2021, she was the canadian presenter of the year. She’s a dynamic speaker, crowned queen of metaphors and analogies. Along the past 30 years, she’s inspired over 100,000 people and audiences around the world. She is a number one international bestselling author of 15 books on success, wellness, communication, and empowerment. I wanted to have her on the podcast today to talk about her latest book, think yourself confident. 15 keys to increase confidence, ignite performance, and unlock your full potential. Nathalie welcome to the Mindful Money podcast.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Jonathan, I’m super excited. Thank you so much for inviting me. It’s going to be a good show. Thank you so much.
Jonathan DeYoe: Let’s have some fun first. Where do you call home and where are you connecting from?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: I’m connecting from Vancouver, BC. Well, south of Vancouver. I’m in White Rock, just on the border of the state of Washington. I’m in Canada. I’m from the east coast, originally from the province of Quebec, the french area of Canada, and I now live on the coast.
Jonathan DeYoe: And you’ve been running companies for a long time. So let’s go back. Before you were doing that, what did you learn about money and entrepreneurship growing up?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Wow. Like probably everybody else, I have excellence in, uh, creating, limiting beliefs about money. Money doesn’t go on trees and you have to work hard for your money. And, uh, the best one was when you make more money, you spend more money. So you always live paycheck to paycheck. I actually was in business before owning a printing business. We have over 100 staff. And one day we do what we do with a business. You make money, and at one point, people want to acquire you. We sold the business. We made a lot of money. I was in my 20s, could have potentially not work for the rest of my life with this money. Two years later, where was it gone. Because I was really good at making money, but very good at spending it, too. Lots of learnings. Lots of learnings. And I realized that the biggest learning of all was not how to invest it or how to like this knowledge exists, and we all know. We know the knowledge. It starts with how you think about money in your head and all these limiting beliefs. I had to get rid of those limiting beliefs, especially that one. When you make more money, you spend more money. So you always live paycheck to paycheck. So I had to see abundance differently. I had to change my mindset about money, which I’m still really good at making money, and now I’m much better at keeping it.
Jonathan DeYoe: Where do you think that comes from? That if you make more money, you spend more money? Where did that originate for you?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: I do believe that the way that we talk to ourselves, the voice that repeats in your head, in French, we have an expression that says. Meaning that you were born for a small piece of bread. I’m a small town girl. Not in Quebec city, a very small town outside of it. And there’s this limiting belief that you cannot succeed when everybody else is so much better than you. From the big city, right? So I remember when I started my business, I was hearing this voice in my head telling me, what you want to become a speaker in English? You don’t even speak English. You want to write books in English, it’s never going to work. You’re not good enough. Are you kidding me? So I had just moved to Toronto, and I don’t know, if you’ve been there, where you’re new at something, you don’t really know anybody. And then I was teaching fitness in a gym, and I had hardly anybody in my classes. So how do you go from begging your boss, from pulling your classes off the schedule? Because there’s only two people in them. To becoming fitness instructor of the year for Canada. Less than a year later, I’ll tell you what happened. The gym was introducing a new dance program. Nobody knew this, but I have a dance background, so I put my hand up to be part of the demo team. So picture this. You’re on stage, you’re in front of 150 other instructors that are so much better than you. You’re very intimidated, but you’re giving it, and you know that you got this because you see all the faces with a shocked look looking at you, and you know that you got it. So I don’t know what this experience would do for you, but what it did for me, it had a huge impact. I started strutting around in the gym as if I owned it. My classes became packed because I showed so much confidence. And a few months later, somebody corners me in the change room and says, Nathalie I have to tell you, we really started respecting you after what happened to you on that day, because you acted as if it didn’t bother you at all. And I’m like, what’s she talking about? What happened to me on that day? Well, Jonathan, it turns out that I had a wardrobe malfunction on that day. Boom. My boob had been sticking out the whole time during the performance. That is why everybody was looking at me. What a shock to look on their face. But I was responding to a different story in my head. One of the most embarrassing moments of my life could have been really bad, but I was responding to a different story in my head, and I realized that this voice in my head was everything, and it needed to change. And if it was telling me that my English was not good enough, that I would never succeed, I needed to change it. The voice was right. My English was really bad. I remember teaching a yoga class. Everybody’s laying on the ground at the end during the relaxation. And you know what I’m talking about, because you’re going to meditation course, right after you’re facilitating, right? So you’re laying there, all the participants are down, and I wanted them to relax their face, relax their jaw, so I wanted them to put their tongue on the roof of their mouth. So I said, everybody put your song behind your tits. And then everybody started laughing. I didn’t even know what I had said wrong. Anyway, the voice was right. My English was really bad. But guess what? I thought, I need to change that voice inside my head, because I only respond to the stories in my head. So I spent the last 15 years studying neuroscience, created a system to reprogram our mind differently, whether it is for business, for finance, for relationships, for your career, for your money, for anything. And that’s the system I shared in my. It’s 17 now. Number best selling books and all the one on one coaching that I do, the stages that I speak on across the nation and around the world. So that’s what I do now, is teaching that system to reprogram your brain.
