Tuesday 29 September 2020

Your achievements are limited by your mindset

Liesl Verity (right) finished in second place at IWF's 2006 World Championships.
Have you ever wondered why some people seem to achieve success despite their backgrounds e.g. Oprah Winfrey, Nelson Mandela, Siya Kolisi? The answer is… their mindset. They refused to be limited by the beliefs of the people around them. They focused on their dreams.

Your mindset is unique to you and is made up by your values, beliefs and attitudes. No one else can ever think exactly like you do; or experience the world exactly the same way as you do. What you think becomes your behaviour and your reality. If you focus on what you don’t want, you will inevitably get exactly what you didn’t want.

In an effort to achieve our goals, all of us use various different strategies every day. These strategies are a sequence of thoughts and actions that we consistently apply. We learn these strategies when we are children and continue to apply these. The outcomes we achieve help shape our mindset and will often reinforce our beliefs and attitudes. These strategies can be negative and limiting or it can be positive and expansive.

These strategies become ‘automatic’. Most of the time we are not consciously aware of the strategies that we use. Once we become aware of these strategies, we can change them. 

If your strategy doesn’t lead to the outcome you want, you need to change your strategy.

How can you change your strategy?

Follow this simple 4-step plan to change your strategies.

  1. Focus on what you want to achieve. Visualise it. Feel what it feels like when you have achieved it. Then answer the following questions:

  • How do you need to BE to achieve your goals? 

  • What do you need to THINK and BELIEVE about yourself?

To answer the above questions, you may want to look at a couple of people who already achieved what you hope to achieve and see what attributes they display. What values and beliefs helped them achieve their goals.

For each of these attributes you identify, draw a line numbered from 1 to 10 and place this attribute at 10.

  1. Do a gap analysis on yourself. For each of the attributes you identified in step 1, look at where you are at today and draw a circle on the line at the appropriate number. Add the date to keep a record as to where you are at today.

  1. Choose 1 of those areas and consider what steps you need to take to move from where you are today (e.g. at level 6) to where you want to be (level 10). Use these steps and develop a step-by-step plan with measurable goals. Remember to set target dates for each step. 

I recommend you start with an area that will provide quick results. This will help build your confidence and motivate you to follow through with the other areas identified in your gap analysis.

  1. Implement your action plan for your chosen area for development. Look for feedback and adjust your action plan if you are not moving towards your goal. Continue with this feedback loop until you reached your goal. 

Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you worked through all the areas of improvement identified in step 2.

It is a good idea to repeat steps 1 and 2 periodically to confirm you are still focusing on the attributes that will bring you closer to your ultimate goal.

If you want to achieve excellence, you must use the strategy that leads to excellence. 



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Liesl Verity

INGWE Coaching

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