As you believe, so you become….
These words were painted on the kitchen wall of my childhood home for decades. And if that weren’t enough, my mother managed to say them to me at least once a week. Way before the researchers spent years studying mindset, my mother knew the importance of mindset in creating possibilities.
While we are all born with a great capacity to learn through failure, <link Learn to Fail or Fail to Learn>, by the age of three, we tend to move in one of two directions. A fixed mindset, according to Carol Dweck, PhD, says that individuals who succeed do so because of their talent or skills. A growth mindset says that we learn because we try, and fail, and try again.
Mindset can play into how we react to co-workers or family members <Are your Buttons getting pushed?>. Do you have someone regularly grates on your nerves, acts in a way that is offensive or just generally ticks you off? The reality is, what they say and do is a reflection of them; how your respond is about YOU. Using mindset tricks, we can trick our brain so our buttons don’t get pushed as much!
Mindset also goes into our relationships, friendships and careers – and when each one of those end. Are you struggling to get over the end of something that once was so magical and central to your life and identity? There are ways to get over that loss easier and sooner. <Heartbreak is so heartbreaking>
Most importantly, mindset plays into how we face adversity. Several years ago, I had a number of life events that knocked me down. My mindset spiraled down, and I decided to learn more about how to change. What I learned was that being stoic – the “stiff upper lip” stoic of today’s world was not the answer. BUT, learning from the great Stoic philosophers – Seneca, Marcus Aruious, _____ was a totally different story! Stoicism isn’t about pretending bad things are happening; it’s about accepting fear, sadness and even anxiety as part of life. By embracing the emotion, we can control our reaction to it. <The upside of being Stoic>
What’s most exciting is that we have the ability to change our mindset through conscious choices and actions.
We can use our mindset change habits, and in changing our habits, we then expand our positive mindset! <link> When a fantastic client was trying to break a bad habit, they kept saying “I just have to stop. Why is it so hard to stop doing XXXX?” Simple, because they were focused on NOT doing XXXX, they wanted it more and more. Try this…
Do NOT think about a purple elephant.
Do NOT think about whether it is an adult elephant or a young elephant.
Do NOT think about whether it’s a child’s toy or a movie character.
Do NOT think about if it can speak or only trumpet like real elephants.
Do NOT think about what color spots it has.
How did you do?
When we shifted the conversation to the big goal – “I want to be on the top of my game because my business is expanding and this habit is getting in the way of my performance” – changing the habit became easier.
How we use our words can have a significant impact on our mindset. The use of YES, AND, and YET are all key to creating more powerful messages for us and those around us. My personal favorite is YET, because it focuses on our future potential
We also need to think about our daily actions and how they impact our mindset. If we are only focused on menial tasks, we limit our ability to learn. When we think we have all the answers, we stop asking questions that could lead to profound realizations. What we DO day-in and day-out trains our brains to believe that is who we ARE. <Who’s taking the notes and doing the laundry?>
As we shift our mindset, we start learning more, doing more and reaching our potential.
And all of those can lead to success <Act like you have it>. One of my clients was hoping for a promotion in their job, but it hadn’t happened YET. We worked together on how they could act as if they had the new job. They changed their behavior, how they interacted with their peers and those who had been promoted, and their approach to work. In just a few months, they started getting attention. Then they were assigned higher-level, more complex and visible projects. Co-workers started assuming they had been promoted, and eventually, the promotion came. It was still a lot of hard work, but the client met their goal by shifting their mindset.
My mother – as usual – was right. As you believe, so you become.