Jonathan DeYoe: So you’re on the stage. It’s a year, six months, a year before you find out why they were looking at you on the stage.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: A little bit less than that. A few months. Yeah, a few months after.
Jonathan DeYoe: And then how long does it take after that? After the realization that, oh, my God, that’s what happened for you to go, you know what? I need to understand the brain. I mean, there’s got to be a sort of incubation period between the realization and, wow, the brain is so powerful. And how did you get from that realization to saying, you know what? I got to study this and go deep? Like, was that a year period? A two year period? How did you get there?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: There’s other events that happens all simultaneously. When I, at the same time, realizing I was a personal trainer as well, teaching fitness classes and doing nutrition and wellness. My first book was on nutrition. My clients would go home and eat crap, so I needed to do something about that, too. And then I realized that my clients I was observing, the ones that were successful, was not because I was giving them a better care salad recipe or because I was showing them a better way to squat. It was because they would change their mind. They would change those limiting beliefs about, when you lose weight, you always gain it back, or exercise is hard. It hurts. I hate it. Because, see, in your head, you have that, uh uh. Let’s talk a little bit about the brain. The logical mind is that piece that we use in order to live our life. So you live at a logical level. Most people do. And the logical mind can handle five to nine things at a time. That’s cool. You can multitask, right? You can go grocery shopping. At the same time, you’re on a meeting on your earphones, and then you grab a can of soup on special with one hand. You keep your kid from falling off the cart with your other hand. And then you notice the guy at the back of the store looking at the girl in blue in the seafood department. You notice all this at the same time. That’s cool. You can multitask. But have you ever noticed, let’s say you are driving to a new address, a beautiful day, windows are down, music is on, and then as you get closer to the new address now, you slow down, you start looking at the numbers on the houses. Have you ever caught yourself having to lower the volume on the radio as you’re interesting, right? How is the volume going to make you see the numbers better? Because five to nine pieces of information is not that great after all. We get overwhelmed very quickly. Living at a logical level is like this. You are doing everything you can to build your dream life, and then you want to be a successful entrepreneur or working and going through the ladder of the corporate world. And you need to post on social media. Maybe you need to start a podcast, and then you need to start a meditation course, and then you need to take care of your kids and bring them to sports between your meetings. And then you accept plans from 05:00 a.m. Till 10:00 p.m. And then you are exhausted. That night, you had decided to go back to the gym, but you haven’t used your membership in three months, because by the end of the day, Netflix and a bottle of wine sounds a lot more appealing. And you feel that you’re getting farther and farther away from your dream life. It is like you’re trying to go to New York City, but you’re in an aircraft that is flying to California. It’s never going to work if you stay in that aircraft. And that aircraft is the other part of the brain that I want to talk about. It’s your unconscious mind. The unconscious mind is so much more powerful and fast that it’s never going to work if the aircraft is going the opposite way. And some people ask me, hey, how do I get off that aircraft? Teach me. We don’t want to get off the aircraft. We want to talk to the pilot. Because you can’t get off your own head. You only have one, and we have one brain, and that’s the one you get. Sorry, you can’t get out of it. So you need to talk to the pilot. That pilot is that other part of the brain. Uh, the unconscious mind can handle 2.3 million pieces of information every second. Five to nine for the logical mind, 2.3 million for the unconscious mind. That is where the power is, and that is what you want to tap into. And I call this your personal assistant, m the unconscious mind. It has all the power.
