Mindset 101

You are capable of doing what you believe you can do. It’s easy to say this, but to actually live this way is another thing entirely. Most people would agree I think that their mind is super powerful. Therefore it follows that their thoughts are that power in action. Mindset then would be a set way of thinking, right?

Mindset is defined by The American Heritage Dictionary as meaning, “A fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person’s responses to and interpretations of situations. An inclination or a habit. A way of thinking; an attitude or opinion, especially a habitual one.”  Other dictionaries give similar definitions, but I believe The American Heritage truly nails it when it says that it’s a mental attitude that predetermines your responses to and interpretations of situations. So, your mindset actually determines what you are going to do or think relative to any situation.  In short, it constantly guides all of your actions and thoughts.  

I think that most people don’t consider their mindset. I mean, they don’t think about it and how powerful it is or how much of an effect it has on their lives and the people around them.  One reason they don’t is more than likely that it takes great humility to be honest about what is your mindset.  Humility is difficult, especially since we all know that we’re not perfect and we should constantly be striving to become better.  It takes work and that’s what we’re going to do in this lesson. 

So mindset means just that; that your mind is set or firmly positioned.  The questions then are what is your mindset and how did it get set this way?  Can it be changed?  My father was in the Navy for 27 years.  There were certain things that the Navy drilled into him that set his mind to work towards the Navy’s way of doing things.  These were new things and really reset his mind. Officer candidate school had a profound effect on him and his mindset, but even more so was functioning as an officer in the Navy for 27 years.  Mindset is formed over time and becomes as it is defined, a habit.

I remember how he would have a very intense focus on whatever he did.  This I believe was learned.  In the Navy, the motto is, “Do it right or do it again.” He always insisted on getting things done right. No doubt he learned this from being expected to get things right repeatedly throughout his career.     

So, be considerate of what you permit into your life experience. Who you spend time with and what you spend time doing changes you little by little. For example, I guarantee you that if you decide to spend time watching the news everyday, you will become more negative about life. Why? Because for the most part the news is very negative. And I really haven’t met many truly successful people who were negative or who watched the news.

Spend your time in a way that conditions you to achieve your goals. If your goal is to run a 4-minute mile, then I wouldn’t suggest hanging out with people who eat junk food all day and constantly tell you that you’ll never run a 4-minute mile. This would seem like common sense, but it’s not. If it were common then I think we’d have a lot more people able to run a 4-minute mile. We’d have more people achieving a great number of incredible feats.

Try this out. Try for one week to immerse yourself into your craft or the market you’re pursuing. Only read books about that subject and only spend your time with positive people who genuinely support your goals and believe in you. You will see a difference in your mindset because you’ll be feeding your mind with what it needs to help you achieve your goals. Set your mind up for success by surrounding yourself with only what supports a predetermined outcome…your success.

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