Chronicling the steps to creating a SUCCESSFUL life.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Do You Fall Into This Trap? Comparing Yourself to Other People?

If you are human, you have done it. You compare yourself to other people. The good news is that people out there compare themselves to you and the not-so-good news is that you do it, as well. While neither is benefit of the other, it is simply part of human nature. It’s how we grow, it’s how we strive, but sometimes, unfortunately, it’s sometimes an excuse to give up, as well.

A Fixed Mindset

If we don’t have something to compare ourselves to, you might reason, then how will we learn to achieve and grow? Sometimes, when we compare ourselves to others, we have something to gauge our success and failure with and, therefore, a measure of where we can do better and achieve more.

However, unfortunately, for those with a fixed mindset, this does not occur at all. There is actually a reverse method of thinking. That reverse method tells us, since we are not as good as the other person, we might as well just quit. That doesn’t work in the world of intelligence, however. It is ineffective, at best.

Do you ever find yourself viewing someone else’s success as only a way to make yourself look bad? If so, you are not alone in this thought process. For some, the success of others equates to highlight their own failures. Excuses are made such as the other party being luckier or having it easy. Another excuse is to say everything just comes easily to that person or, even worse, use their success to highlight some other unrelated shortcoming. What if you could re-train your brain to adopt a mindset of growth?

Growth Mindset

On the opposite end of the spectrum is a growth mindset. You can give yourself the opportunity to change and grow over time as you learn to re-train your brain to a growth mindset. When you view someone else’s success as a way to strive harder, do more, and work harder, you re-train your brain to view this not as an excuse to stay status quo, but as a reason to thrive.

If you choose the thought patterns that intelligence can be developed and you can most certainly train your brain to reach higher heights, you will see a radical change in your life. Once you get that your self-image has nothing to do with failing at something and that this failure is actually a path to higher learning, you will be at ease in your own skin.

Wouldn’t that be nice to be at ease in your own skin? If you change your mind, you can re-train your brain to view failure as a stepping-stone to new successes. You will begin to understand failure as a learning tool and not as a way to define your image. 

So, the next time you want to compare yourself to someone else, stop and ask yourself if his/her success can highlight inspiration for you. Maybe he/she put a tremendous amount of effort into the realization of dreams and all that hard work paid off. This could be a learning tool for you rather than something viewed as an enemy. 

Other people’s success could be a way and a means for you to learn, grow, and, most importantly, be inspired.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Communication and Changing Your Mindset

Older theories about intelligence dictate to us that we are born a “certain way.” We have certain traits that others do not possess, others have certain traits that we do not possess, and that is that. There is no room for growth or expansion. Our intelligence is as it always was and there is no room for improvement.

However, today, we know better. We know that we have the ability to change our mindset and, therefore, improve our capacity for learning in leaps and bounds. No longer is the status quo necessary. We can grow and strive to achieve more academically and, therefore, in life.

Choose Your Words Carefully

Each one of us go through our days speaking our mind, saying things without giving it much thought and sometimes even holding things in and not speaking up for ourselves only to berate ourselves later on for doing so. If you take a moment to recognize and record the words you use daily, you may come to realize that the words you choose might directly relate to the mindset you have.

What is a Mindset?

A mindset is the mental attitude you adopt which dictates how you will or will not perceive, react and respond to situations. Why is it important? Your mindset can and will determine your life from academics to career and beyond.

Why is it Important to Communicate Effectively?

The way you interpret your situation communicates to your brain. When it comes to intelligence, you may have a long-standing belief that you are either one way or another. For example, you may feel that you are average and are not questioning that old, limiting, and long-standing belief. It is important to communicate effectively by choosing the thoughts that will change the outcome.

For example, there have been many firsts in your life. You had to allow your first child get on the bus to go to kindergarten without you there. The next child it was a little easier and by the third child, if you had one, this task was not as big of a deal as the first time you had to face it.

By communicating to yourself that you can and will get through the many things that life sends your way, you are able to meet and face more and more challenges along the way. More importantly, you get to do it with ease and grace; as long as you communicate to yourself that, you can and are able to do so.

Communication is so much more than the words you speak to yourself; it’s also the thoughts you think. When you challenge yourself and achieve, you reset the communication bar. You allow yourself to see that not only can you achieve more by learning new things and taking on more challenges, but you also get to see that you can take on a growth mindset instead of a limiting one.