Jonathan DeYoe: Tell us a little bit about your study. Did you stop being a trainer and just go deep into study, or were you studying while you’re being a trainer and learning all the stuff while you’re doing? And then what did you read? What did you listen to? What did you do to sort of develop this program that you built?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: So I did a few different certifications. So I did tap into neuro linguistic programming big time. So did two different certification, two master certifications as well. In neurolinguistic programming. I did read so many books on neuroscience on quantum physics, and I also did coaching certification because that’s a bit a different world. I did specialized work in trauma therapy as well, PTSD, working with army vet, working with people that have been abused or going through traumatic events, which, by the way, you don’t need to have been in a house on fire in order to experience trauma. Sometimes it’s a car accident or people are afraid to fly, or it’s just a bad conversation that you keep replaying in your head. And that qualifies as PTSD. We just don’t know it, and it’s keeping us from growing our business or whatever. So I did a lot of different trainings to get to what I do, and what I do specifically is a bit. It’s different. If I can explain to you with a kitchen renovation. So let’s say you are doing a kitchen renovation. The first thing that you want to do is you want to know what you want in your kitchen. You’ll make a folder and then you’ll put samples in that folder of these cupboards, this countertop, this backsplash, this hardwood floor, paint chip. And that’s the first step. That’s the first step of my system, the DNA system. So it’s the desires. What do you want? So people do that and they make a list. Smart goals, vision boards. Right. And it’s great, but it’s not the end of it all. It’s great to know what you want, but if you could just look at your vision board and it was the end of it, everybody would be living on a deserted island, sipping martinis, driving mercedes bands. So it’s the first part. It’s important to know what you want, but it’s not a kitchen. It’s the folder with samples in it. You can’t cook in that folder. It doesn’t have a kitchen. Part number three is to make that kitchen happen, and that’s what people do. They go from part number one to part number three right away. They skip step number two and they try to implement new habits in their life. They try to do something with that information that they gathered, and they tried to implement that in their life. But it would be like trying to put the cupboards over top of the existing cupboards in your kitchen. Trying to put the island over top of the existing island. It’s not going to work because you need to gut out the old kitchen before you can. So you need the step. 2d is for desire, first step, and for new you. And then three, actualize, uh, of the DNA system. So then you implement your new habits, and then you create the life that you want. But step two, that’s what I do. We gut out the old kitchen. You get rid of the limiting belief, all the negative self talk, the bad habits, anger, fear, hurt, sadness, guilt, trauma, all the stuff that is holding you back, because it’s not necessary to carry all this luggage anymore. With different studies that I’ve done, I’ve created some processes that are very light, very easy and transformational. So that’s what I’m known for, is the quick and easy. I don’t have a couch with a Kleenex box that I give to my clients where we open up our guts and talk about our problems. There’s none of this. It’s very light. There’s focus on what you learned from this and moving on a lot more than holding on and talking about the past, because your brain never knows if it’s not happening again. So if you talk about it, your brain will reshoot 1400 chemicals through your bloodstream to make you relive it, because it doesn’t know it’s not happening again.
Jonathan DeYoe: This is fascinating because I wonder how, and I asked this question from people that don’t quite get the question. So I’m simply put this in a way that’s totally understandable here. I wonder how our culture and our social media ends up affecting, because if I open the paper, I read, this is bad, that’s horrible. This person is this, and it’s bad and it’s bad, bad, and it’s horrible and it’s bad. And if I turn on the radio, I hear a lot about what’s not working. There’s global warming and there’s other stuff that’s bad and it’s horrible and it’s bad. And I do know I have links to a couple of different websites that are positive. And so I do have to pull myself out of the negative and sort of find the positive to sort of build myself up. How do you think that sort of cultural stance or that negativity bias ends up affecting or infecting our outcomes? Because we believe in it and we just sort of wallow in it. Uh, how do you turn that corner and get out of that?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Exactly. And I will give you a specific tool after this, but I’ll answer the question first. So that unconscious mind I was telling you about that has 2.3 million pieces of information every second that it can handle, that personal assistant is receiving information all the time. That negative output that you’re talking about and that tints our orders that we give our personal assistant. So pretend you have this personal assistant with a notepad standing beside you, with a notepad writing down everything that you say or think, and it makes it happen. That personal assistant job is to make you write about whatever you think. The problem is people wake up in the morning, they look at themselves in the mirror, and they say, I’m so tired. I’m so stressed out. Oh, I think I’m gaining weight. Something. Your personal assistant writes it down. Writes that. Tired, stressed out, gaining weight. Okay, perfect. I got this. I’m going to put that on my list. Tired, tired. Oh, I know. I’m going to keep her awake all night. She’s not going to be able to sleep, so she’s going to be really tired in the morning. Check. Stressed out. Oh, I’m going to make her delete a very important appointment in our calendar. Well, that’s going to be stressful. Check. Gaining weight. Oh, I know. I can definitely find a chocolate bar or something deep fried for her to eat today. Check. So your personal assistant is listening to everything, all the input. And if all the input is negative, then it tints the way we talk to our personal assistant. And not only the output, the external stressors. And life, uh, is going fast, right? There’s so much change, and as fast as things are going right now, it’s never going to be this slow again. We have to adapt, and change is not going anywhere terrifying. I’m not there to give you a magic wand to say, here’s how to stop change. But what I do with my clients is I make them be the best version of themselves. Because my clients and I do a lot of corporate work in organization, with ceos, with leaders, decisions they make, and mostly decisions that everybody makes, are worth thousands of dollars. You can’t afford to make a decision based on limiting belief, negative self talk, stress, and because you’re panicking, and then you make a decision quick, or you’re in the kitchen cooking, and then you’re thinking about the bills you have to pay. You have a problem at work, or there’s something that you can’t figure out, or your computer crashed or whatever it is. Your daughter comes behind you and says, hey, dad. And you turn around and you go, what? And you’re like, oh, this is not how I wanted to respond. But you responded with whatever was on top of this drawer as, um, you have access in the drawer of yourself. You have access to you at your best, you know, you wanted to say, yes, sweetie, what can I do for you? You know, the answer. We have the answers. We know what to do. But there’s so much crap that’s accumulated on top that my job is to get rid of what’s in that drawer so that when you open the drawer, you say, yes, sweetie, what can I do for you? And you are at your best, because when you are at your best, when you have access to that 2.3 million piece of information every second, you have all the answers. You are awesome. You know what you should be doing. And sometimes, because we’re tinted with all this negative output and tinted by our own language, which research show that 70% of our thoughts are negative, another piece that you might like, 85% of people suffer from lack of self confidence in at least one area of their life. It is real. So we need to reprogram this negative self talk. And then I’m going to wait for the question because you might say, well, how do you do that? So I’ll answer whatever you ask, but I have a really cool tool that you can use to start lifting the countertop and start getting rid of the old kitchen.
