It’s the first week of February. According to statistics 75% of you have abandoned your New Year’s resolutions as of … three, two, one, now. What were they? Lose weight? Save money? Eat better? Exercise? Cut back on social media? Quit smoking?
Do you even get excited when I mention, “New Year’s Resolutions?” Probably not. Here’s why I think that is: New Year’s resolutions are almost always doing something you don’t really want to do, but think you should do. So, you reluctantly, but hopefully, set your intention, throw some willpower at it and … it rarely works.
Why do we fail? I believe the number one reason people fail at New Year’s Resolutions, and for that matter many goals (and even fall short of the person they want to be) is we try to change behavior without changing mindset. We try to change the way we act, without changing the way we think. Think about it. You can’t quit smoking if you keep thinking like a smoker. You can’t save money if you think like a spender. You can’t exercise if you keep thinking like a lazy person. You can’t be the best at your job if you continue to think like the average person at your job. You can’t grow spiritually if you continue to think like someone who’s a-spiritual. You can’t get rich if you keep thinking like a poor person.
My father is a great example; he always wanted to be rich. And he hated rich people. So, he most certainly did not want to think like a rich person. And he never got rich. Now, he tried (read: will power). He would read “get rich quick” and “shortcuts to wealth” books, purchase plans for businesses he would never launch, look for that secret insider stock tip (without even knowing anyone who had any, let alone that they never work). All the while his mindset stayed one of scarcity and would never allow him to make or maintain the behavioral changes necessary to build wealth.
So let’s do this: What change would you like to make in your life? Right now, choose one. Instead of just forcing yourself to act like you think you’re supposed to, like that change has fully happened, start by asking yourself, “How does the person I want to become, think?” Who is that person? How does a non-smoker think when the triggers for smoking hit? How does a good steward of finances think when making buying decisions, when he or she gets a paycheck? How does a person who’s not overweight think about food, weight, diet? What mindset do you need to develop to create the transformation you want?
This is where transformation is born and fleshed out: In your mindset. Companies and organizations (by the way, this is not just about personal development) are exactly the same. If, as a company, you try to transform from, say, a purely brick and mortar business model to a mostly web-based business model, but everyone continues to think like the former, you’ll end up like most New Year’s Resolutions: back to your old self. But if you can inspire a transformation mindset in your entire organization, a mindset for the new model and create daily practices which move toward that model, then you can transform.
Again, it begins with and is facilitated by your mindset, individually and collectively.
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