How often do we bring an empowering mindset to the challenges before us? It’s so easy to stay within our comfort zone and maintain our habits; both in belief and in action.
Habits are a way to simplify the complexity of what we process each day.
Remember how much concentration it took to first learn to drive a car; every aspect of the experience required focus and attention. After driving for some time, however, what was once taxing became less so; it still requires concentration, yet habits are now formed that make it easier, so much so that we often don’t realize how we got from point A to point B. That’s because we have developed driving habits; when to do what automatically, without conscious thought. Habits are useful for repetitive tasks. Yet for higher order processes, mindset habits often get in the way of breakthroughs. This is a challenge typical for leaders.
How often are we able to lead into new territory if we ourselves have become “stuck” in a habit?
Habits can prevent us from considering what truly is possible. When we explore our mindsets with objectivity through open-ended questions, opportunity can be revealed that wasn’t observable before.
As a coach, I delight in helping people explore what’s possible. When I hear “that’s impossible,” it’s an opportunity to investigate. How do we know for sure that it’s impossible? What evidence do we have that is factual? Separating the facts from the “story” is a big part of helping discover new paths of possibility.
I’m reminded of several recent client conversations in which what was perhaps considered “impossible” became “maybe that could happen.” In each of them, I observed how easy it was to ride along with our own self-constructed limits. It’s often not until we share them out loud that we truly hear ourselves. When we speak and are truly heard, the emotional opportunity to experience something beyond habit is energizing. That energy helps create possibility.
Five tips for creating possibility:
- Establish clarity around a goal; be specific.
- Assess a few key actions you can take to get there.
- What barriers stand in the way? Are they grounded in fact or are they imagined?
- Explore the belief you, or the team, currently have about the barriers.
- Create a new, empowering belief that will support new, different actions towards the goal.
The most powerful thing we have within our control is our mindset.
The challenge we have is that we are not conscious as to what makes up our mindset. It’s transparent to us and often to others who are close to us. We all say “that’s just the way it is.”
The way it was does not have to be the way it will become….
Great things come from people whose mindsets are not limited by their past experiences. Rather, they use the past as a springboard to vision something so vastly different that it may feel impossible at first. This clarity of vision and single-minded dedication to a new mindset and belief is powerful enough to make the impossible, possible.
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