Jonathan DeYoe: So I think we can admit that the mindset is really important on the path to success. Right? So admitting that. So you’re talking about. You don’t talk about the old stuff, you don’t talk about the feelings, you don’t talk about the. But what do you do when somebody comes and says their origin story isn’t great? They come from poverty. They have been told their entire lives that they are awful and they’ll never be successful. And how do you break that? It seems like it’s a privilege to be able to say, from where we sit, we’re successful. Look at what we’ve done. And we both probably came from difficult backgrounds. I don’t even know your background that much, but it’s a privilege to be able to say, look where we are. What about people that really are underprivileged? Really don’t have anyone believing in them, really have gotten the negative messages. How do you transition that? That seems really hard.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Exactly. At one point between the age of zero and seven, decisions are made, neural pathways are created. So in our brain we have these little dendrites that want connections. So we have 7000 billions neurological connection in an adult average brain. So an average adult brain has 7000 different connection. These dendrites connect once and then twice. And then there’s other possibilities as well as babies, because babies have four more zeros of possible neurological connection. And the ones that are used more often will create a synapse and that is the connection that will remain for the rest of our life, and we will lose the other possibilities. Okay, so just to come back to that 7000 billions. You know how many connections are on the Internet? Just 100 billions to connect the whole world. 100 billions. Our brain, 7000 billions, just saying, right? So there’s a lot of connections in our brain, and babies have a quadrillion possibilities. So that’s four more zeros than on the Internet. So these synapses, I did say the ones that are used the most will remain. I did not say the most positive, beautiful ones. So you just said, what happens to somebody who had a terrible childhood, where their parents were like, don’t be stupid, you’re awful. You’ll never, um, sum up to anything or did not have even parents or great positive reinforcement. What happens is that they connected. They created neurological connection that would lead to self sabotage. So picture that you are living in a home. You come out of your house, and then you are in a cornfield, and there is a path that has been flattened out. Right. And I don’t know if you’ve been walking in corn. I’m a small town girl, so I’ve ran and all good. Thank you. So you know what it is, right? And with my cousins, we would run in the cornfield. And if you’re for the first one, it’s cool because the second person behind you will receive it right in their face. And that’s kind of cool because corn bounces back. But then the third person, the corn will kind of bounce back, but not as fast, so it’s not going to really slam them in the forehead. It won’t be as funny. But then the fourth cousin, because my dad had 23 siblings, so let me tell you, I have a lot big family, french canadian family, so lots of cousins. And by the 10th cousin, it’s a flattened path. Now, uh, the corn is not bouncing. It’s broken, it’s flattened out, and it’s almost a highway. That’s what happens with your neurological connections. So whenever you want to change that, you come out of your house, there’s a flat path that is super easy to go. It’s like a highway. Or you can start walking on the corn, but it will bounce back in your face probably a few times, and then you will want to have maybe a breakdown, or maybe you’ll have a tendency of wanting to go back to the old path, which leads to self sabotage. And I’m not good enough in all this, but if you keep walking on the good corn to create a new path, you can recreate a different neural pathway and reroute a few things. And I’ll give you, uh, a tool so that you can start rerouting some of these neural pathways. The key here is to understand that what you’re doing is changing something that your brain has believed to be true for a long time. And between the age of zero and seven, you experience hurt for the first time. Fear, anger, guilt, all these powerful emotion are designed to teach us, uh, something. They’re like delivery trucks. So, every time that you feel an emotion like that, your small, little child brain does not know what to do with it. So, see that as a delivery truck in your driveway that’s bringing you a gift, a package, a positive learning. The problem is, whenever we feel that way, we experience, let’s say, fear, or you experience hurt or anger. We, uh, don’t have time to feel it and to look for the learning. What is in the truck? Why is this truck in my driveway? So you’re ignoring it, and then people are smiling because you’re in front of clients, so everything is fine. Oh, yeah. And then you smile, and then you’re with coworkers and your coworkers. Are you okay? Oh, yeah, I’m fine. Everything’s good. And then your kids are asking at home, are you okay, daddy? Are you okay, mommy? Oh, yeah. Mommy’s fine. Everything’s good. So then we ignore it, and we don’t open the door for the package. And then there’s another truck that comes in the driveway and another truck. And, uh, first thing you know is that you go into disability or anxiety and burnout because there’s too many trucks that we did not open the door for. The only goal of this truck in your driveway was to deliver a package to you. A positive learning, a delivery takes between 30 and 90 seconds. It’s created in your prefrontal cortex. You go to one loop, and you exit the loop. You receive the delivery, and that’s what children do for the first time. We’ve seen that in kids. They’re super happy. Then temper tantrum for 90 seconds, and then they’re happy again because a delivery does not take that long. But as we age, we go through another loop and another loop, and we stay stuck in that same loop instead of exiting it, because we start ignoring the learnings, we don’t take them anymore. So here’s how we do it. We need to figure out, what are