“The mind is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master.” Robin S. Sharman
Every action taken can be traced back to thought and emotion. The battle begins in the mind, as they say, and it’s important to know the malleability of its contents. All self-defeating actions simply stem from memorized beliefs. In order to program your mind for success, you have to delete old programs and replace them with new ones.
Here are 5 steps to help you do this:
1. Find out what you believe
In order to get where you want to be, you have to first know where you are. Begin by writing down all the beliefs you have about your ability to be successful. The trick here is to be 100% honest. Don’t write down what you want to believe about your capabilities, write down what you ACTUALLY believe about yourself. Why are you not where you want to be? What beliefs are holding you back from success?
2. Change your negative beliefs into positive affirmations
Affirmations are powerful suggestions you give to your mind. Now that you’ve written down your beliefs about success, turn every negative statement into a positive affirmation that you actually believe. Affirmations don’t work if you don’t believe what you are saying, so make sure you find a belief that is true for you. For example:
“I don’t believe I’m smart enough to be successful.” Can be changed to: “I know I am capable of change and I love the feeling of moving forward.” It’s a subtle shift in perspective, drawing attention away from the negative and toward a more empowering thought.
Once you’ve made a list of positive affirmations to replace the negative beliefs, memorize them and say them to yourself every time a self-defeating belief pops up.
3. ‘Fake it till you make it’
Emotions and thoughts attract like experiences. What will success feel like to you? Focus on how you want to feel and write down things you already do (or know you can do) that bring on those same feelings. Whatever activity you can do NOW that makes you successful – do – as often as you can. Repetition will cause you to recognize success as something you can attain. And the more you allow yourself to feel successful, the more your experiences will reflect success.
4. Heed your emotional needs
A lot of people think if they are successful, they will be more acceptable, loved, worthy, etc. But when self-hate drives your desire for success, your attempts only re-affirm self-deprecation. And that will never work in your favor.
Breaking through self-defeating beliefs is going to bring up programs you have about your capabilities and worthiness, and these emotions must be addressed and healed if true success is to come. Tell yourself it’s OKAY to feel what you feel, but make sure to approach the negative emotions with compassion. The mind/body needs to know it can trust you – and if you put unrealistic expectations on yourself, your emotions will not cooperate. Be kind to yourself.
5. Keep Going
Re-programming the mind for success is literally rewiring your brain chemistry. And that takes time. Make a commitment to not give up. It took you a lifetime to develop and memorize the beliefs you have, so don’t be surprised if it takes some time to change them. If you find yourself thinking an old thought, don’t beat yourself up about it; drop it and immediately go back to the affirmations that feel good to think about. Just keep going. Once you release expectations of perfection, you’ll find yourself feeling successful and ready to take on anything.
Also Read: How Failure Can Be the Best Teacher