leadership, professional development

How to change your mindset

Eve Ash /

Can your mindset hold you back in your organisations and teams? Yes, easily… when you fall into the trap of thinking and being stuck.

Being stuck is …

Being a victim often leads to poor performance and poor relationships at work.

Here are typical examples of your mindset thinking patterns when you feel bogged:

• “Things will never change”
• “Leadership won’t do anything”
• “I feel overwhelmed”
• “No-one cares”
• “I’m perceived as just creating problems”
• “No-one will buy in”
• “Why do all the problems come to me?”
• “We’ve never done it that way”
• “We did it before and it didn’t work”
• “I talk and no-one listens”
• “No-one cares around here”
• “My manager doesn’t respect my ideas”
• “It’s not my job”

You’ll have grumbled at least one of the above to yourself in a repetitive, “I told you so” fashion. Maybe your job (or lack of one), or just trying to stay afloat or failing to get ahead is causing you to feel stagnant and a tad desperate. Have you reached a point where your daily existence seems painted in at least fifty shades of blahhhh? 

This is when it’s time to harness your inner power that has got lost along the way. Find that feisty energy and “have a go” attitude that you have had before. Unlock yourself!

Case A

A colleague treats you with an infuriating mix of insecurity and condescension. You are now having a bad day because this person barely deigns to reply to your emails. 

Case B

You feel targeted by some unpleasant, petty rival. 

Case C

You share an open plan office with a bureaucratic individual who’s a real life equivalent of that infamous Little Britain “computer says no” caricature. 

The beauty of such experiences is that they do not control you. You can choose your reaction. You don’t have to wear a sneer and send angry texts whining to a friend.  You can visualise yourself this way, if you must, but don’t act on it. Hold a cheerful mental finger to whatever’s causing you grief, and kick-start a positive chain-reaction that produces the necessary change. 

Smile at your own power and inner strength

Be creative with your mindset, especially in face of bad triggers:

1. “Let me try something new today – ignore bad behaviours and naysayers, and demonstrate my own supremely professional behaviour.”
2. “Say hello to someone I never speak with … find out something interesting.”
3. “Help someone with a surprising offer of time or support.”
4. “Every day I have an opportunity to be awesome – I will make my day count.”
5. “
I will solve this!  By resolving an issue, I will create a morale booster that will last me several hours.”
6. “
I can manage my work even though it’s hard-going.”
7. “
I am tackling that too-hard task with a burst of extra energy at the beginning – to enjoy how manageable the task then becomes.”
8. “I’ve got integrity – I’m proud of my actions.”
9. “
I’ve got plenty to offer, no matter what others think.”
10. “
I will treat others how I want to be treated – it’s always the right thing to do.”
11. “
I will develop a thicker skin for those harsh comments. I won’t let people get to me. It will get easier all the time.”
12. “
Bring on my True GRIT – I’ve got persistence, focus and tenacity!”
13. “
I will gain my reputation with time, care and consistency.”
14. “
I will keep going – and through this I will find the direction best suited to me.”
15. “
I can build confidence – I will tackle challenges and then pat myself on the back for having a go.”
16. “
When it all feels overwhelming, I can work through one step at a time (being methodical can be very soothing when I’m confronted by a stressful problem).”
17. “
I will ask for help — not everyone is rude and curt.”
18. “
I will look for common ground — it’s easier after I’ve made the first move.”
19. “
I can breathe out the bad feelings, I can slow down and create a strong focus.”
20. “
When I feel like exploding — I will take a walk and add to my daily steps!”

Customise the above in ways that work for you. Consider it your most important DIY project. Shake up a stagnant, oppressive situation through switching your mental patterns into positive energy. Mentally push over whatever’s upsetting or frustrating you, mentally fly over it with creative wings. Think yourself up!

Be what you want to be – unqiue, fresh, special, caring and calm. Things eventually settle and mellow once more — it’s up to you to bring it on sooner rather than later.

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Eve Ash

Eve Ash is a psychologist, author, filmmaker, public speaker and entrepreneur. She runs Seven Dimensions, a company specialising in training resources for the workplace.

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