we learning? So, as soon as something happens to you and you’re uncomfortable, you could say, okay, I’m uncomfortable. I’m not liking it. I’m allowed. The Girl on Jonathan’s podcast said we’re allowed 30 to 90 seconds. Perfect. So I’m going to take a deep breather, and I’m going to breathe in for 30 to 90 seconds while I find my package. And instead of choosing that, because in your prefrontal cortex, all emotions are created equally, you don’t know, your brain doesn’t know the difference between anxiety or excitement. So if you choose, it’s anxiety, you will pollute yourself with 1400 chemicals, cortisol. That’s going to slow you down. Or you could choose that it’s excitement or curiosity, and you’re like, I’m feeling this way. It’s uncomfortable. Okay, I’m going to do my 30 to 92nd. How do I get out that loop? Oh, I need to figure out my package. Oh, I have a truck in my driveway. Cool. Okay. I’m going to get better at something. This is making me grow. I’m learning something. It’s making me get to the next step of my journey, and I will figure this out, and then I will get better at this. That’s exciting. If you go into excitement and curiosity, your brain will send feel good chemicals through your bloodstream and make you very resourceful to face whatever it is that you’re facing. And you’re a lot more resourceful when you’re fed with oxytocin, dopamine, serotonin, or any of these endorphins or feel good chemicals. That’s what you want in your bloodstream.
Jonathan DeYoe: Can you walk us through, like, a very specific example? I think we’re talking, like, very high level. And so something happens, you have a response that’s negative. How do you get out of that loop? I think this is the tool you have. What is this tool?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: So I’ll give you the specific two step technique. So I do also have a document called 22 questions, so you could go download firstname.lastname@example.org. 22 questions is, how do you get out of stress? So first question is, what am I learning? And then there’s 21 other questions. So what am I learning? Is very important to figure out now the specific technique to get out of an emotional loop or get out of a limiting belief. You heard yourself say something in your head, and you know it’s not serving you. You heard yourself say, oh, I’m so stressed out all the time. And then you’re like, oh, no, what did I just say? My personal assistant just wrote that on their notepad. I don’t want to be stressed. I don’t want to order my personal assistant to be stressed because what’s going to happen if you tell your personal assistant you want to be stressed, it’s going to make sure that you are going to be stressed because it’s listening to what you say. So you have to tell a personal assistant what you want, not what you don’t want. Like, you’re not going to tell your painter to paint your kitchen, not blue, because your contractor is going to be like, what color do you want it? You can’t say not blue. And people do this to me all the time. It’s Nathalie help me. I don’t want to be stressed anymore. I don’t want to be impatient with my kids, and I don’t want to be broke. Stress, rush, impatient, broke. So you need to tell your personal system what you want. So here’s how you do it. You’ve heard of affirmations. A lot of people do affirmations. And the problem is affirmations don’t work, Jonathan, if you don’t believe them. And very often there’s way too big of a disconnect between the reality and the affirmation. When I work with the think yourself wealthy program, with people that are in deep financial struggles, it’s not going to work for me to say, okay, smile and repeat after me, I am rich, or, I’m working with people that want to lose weight. They have, like, over 200 pounds to lose. I’m not going to say, put your hands on your hips, look at yourself in the mirror and say, I, um, am thin. Your personal assistant is like, no, we’re not. Oh, I know. We must be watching a vampire movie. Vampires don’t exist. I’m not writing this down. This is so not. It’s just not talking to me. So here’s the technique. First, you’re going to repeat in your head the statement that you just heard that is polluting you. M. I’m not good enough. I’m so stressed. So you just hear yourself, I’m so stressed all the time. Then you say, wait a minute. I used to be stressed all the time. So you repeat what you just heard. What I used to. In the past, I used to be stressed all the time. So now your personal assistant hears that and it says, oh, yeah, stressed out. I have this on my list right here. Yeah, you’re talking to me. What can I do for you? What, are we talking about this in the past anyway? Are we done with this? Do I scratch that off or what? Perfect. Now it’s time for step number two. Step number two is a progressive statement. A progressive statement starts with, I am willing to learn, or I’m in the process of. Okay, so step number one. I used to think I was stressed all the time. Now I’m willing to learn how to change that. How to change that is very generic. And you can use that. Ah. About any different things you can use, or you can go more specific. Now I’m in the process of building a balanced life. Now I’m willing to learn how to say no, or I’m willing to learn how to meditate. I’m, um, willing to learn how to be more calm. So now you change it with a progressive statement, because now your personal assistant is listening. I used to. Now I’m willing to learn. So, I used to believe that when you lived paycheck to paycheck, that when you made more money, you would spend more and live paycheck to paycheck. And now I’m in the process of changing that. I’m willing to learn how to manage my money better. I’m, um, in the process of people hear themselves say, what’s, uh, an example that everybody says I’m not good enough? Impostor syndrome, right. Oh, everybody’s so much better than me. Oh, my gosh, I wish I was like that. Or I’m not good with technology, bad with technology. A lot of people say that. I used to think I was bad with technology. Now I’m willing to learn where it is that I have to click to go on this podcast, or, uh, where is that I have to click to go on zoom or whatever, right?
