Today’s blog has been written by Nikki Fischr – Admin Manager and Personal Trainer here at Unique Results.
My blog is about MINDSET and ties in nicely with our January and February blogs on Goal Setting and Motivation.
So what is MINDSET?
The dictionary definition is – the established set of attitudes held by someone.
There are two main types of mindset – FIXED and GROWTH
Most people have a FIXED mindset and these people believe they are or aren’t good at something, based on their inherent nature, because it’s just who you are.
However, those people in a GROWTH mindset believe anyone can be good at anything, because your abilities are entirely due to your actions.
Here are some examples. Which one are you?…….
You want to hide your flaws so you’re not judged or labeled a failure
You stick with what you know to keep up your confidence
You look inside yourself to find your true passion and purpose, as if this is a hidden inherent thing.
Failures define you.
You believe if you’re romantically compatible with someone, you should share all of each other’s views, and everything should just come naturally.
It’s all about the outcome. If you fail, you think all effort was wasted
Your flaws are just a TO-DO list of things to improve
You keep up your confidence by always pushing into the unfamiliar, to make sure you’re always learning.
You commit to mastering valuable skills regardless of mood, knowing passion and purpose come from doing great work, which comes from expertise and experience
Failures are temporary setback
You believe a lasting relationship comes from effort and working through inevitable differences
It’s all about the process, so the outcome hardly matters.
“Can we change our Mindset?” I hear you ask. Yes we can.
How do we do it?
Here are a few steps that will help you work towards changing your mindset from FIXED to GROWTH.
Set yourself a GOAL – Think about your life, your health, your fitness and find 1 or 2 things you really want to change or achieve and write them down. If you are unsure how to do this take a look at January’s blog. It explains all about goals and how to write them.
Look at your habits – Habits are our brains way of making life easy for us. Breathing is a habit, your morning routine (brush teeth, shower, breakfast etc) is a habit, driving the same way to work/school is a habit. Habits keep us safe, however our brains can not tell the difference between good and bad habits.
Bad habits are having a cigarette with your first coffee of the day, having that glass of wine once the children are in bed, dunking your favourite biscuits in your afternoon cup of tea or coffee.
Over a period of a couple of days write down all the habits you perform. Review them and consider the impact they have on your life and specifically your goal(s). For those that will hinder you reaching you goals or living your life how you want, think about what triggers the habit. For example – when I have my mid morning break I always have 4 biscuits with my hot drink.
Once you have identified all the triggers for your habits, the next step is to choose just one, that if broken, would make the biggest difference to your life and ability to reach your goal.
Then start work on breaking that habit.
This could be replacing unhealthy foods with better options, avoiding situations that make you susceptible to making the wrong choices and maybe adding an activity or hobby to your day to keep you busy and fulfilled.
BELIEFS & SELF TALK
What do you believe in?
Now I’m not asking from a religious perspective, but about yourself?
When you were writing down your goals and habits to change, what was your head saying? Was the voice (self talk) positive or negative?
Did you truly believe you could achieve the goal / change the habit?
The answers to these questions will mainly stem from previous experiences and what you have been told by others. Maybe you have failed to lose weight before, or been told you couldn’t deadlift 100kgs. These experiences and comments stay with us forever, even though we brush them off or mark them down as failures.
You need to start believing in yourself – if your goals and good habits are realistic, with the right support, tools and belief you WILL achieve the goal.
Creating positive self talk is so important. We can so easily talk ourselves out of doing anything, so change the way you speak, internally and verbally.
- Change I CAN’T to I CAN / I WILL TRY
- Don’t punish yourself when you face a setback. Say to yourself “Ok that has just happened and it’s now in the past, I will now focus on the next hour/day/week”. By doing this, you are telling yourself that it’s not a catastrophe and that you will overcome this inconvenience.
- Avoid external negative influences. Identify external negative factors that could influence your thoughts. This could be unsupportive friends or family. If you are not careful you could start adopting their negativity so limit your exposure to them. Instead, surround yourself with encouraging, positive and supporting people who lift you up and help you towards your goal.
- Build your self esteem. Make an effort to praise yourself every day. Maybe you have had a great session at the gym, a productive day at work or you have stuck to your healthy eating regime for the day. Pat yourself on the back!! Write it down in a journal or diary. Writing down on paper a positive thought or achievement has a huge impact on your beliefs, much more than it just being a passing thought.
- This leads nicely onto positive affirmations and journalling. Affirmations are positive statements related to a desired goal. By repeating them out loud to yourself over and over again, you are making your subconscious mind believe them. Make a daily ritual of repeating these affirmations, and you will begin to think and feel differently.
- Try journalling. It doesn’t have to be a “Dear Diary” type of thing. Just try every day to write down something positive that has happened. Or if you have more time try answering some questions like the ones below that will really get you thinking and appreciating yourself and those that are part of your life.
I’m most proud of……..
What do I love about myself?
Who means the world to me and why?
What makes me come alive and when did I last truly feel it?
What are my strengths?
If you find you enjoy journalling there are many more examples online, just search ‘Journalling Questions’.
What is willpower?
The dictionary definition is – ‘the ability to control ones impulses and actions. Self control’
From a goal / health and fitness perspective will power or self control is key. If you want to get fitter then you need the willpower to train regularly. If you want to loose weight then you need the willpower to refuse the cakes and sweets when offered. If you want to be healthier then you need the willpower to pick up a bottle of water rather than a bottle of fizzy pop.
The amount of willpower we have is limited and throughout a day dealing with challenges at work, with family etc our willpower is zapped away. So how can we improve our willpower. Here are a few tips:
- Learn how to manage stress – Being under high levels of stress means that our body’s energy is used up in acting instinctively and making decisions based on short-term outcomes. When feeling overwhelmed or tempted by a bad choice – STOP. Take a few deep breaths and walk away from the situation or temptation. Ask yourself is it really what you want/ need.
- Stick to your plan – Having a plan to follow, whether it be an eating plan or training plan, will keep you focused. You’ll know exactly what you need to eat or what exercises you need to complete. There will be no temptations to deviate and drain your willpower as it is in the plan.
- Get plenty of sleep – ensure you get plenty of sleep so your brain can manage energy better. Being over tired zaps your willpower and will leave you open to making the wrong choices.
- Avoid temptation – this takes us back to creating habits. If, like Oscar Wilde, you ‘can resist anything except temptation’, the best tactic is to stay away from it. If you love sticky buns, avoid the bakery. If you crave cigarettes with a drink, cut out pub visits until you’ve beaten the habit.
I hope these few tips will help you move your Mindset from FIXED to GROWTH and you smash the goals you have.
Remember though take one step at a time. Bombarding yourself with a number of things you want to achieve will only result in failure. Pick one goal and one habit and work on them until the target is reached. Then move on to the next. Doing too much at once will just create extra pressure and stress which your mind does not need.
Yours in health