The High 5 Habit | Mel Robbins

Summary of: The High 5 Habit: Take Control of Your Life with One Simple Habit
By: Mel Robbins


Embark on a journey of self-discovery and personal transformation with Mel Robbins’s book, ‘The High 5 Habit: Take Control of Your Life with One Simple Habit’. This summary will guide you through the powerful act of high-fiving your reflection, and how this seemingly simple gesture can change your life. As you delve into the book, learn about the scientific research behind high fives, the impact of negative thoughts on your behaviors, and the crucial role of the Reticular Activating System (RAS) in shaping your thoughts. Get ready to cultivate an attitude of gratitude, replace apologies with thankfulness, and develop a stronger sense of self-belief.

High-Five your Reflection

In her book, author Mel Robbins shares her experience of starting her day by high-fiving herself in the mirror. She used to criticize herself but realized that she needed support from within. The high five became a demonstration of her self-belief, making her feel a little better about herself every morning. The act of daily self-cheering reevaluated her important things in life. Rather than voicing self-criticism, she started showering herself with words of love, praise, and encouragement. When we look in the mirror, we face a choice – mull over our failings and life’s problems or take a minute to congratulate and encourage ourselves. Choose wisely and high-five your reflection.

The Science behind High Fives

Mel Robbins recounts her experience running the New York City marathon and how high fives from strangers kept her going. Research also supports the power of high fives in motivating individuals. Three different ways to motivate schoolkids were tested, and high fives were found to be the most effective at making them feel good about their work and keep going. Furthermore, high-fiving yourself can change your brain at a structural level as it puts your brain in a heightened state, making it easier to form new neural connections. Neurobic research suggests that combining a familiar activity with an unfamiliar twist, like high-fiving your reflection, while thinking positively can boost your attitude. Give it a try, and high-five your reflection every morning for five days; you’ll be surprised by the positive difference it makes.

The Danger of Negative Thoughts

Mel Robbins shares her experience of allowing negative thoughts to control her life, leading her to miss out on valuable opportunities. Her self-destructive behaviors were rooted in deeply ingrained habits of ruthless self-criticism and self-doubt. The key message is that negative thoughts can create a spiral of negative behaviors. Strengthening self-belief can break the cycle of failure and self-loathing. Being kind, supportive, and encouraging to oneself is the antidote to negative thoughts.

Clean Your Mind’s Lint Filter

The Reticular Activating System (RAS) acts as the mind’s filter, blocking out unhelpful information and allowing only the most relevant data to reach conscious thought. However, negative and self-limiting thoughts can clog up the RAS, leading to the mind focusing on negative information. The High Five Habit, recommended by Robbins, is the psychological equivalent of cleaning the RAS’s lint filter, peeling away negative emotional residue. By teaching the RAS to focus on positives, the mind can train itself to highlight all the positives in life.

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