Jonathan DeYoe: As a mindfulness practitioner, I sit every single day and monitor my breath. And then I notice when my brain goes someplace besides my breath, and I bring it back to my breath, and I notice it goes someplace, and then I bring it back. And I bring it back, and I bring it back thousands and thousands of times. Is that what it takes? Are we talking for this one two step process? Is it thousands of times to make the change? I mean, do you have to constantly be aware? It’s stressing me out thinking about how aware I’m going to have to be to catch all these things.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Okay, let’s say that I’m a brain dentist, and I help people with their cavities, right? So I have special tools to do the fillings. And this two step technique is great. It’s a start. It’s like a crowbar to start lifting up the countertop. It’s like you’re going to be brushing your teeth now very well. You’re going to floss, you’re going to do the mouthwash. But if you have an old cavity, it’s not by brushing your tooth really hard on that cavity that the cavity is going to go away. That’s what I do. And it’s not something that I recommend you take on to do on your own. I don’t even do that on my own, on me, because I can’t do something at a logical level that needs to happen at an, um, unconscious level. That’s what I do. So that’s a really good step that you can definitely help with that technique. If you start brushing your teeth really well, you will prevent a lot of other cavities, and you will be able to respond with these strategies, these tools, the list of questions, and ask yourself, okay, will freaking out help right now? Am I sure that. Am I making this up? Potentially? I’m potentially just making up this thing that I’m repeating in my head, or has it already happened and it’s over and I’m just repeating it in my head? So there’s a lot of great questions on the document I was telling you about, the thinkosoft.com 22 questions. So you will slowly be able to have an awareness of transforming it in your head, and you can move from stage one to stage four of learning. And these stages are stage one of learning, you probably have heard of them, is unconscious incompetence. So first, you don’t even know you’re not good at it. You don’t even know it’s a thing. You’re unconsciously incompetent. You’re not good at it, but you don’t even know that it exists. Stage number two is you’re consciously incompetent, so you’re not good at it, but at least you’re conscious about it because now you know it exists. Oh, I didn’t know I could reprogram my negative self talk. I had zero idea. Now you’re aware of it because you’re listening to this podcast, and now you still don’t know how to do this, but at least you’re conscious that you’re incompetent. Stage number three is conscious competence. And that’s what I’m hoping for today, for everyone, is to now say, okay, wait, I just heard something nasty in my head. Okay, so what’s my technique again? Oh, yes, step number one. Okay, yeah, repeat it. In the past, I used to think that I was not good enough. Okay, I used to. And what’s the step number two again? So you’re consciously competent, and then you’ll, oh, where’s my list? Where are my 22 questions? Oh, yeah, it’s this. And eventually, with a lot of practice, with at least 64, 66 days, because a lot of people think that the 21 days is still valid. That’s an old thing. The 21 days to change a habit. 21 days was based on studies that had been done on a plastic surgeon that would give somebody a new nose. It would take them 21 days to get used to their new plastic surgery. The newer, more so. That was in the 70s, in the 1970s, and now moving forward in the years 2000, there were more studies that were made about how long does it take to implement a new habit, especially in our brain and new life habits? And it’s more like 66 days in average. So you’re going to do that with conscious competence for at least two and a half months. And then eventually you will move to unconscious competence. So then you’ll be able to not even think about it. Somebody tells you, hey, don’t forget your lunch. And you’ll turn around and say, yeah, remember it. Thanks. Because you’ll immediately turn the words around, you’ll immediately think a different way, and you’ll immediately go look for the learning. Something’s going to happen to you, and you’ll be like, oh, okay, that kind of sucks. Right now. I’m not feeling great. Oh, wait, what’s my learning? Oh, I’m going to be better at this. Cool. Done. Truck leaves the driveway. Moving forward. If you want to fast track the process, that’s what I do. So, uh, then we do the fillings, and then you don’t have to deal with this. Exactly.
Jonathan DeYoe: Two months and a few days seems simple. I don’t know if you know this, but the Dalai Lama talks about, try different meditations, and he says, just give it a trial run. And for the Dalai Lama, the trial run is ten years. So two months and a few days seems like a pretty easy, uh, thing to try it. Just give it a shot and see what it is. Do you know who Lou Holtz is? You’ve heard that name?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Have heard this name? Remind me.
