When you hear the word mindset, what do you think of first?
Maybe you think about having a summer mindset. Your thoughts are centered around getting to the beach one last time, making the most of the long summer daylight hours, or squeezing in one more home project. This mindset may influence you to make decisions involving more relaxation, less structure, and more fun.
Or maybe you think of a healthy mindset — with thoughts of organic foods, working out, and tracking your daily movements on a fitbit. A healthy mindset may guide decisions which involve whole foods, parking a bit farther away from your destination, and no chips..or less ice cream. :) (Notice I didn't say NO ice cream.)
Right now I have a very strong football mindset! I can’t wait for the NFL season to begin and see my beloved Cleveland Browns unleash their new and highly improved offense led by Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckem Jr. I’m already counting the days to when I turn on CBS at 12:00PM on September 8th to watch James Brown and crew introduce week 1 of the season. Yeeeeeeaaahh!! But I digress.
The point is -- our mindsets shape our perspectives, guide our decisions, and greatly affect how we live our lives.
The dictionary definition of mindset is, “a fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person’s responses to and interpretations of situations.”
Mindsets are powerful! They influence the whole trajectory of our lives. James Allen in his classic, “As a Man Thinketh”, wrote, “You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you...A man is literally what he thinks, his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts.”
What is James saying? He is telling us that our thoughts are so powerful that they literally shape our future reality.
But how often do we stop to evaluate the mindsets that guide our actions? The vast majority of these mindsets reside in the subconscious part of our minds, meaning that we are often not aware of the influence they are having in our attitudes, judgments, and decisions.
This principle is what makes psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Carl Jung’s words so significant. He said it best when he wrote, “Until you make the unconscious, conscious, it will rule your life and you will call it fate.”
The beliefs that spring from your mindset will either limit you or empower you. And the good news is, you get to choose your mindset!
In a new course that I’m developing called “Live Your Legacy,” among other things I’m developing tools to help build a healthy mindset and create a winning inner-game.
This is because when we better understand how we think and how our thinking affects our behavior and relationships, we can use that understanding to train our minds to think new thoughts — to think thoughts that will generate more positive and healthy emotions and actions.
I’ll share more about the course with you in the future, but for today, I want to challenge you to begin considering your mindsets.
What factors influence your decision making? Do they stem from mindsets that empower you — or mindsets that limit you?
As you walk through today — start to think about what you think about. Begin to develop a perspective on the thoughts, beliefs, and mindsets that shape your decision making — and choose to let the beliefs that empower you guide your decision making.
I hope this helps.