Mindset can be a cage or a platform.
A cage in that it constrains you, by holding you prisoner to old ways of thinking that do not serve you.
Or a platform that lifts you up to be all of whom you are.
Mindset is the new scientific term for your subconscious mind, but it doesn’t matter what you call it, it’s how you use it.
Or whether you let it use and abuse you.
What do I mean by mindset?
Everything you think about everything is a mindset. From the political party you support to whether you like sports.
You mindset affects your life in so many ways that you wouldn’t think possible from whether you like cold frosty mornings to how much money you make. Whether you like clowns or experience depression. Whether you like a drink or eat for comfort.
All those things that you think are randomly you, they are part of your mindset and they come from instilled beliefs, judgements, learning and experience.
If you grew up in a household that always read right leaning newspapers and thought only of voting conservative, the likelihood is that you thought similar until you started introducing new ideas, new concepts about the world into your mind.
You may have experienced a cognitive dissonance when your newly learned material conflicted with the ingrained mindset and you make a choice to reject the old and accept the new or stick with the old way of thinking and close your mind to any other possibilities.
Being wrong? Not a chance. We don’t let those thoughts in.
And yet, when we let in new thoughts, when we open ourselves up to new ideas, when we reject the cage and climb up on an ever expanding platform of possibility and potential, the whole world opens up to us.
We can change everything about who we are.
We can shift our identity.
Things that we used to hate about ourselves, that we accepted because ‘that’s just who we are.’ We change them, we delete them, we replace with thoughts, characteristics, identity that we love, that we want to embody and express in our lives.
And it starts so easily. It starts with a thought. A what if…maybe that…could that be…for me?
Crack open the door to the cage. Allow yourself to feel the fresh air of possibility and freedom.
Where did the cage come from? Where did you come from?
Your parents, your society, your culture. Mostly learned as a child up to aged 7.
Everything you learned then reinforced in adult life because you can only see what you believe.
So you see the world you believe in, you experience life as you expect it to be.
Did you grow up with parents who told you that you could be anything you wanted to be, that life would always work out for you, that things would fall into place?
Then you are one of the fabulous gilded few who walk through life with the lightest of touches, everything falling perfectly into place, believing as you do, of course it must.
But most of us didn’t have that childhood experience. Many of us faced hardship, uncertainty, and worse. Our parents were wounded people who couldn’t cope with our natural childhood need for attention, love, certainty and approval.
Instead we received criticism, discipline, verbal, emotional, physical, sexual abuse.
And so that’s what we looked for in the world and we found it because we expected it. Its all we could see because nothing else was allowed for in our minds, we hadn’t experienced anything else.
Told you’re not good enough often enough and you believe it and then you see it everywhere: in your relationships, at work, in everything you try to do.
And so we create coping strategies, things that allow us to pretend we’re okay.
I’ll be good enough when I work really hard and succeed. So you work really hard and succeed and you hide the awful feeling of being an impostor, because look here you are doing all you can to be good enough. But you still don’t feel it. It doesn’t change how you think at the deepest level of your being. You’re still inside the cage of your mindset.
Grew up in a house where money was always a struggle, there was never enough, money doesn’t grow on trees you know!
What’s your relationship with money like now? Same as your parents back then? Always a struggle, never enough, haven’t found a money tree to collect from regularly?
Your life is all about your mindset.
Because your life is created by your mindset.
Change how you think and you change your life.
Sounds so simple, but why does it have to be complicated?
Not easy, perhaps. But simple, absolutely.
What can you change?
Well, what do you want to change first? Because You Can Change EVERYTHING!
I always start with what you want. What do you want out of life?
To be rich? To be at peace? To live a live that matters? To feel free? To fully express your creativity? To love well and be loved in return? To enjoy every day that you are given on this planet? To create a bigger impact with your work?
To simply like who you are, all of you, even the parts you were once told were too much, or not enough?
Start with what you want.