Jonathan DeYoe: Well, he has a saying, right? When everything is said and done, a lot more gets said than done. And I’m wondering, just to really simplify this for people, if someone’s out there and they’re swimming in the negative soup and they can’t get themselves out of it, what is the one thing they should do? What is one thing they can do today, I realize you gave us this tool. Is that the recommendation, or is it go read a book? Is it, how do we start injecting these positive things into our lives so we can change the mindset? That’s the first part of the question. And then the second part of the question is, I’ve interviewed probably a dozen folks on mindset here, and there are thousands of people that talk about mindset. And there’s all kinds of programs and all kinds of people that talk about, they can fix it. They can fix it. Is there anyone that you read and you think, this person is crazy? They should not be talking, and don’t name the name, but is there a process or something that you’re like, I wish people wouldn’t hear this because it’s not beneficial? So what’s one thing that people can do and then one people that people might hear about and they really shouldn’t and maybe should just ignore?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Got it. So what is something that people can do is reach out and ask for help? Because it is m interesting how we love and we connect so well when somebody is vulnerable, when somebody comes to you and say, I need your help, immediately, you start loving them, right? When somebody says, I’m vulnerable, I’m not understanding this. Can you help me? And we’re like, oh, yeah, absolutely. I want to help you. We love people that need our help, and yet we don’t ask for help, which is weird, because why don’t we want to be that person that is loved for being vulnerable and for asking for help? When I say the answer to your question, what should people do? I’m saying reach out. And I’m saying surround yourself with people that will lift your average. So if you look at the five people that are the closest to you, Jim Ron, you are the average of the five people that you spend the most time with. So if you are the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room. You’re lifting everybody else’s average. So be the uncomfortable person that is surrounding themselves with people that are so much better than you and more positive. So look at the people around you. And very often the question that comes after this is like, yeah, but what if it’s your family that are super negative and they are draining you? It’s easier with a friend, because if you have a friend that every time you go for coffee with them, you come back and you’re sick. I’m exhausted. Oh, my gosh. That’s negative nellie right there. And that they are complaining about the whole world is there to get them right. With a friend and with family, with anybody around you. We love them. They are people in our life. First step, you try to help them. First thing you do is you ask them what would you like instead? And maybe you can tell them, hey, ah, I was on this podcast and I just realized that whenever you talk about the problem, and that’s going to be the answer to your next question after what should you not do? Right? Whenever you talk about the problem, your brain doesn’t know it’s not happening again, so it’s reshooting 1400 chemicals through your bloodstream. And guess what? The person you’re telling the problem to having a coffee. And you say, oh my gosh, this guy on the highway this morning just completely cut me off and I’m still upset at it. And then you’re angry and then you stay to hang this person, forgot about you, never even noticed you as they cut you off the highway, but you’re still angry about that. And the person you’re telling the story to, their brain doesn’t know it’s not happening to them. So they shoot 1400 chemicals to their bloodstream so that they pollute themselves as well. And uh, that’s what I do for a living. So that’s why I don’t want my clients to start telling me all their stuff because I’ll get polluting myself all the time. And that’s why you’re watching a vampire movie. You’re afraid in your living room, you know, you’re in your pajamas, it’s fine. There’s no vampires in your living room. You know they’re not real. But you’re afraid anyway because your brain does not know it’s not happening for real. And when you retell a story that happens in the past to someone, your brain doesn’t know it’s not happening again, their brain doesn’t know it’s not happening to them. Everybody gets polluted. Do not do that. So number one question you equip yourself with is what would you like instead? And what are you going to do about it? And you’re very resourceful. I trust you. I know you will figure it out and tell them, hey, I was listening to this podcast and then she said that we had a personal assistant in our head. And now you just told your personal assistant that you want life to suck. So your personal assistant is going to make sure that it happens. And if you start being happy or if they say, oh my gosh, I’m so unhealthy, I ate exercise and I’m not getting back in shape. And when I lose weight, I gain it back, whatever it is. If you start exercising and you start feeling better and then you start feeling stronger and you start losing weight, your personal system is going to go in panic mode and say, oh, no, I’m not doing my job. She said I have this. The order is clear on the list. She needs to be fat. She said she needed to be overweight, she needed to hate exercise, and now she’s liking it. She’s getting fit and strong. What can I do? Oh, I know. I’m going to make her fall on the sidewalk. So then she’s going to hurt herself. She’s not going to be able to train anymore and she’s going to gain the weight back. Check. I’ve done my job. So tell your friend around you that. Are these negative draining people? Try to help them with that information that, hey, your brain is listening to this. Careful, you’re just telling your personal assistant what you want. So what do you want instead? What do you want instead? So what do you want to say to your personal assistant? What would you like? Well, I would like to like exercise, maybe. Okay, so find something that you like. What are you going to do about it? Be in resourceful mode. If you find out that the person you’re telling and you’re trying to help is completely in a different level because people are different stepping stone in our life and we’re going up the levels, let’s say, and they are to be staying at this level and you have to move on, then sometimes you just don’t see them as often anymore because they don’t want to be helped. They just want to complain and they want somebody to tell them, oh, that sucks. Tell me more. Really? They did that? Oh, that’s awful. If that’s all they want to hear, then you move on. If they don’t want to be helped, if they’re your mom, if they’re your sister, it’s a little harder to say you’re not going to be related to me anymore because you love them. There’s family bond. If they don’t want to be helped, you could help yourself by seeing them less often or for shorter times. Instead of going for dinner, go for lunch or coffee or skip one. Oh, I’m so sorry, I have to cancel today. It’s not going to happen. And then you see them less often and then you change the buttons because usually these people are pushing your buttons. That’s why you have your triggers. And they know how to push them. So you change the way you respond. And that’s what I do. I remove people’s triggers. So then you don’t have to respond to an event or, uh, a comments or a behavior in that specific way. You were just trained by habit to be upset as soon as they say this, because it’s a pet peeve of yours. And now you realize that, wait a minute, I don’t need to be impacted by that. And again, just say, oh, mom. You’re just being mom right now. And that’s it. As if you had just run out of toothpaste. You don’t get all upset when you run out of toothpaste, but you can react that way to another type of event that used to make you so upset when your mom or your sister would say something and you don’t have to be. You could differentiate the emotional connection to the event. Does that make sense?
