“Thoughts are behaviors we haven’t learned to observe yet.” — B.F. Skinner

What is a mindset?  Well, simply put, it’s a way of thinking.

However, we all know our thoughts don’t occur in a vacuum all on their own.  Thoughts have close friends…. and sometimes frenemies…

Our mindset is the collection of thoughts and beliefs that then shape our behaviour and create habits, contributing to the way we feel, think and behave.

So when I start talking about creating a mindset for success, I am talking about

Why we think what we think

How we came to think what we’re thinking (those thoughts didn’t randomly just appear)

Why we believe what we believe

How we came to believe what we believe (yep there was a process here too)

Why we feel the way we feel

How we came to feel the way we feel (have you ever noticed how someone’s pain can be another person’s ecstasy?)

And all of this gets wrapped up in personality, in attitudes and beliefs, and behaviours that form the foundation for the way we expect success to arrive and anticipate the difficulties that achieving success will bring.

And just so we are clear — we don’t change mindsets like we might change a hat.  We can’t just PUT on the mindset of success, when all of our habits, behaviours, feelings, thoughts, attitudes and beliefs have set us up for a mindset of mediocrity, scarcity, fear and limitation.

Mindset is kinda important.  As professionals and clinicians in private practice, the problem is we think we know what our mindset is – but rather we try to force ourselves into the mindset we think we SHOULD have, which is creating all sorts of internal conflict, and we keep doing those same things that aren’t helping us, over and over and over again.

It looks like:

·      Constantly over-booking ourselves with 1:1 clients so we CAN’T create a new service offering

·      Not keeping our clinical notes up to date so that we always have the excuse for “why I hate admin, and therefore won’t do any other admin including bookkeeping because I have to get my notes up to date first……”

·      Like not paying for good coaching or help with business development because surely all that free stuff out there will help me grow into the awesome success I want to be because that’s what all the awesomely successful people did… (please understand this is very tongue in cheek, I have NEVER met a successful entrepreneur —  AKA someone making more money year on year — who hasn’t paid and paid a LOT for good consultation and coaching services)

A mindset doesn’t just arrive one day; it took a while to arrive.  It was being created and cultivated.

A mindset needs to be cultivated.  It needs to have some attention paid to it, which means we need to be prepared to get real, down and dirty with ourselves and ask – what the heck is really going on with my mindset here?

No judgement

No shame

Just curiosity.

We get so driven – driven to succeed, driven to be better.  We use the “ better” and “ success” of others to drive our comparison-itis thinking which becomes our “mindset for success”.  Here are a couple of my personal favourites…

·     “I will be successful when I am as popular as and have as many people in a Facebook group as Allison Salmon Puryear

·      I will be successful when my two-day workshop sells out like Zynny Me’s Bootcamp.

·      “I will be successful when I am able to get 1000s view of my YouTube video.”

·      “I will be successful when I don’t have to market my services any more.”

We shame and blame ourselves for not being skinny enough; tall enough, petite enough, smart enough, compassionate enough, careful enough (enough enough), and we are constantly looking through the lens of lack and timidity.

We just do and do and do and do.  We don’t understand what is driving us to this relentless pursuit of doing to succeed.  And then we get frustrated, disappointed and feel like a failure when our pursuit of success through relentless doing doesn’t yield the results of success we were looking for.

Its dumb!

It lacks foundation. It lacks self-understanding and it lacks self-compassion.

But it is still a mindset!

You see, we can have helpful and UN-helpful mindsets.

And if you aren’t achieving the things in your life, whatever they may be – more freedom, more flexibility, a greater sense of working to live, not living to work, then chances are your Mindset isn’t helping you.

The good news it this – you can change it! (and the crowd goes wild, hurrah!)

The good news is, you have control and you have choices.

The better news is – you don’t have to do it alone.

The first key to cultivating a mindset for success is to understand you.

Why you think, feel and behave the way that you do.  Neuroscience on its own isn’t enough.  Our core needs and drivers while help to build the picture, they aren’t enough; personality when we add it to the mix, is also adding to our understanding but it’s not enough – it’s not until we have all of these elements working together – our neuropsychology; our personality, and our  drivers that we can start to understand why we do what we do, and how to change it.

Putting on someone else’s pants isn’t going to work – so often I meet clinicians who “want what she’s having”.  It isn’t going to fit for you.  Your “shape” is completely different.  Your mindset for success needs to fit you!

So if you are like I was, and grappling with “why am I not successful yet” then this is an invitation for you to learn about you.  Learn about what is driving you, what is helping you and what parts of your personality are not helping you. Learn about why you’re wired the way you are and what we can do to make that wiring work for your GOOD.

Be assured that this isn’t doom and gloom, there is nothing wrong with you.  You can’t pretend to have a mindset for success – you must build one!

Understanding YOU is the first module of the Success Mindset Masterclass happening September 14-17 2017 (early bird seats are now on sale, and you can save $300 on the price of your seat).  Next week, I’m going to talk to the fabulous Sherry Shockey Pope of Therapist Practice in a Box, where she will share her insights about what the barriers she’s faced in running a Multi-therapist practice, and how the Success Mindset Masterclass helped her get unstuck.

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