And if you don’t know what you want. Think about what you don’t want. Which is probably what you think about most right now, right?
Being broke, being fed up, being stressed and unhappy, feeling cornered, feeling unlovable and unloved, feeling like your life doesn’t matter, like you don’t matter.
Turn that around. What’s the opposite of what you don’t want?
Then start thinking about that. And maybe you can’t get from depression, grief, despair and unhappiness to joy, and light and freedom but you could start thinking about relief from the grimness. Even just relief would feel amazing after a lifetime of those thoughts.
Lets take a simple example. You want to be slim, feel fitter, be healthier but every day you still eat the same crap foods, spend your evenings on the sofa watching tv and nothing changes.
What if you start thinking constantly about healthy food, crowding out the thoughts of rubbish junk food in your head. Just thinking about decent food will help you to act differently over time. You’ll start to eat differently, you’ll shop differently, you won’t want the old stuff that made you sick because you’re always thinking about wholesome, healthy, tasty food.
And if you add thoughts about putting on sports shoes and opening the door and just thinking about going for a walk round the block. Every time you think about it you create an opening, the possibility of you following through and doing so becomes stronger and stronger.
“As a man thinketh in his heart so is he.” James Allen
This has been knowledge that people have always known, only a few have made it work for them.
How you think is how you live. Change how you think and you change your life.
In essence, right now, you walking around in a trance, hypnotised by your current thoughts and beliefs, your current mindset, the cage in which you live.
You might think you have the illusion of choice but you very rarely ever even see possibilities for other ways to show up other than those you are grew up with.
Your job, if you want to live being all you can be, is to pull yourself out of that everyday hypnotic trance and into conscious awareness of the world. Look around you, see, touch, hear, feel, experience more than the limited current limits of your caged mind.
How do you do that?
Again, start by thinking about what you want. Not what you don’t want, what you do want and allow the possibilities of it being even bigger, better, brighter than your imagination can conceive of.
Be open. Start reading new books, finding pictures, photos, tv shows, that inspire you. Find people who are living the way you want to live, doing the work you want to do and find a way to learn from them, work with them, buy their programmes, join their mentorship or mastermind events.
Open your mind. The rest will follow.
Instead of reading the same newspapers, listening to the same sources of information, the same people around you, diversify!
Push yourself past the uncomfortableness you’ll feel as you challenge your old ways of thinking.
Read, learn, listen, grow.
Embrace the new.
Make the familiar unfamiliar and the unfamiliar familiar.
Turn things on their head. Inside out, upside down.
What if 2+2 did not equal 4?
What if you could do that amazing thing, be that fabulous person, have that outrageous career?
Because a thought in your head said so?
Go back and think again.
And this time, think ‘Yes I can.’
That’s all it takes, allowing for the possibility and thinking about it all the time.
Complete focus and attention. Yes I can.
Align with intention, take the suggested action and suddenly, yes, you are, you are doing it, having it, being the person you always knew you were deep inside.
Persistence, perseverance are necessary allies in the desire to create change in your life.
They become part of your new mindset too.
You become a person who persists, a person who perseveres.
Because that’s how you think, and as you think, so you are.
Believe you can change, believe its possible, believe that best version of you is ready to show up now.
And allow it to come from you.
Stop hiding your best because you don’t think you can be any different.
We know you can. I know it and you, you can feel it.
Because we should all grow believing in ourselves, believing in the wonder and glory of our being just who we are and that is always enough.
And if you didn’t get that when you were little, give it to yourself now.
Self Love, Self Compassion, Self Belief.
You are everything, you always were. You have all you need within, you always did.
Give yourself permission to be you. All of you, as you were born to be.
I can’t wait to see you.
PS. Its almost here, my Winter WonderMind programme designed to banish the winter blues so you regain six months of the year that you might usually spend moping, miserable or feeling genuinely depressed. It doesn’t have to be like that. I promise.