Interestingly, I was running a programme last week when someone mentioned to me that she’d been on lots of sessions like the one that I was running but nothing ever seemed to work for her. She said she always started off well but her enthusiasm dwindled and before long she’d lapsed back into her old ways, so what was the point? As we talked, I realised she was willing to try new things, however there was a pattern where she tended to set herself goals that she thought others would expect of her and then set them too high.
For us to make lasting changes, we need to have clarity on our own purpose, not someone else’s. It is a key element of having mental toughness to have the ability to create a strong vision and purpose for what we want to achieve. This then helps us with so many of our other tools, like positive self-talk, visualisation and opportunity spotting, etc. It also makes the vision draw us towards it because we ‘want to’ do it rather than ‘have to’.
James Clear quoted ‘Mental toughness is persistence not intensity’. With everything we do, we need to start off small and then continually build on the compound interest to achieve long lasting success. Nobody starts training to run a marathon by running 26 miles the first time out. We run and walk and run and walk until we build up the strength and ability over a timescale. And that’s exactly the same with everything else we tackle. If we make the first steps too big we’re much more likely to default when we hit the smallest of obstacles, rather than find a way around it. When we break tasks down in to dolly steps, on route to our bigger goals, we are able to build up our stamina by practising daily and building new strong habits to replace the old.
We also need to believe that we really can do it. Our sense of self efficacy is so important to achieve our goals. As Henry Ford once said ‘whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right’. I feel as if I’ve known this quote all my life, ingrained from a young age and now the root of the optimistic approach I take to whatever I do. I used to think it was the same for everyone, however I realise that it isn’t the case. You see we’re only ever as strong as that voice in our heads and when it’s working for us, we’re unstoppable. When we fall over, we get back up and try all over again. Yet, when the voice is doom and gloom, it can demotivate us, we can ask ourselves ‘why bother?’ and we’re much more likely to give up.
We’ve all learned so many things throughout our lives and stored them deep inside of us and it’s a fact that some will help us and some will hinder us in our achievements. Therefore, we need to continually challenge those experiences, thoughts, attitudes and habits to make sure we are achieving our potential and there’s no time like the present. During our period of lock-down we’ve witnessed and experienced some huge changes to the way we work and live. If you’re anything like me, it’s probably also made you think about how you want to live your life going forward. This will result in some things that we will need to unlearn and relearn to serve us better, which isn’t always easy … but we have some tried and tested tools that can help you.
On 16th July my colleague Judith and I are going to be running a 90 minute session on this topic. It’s called ‘Resilient Leadership: Navigating the path as a leader towards the new normal’ and we’ll be sharing some practical tools and techniques for you to use whether you feel you need to be more resilient in your professional or personal life. We say this because leadership has many guises and they’re not all in the workplace!
If this is of interest to you, or you know someone who would benefit from the session, click on this link to find out more. https://lnkd.in/d8QKMp3