Jonathan DeYoe: It sounds like those. That’s perfect answer. It sounds like. And I appreciate the tools that I can apply to myself. I used to start with that, and now I’m becoming right, that combo. But it looks like you can also apply the same thing to somebody else, and that’s really what someone comes and they’re sort of toxic. What would you rather do? You’re sort of saying you’re giving them the tool to kind of lift themselves out of this mire and keep yourself from going in the mire as well. I think the second part of that, leaving a friend or a family member or less time, that’s very difficult. Also, sometimes you have to do it, and, uh, I totally get that. Is there anything we have not touched on that you really want our audience to know about?
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: They did some research on brains. There’s such a thing as the brain Olympics of people that are really good at memorizing stuff. I’m not sure if you’re aware of this. Worldwide games, and they have to memorize two shuffled decks of cards in that order, and then they have 1 minute to do that, or there’s 200 pictures with names. They have 1 minute to memorize everybody’s name. And then anyway, people that win these games, they have done some research on their brain. So they tested these people’s brains, and you know what they found out, jonathan? Their brain is average. That’s great news for you and I because my brain is probably very much average, too. And if these people have figured out how to really tap into the power of their brain and can do these amazing stuff, things with their brains, so can we you have and everybody that’s listening, you have the most powerful and complex structure of the universe at your service, and we can tap into it. And that’s the biggest message that I would like to leave you with, is trust your power. You are absolutely amazing if you have a brain. I’m not sure if everybody that’s listening to the podcast does have one. I would like to think that, yes, I hope so.
Jonathan DeYoe: Tell us how people can connect with you. Where do they find you if they want to reach out? And then social media, whatever.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Thinkyourself.com is my website. You can go to thinkyourself.com schedule. I’m happy to have a free virtual coffee with anyone in your audience. My email is Nathalie with an email@example.com. And all my social media are either Nathalie p. Nathalie p. Thinkyourself. You’ll find me on different platforms. There’s one thing that I haven’t said, and I know you have a hard stop. And I’ll keep my story as short as possible about money, because we believe that money will make us happy. And I do work with different, uh, organization in Haiti, and I don’t have to tell you that Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the world. And one night, I’m teaching the kids the circle of excellence. And it’s a technique. You draw a circle, imaginary circle on the ground. And when you don’t feel good, you step in the circle, you power pose, and it makes you feel better. So they’re listening. They’re attentive. They’re always smiling. I love these kids. And one of the young girl, Angelina, asks, okay, wait, when are we going in the circle again? And then I say, well, you know, when you’re not happy, when you don’t feel good. So she says, aren’t we happy all the time? So now I’m like, I’m just about to cry. I don’t know what to say. And I said, you know what? Uh, never mind. This is a technique we use in Canada. This is just for us. When we’re not happy, we do this. You don’t need this technique here. You guys are always happy. Yeah, that’s what I said. So Juvan slay, one of the twin brothers, grabs my hand, and he says, what? Uh, you are not happy in Canada. You have everything in Canada. And then they all come to hug me, because by this time, I’m bawling and I can’t speak anymore. And they’re all hugging me to console me because poor me. I’m not happy in Canada.
Jonathan DeYoe: The goal is never money.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Yes. If these little human beings that have nothing can be happy all the time, I think we’re going to be. Yeah.
Jonathan DeYoe: Thanks very much for the story, Nathalie Thanks for coming on. All this stuff will be in the show notes. Thank you very much.
Nathalie Plamondon-Thomas: Thank you for having me.