Mel Robbins has always been an awesome role model to me.

I loved her book, “The 5 Second Rule.” That rule was about how you can take a quick action by simply counting down like: 5-4-3-2-1!  Blast off!  (Take your action!) To this day, I actually say blast off when I do something that seems a little hard – like jumping into a cold shower, or getting out of bed or hitting the gym. It’s hard to get out of a hot bath on a freezing winter day!

Of course there are bigger actions, haha, that you can take. But you get the idea. It all starts with the little ones.

So this book, “The High 5 Habit” is another mind hack. And in it she shares this concept: give yourself a high five each time you see yourself in the mirror. Do this “especially in the morning.”

OK you might be wondering, “What? That’s dumb, or that’s silly.”

That’s what we said about the first book! And no kidding I use that little hack all the time!

So, Robbins actually shares these doubts throughout the book and takes a lot of time to go into the research of why this is truly a life-changing act.

“Give yourself a high five each time you see yourself in the mirror.”

One of the biggest barriers we have in achieving anything – like going back to school – takes a certain level of self-confidence. It takes a certain level of self-love to push through the difficult times. I always hear that common phrase “believe in yourself because nobody else will.” This is exactly why Robbins is sharing this idea. We have to find a way to cheer for ourselves and empower ourselves, and love ourselves.

We are often encouraging others with our support and positive feedback. You see this at sporting events or in certain work environments. We are often so helpful at boosting others and helping them feel cared for and noticing the things they did well. However, oftentimes people look at themselves in the mirror with negative, critical feedback. We might even pick apart our physical appearance and then move onto other reasons why we aren’t deserving of everything we want.

This is toxic behavior and must change!

This is why doing the opposite – and cheering yourself on with a high five – has such a powerful effect. If you start the day looking at the mirror – and give your reflection a high five and words of encouragement – your day will be better as a result.

Robbins stresses not to be fake and say things you don’t believe about yourself, but rather start with a place of self love – and you will grow your confidence as a result. This will get easier and feel better and more authentic each day. Robbins herself reports feeling happier, a better mood, and more energy.

She recommends that you state your intention for the day, and then give yourself the high five.

State your intention for the day, and then give yourself the high five.

And give yourself the high five!

Mel even thinks about how she going to show up for the person in the mirror.

The science behind the high five habit is simple as well. We are so use to receiving high fives from a young age that our brain responds with a release of dopamine and feel good emotions. This is because you have a lifetime of positive programming ingrained in your subconscious to positively respond to the act of receiving a high five.

Think back to a moment in your own life when you were encouraged by someone with a high five. Even a trivial experience made you felt good in that moment.

For myself it was speech and debate in high school and placing in the Finals at one of our meets. The reason this experience felt so good was because of the response I received from my peers in the form of “high fives” and “good jobs.”

So to say it again, what this high five does, is to bring your intention into your day to day life. Imagine if you could start your day with a dopamine release centered toward self- encouragement. That’s an awesome idea! And it’s similar to a rocket taking off. And it does build confidence to know that you are on your team!

One thing to be clear about is this isn’t here to make your life perfect or to fix devastating experiences you are going through. But it does boost your love and self-worth to be able to face life’s-challenges with a greater sense of support from yourself. It is like receiving positive words of “this is going to be ok.” You are doing this for yourself every day.”

And every day adds up, doesn’t it?

Robbins encourages people to try giving yourself high-fives for 5 days. See how you feel as a result. Notice the changes in your morning as your productivity, mood, and happiness increase. She also has a community of people who are living what she calls a “high five life.” These are people who are trying to empower themselves and others to have breakthroughs and encourage each other to pursue what makes them happy.

Check out her video on the High Five Habit here:

At Sunflower Counseling we are always looking for new tools to share with people to overcome difficult experiences and manage emotional distress and situational challenges. This is another tool to add to everything else you are trying. And it’s never one thing. It’s the combined effort of all these little things. And there’s no “easy way” to get through this life experience.

But sometimes these little tricks work! And they can add up! I’ll take every trick I can get because life is hard. And being open and vulnerable enough to try these little ideas adds an insularity to the difficulty of life. Plus, it’s even kind of fun once you start doing it! To say the least?

Try this for 5 days and see how you feel.

Keep in mind it is the smallest changes that have the biggest impact when done daily over time.