I recently delivered a webinar on Procrastination for the Institute of Leadership & Management. The title of the session was ‘Stop sabotaging your success and get on with what is good for you’. In the session, I shared a number of tools and processes to help reduce and manage procrastination including; awareness, knowledge, and perspective.
The session generated a huge number of questions from the audience and a number of these questions focused on perspective and beliefs.
Are your beliefs helping or hindering you?
Our beliefs have a direct impact on how we think and act. Beliefs can be helpful to us but they can also hinder us in life. So, what better reflection for 3-2-1 today than beliefs and in this case, positive, resourceful ones!
3 Ideas – Trying on new beliefs
ONLY – There is no such thing as failure, only feedback.
FLEXIBLE – If what you do doesn’t work, be flexible, and try something different.
RESOURCES – People have all the resources they need to succeed.
2 Learnings – Adopting resourceful beliefs
The above beliefs are all NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) Presuppositions. They are not necessarily true, but they can produce useful results for us.
Beliefs are usually self-fulfilling.
‘What you think, you are.’
What we believe is what we think and, how we think impacts how we feel and in turn, how we act.
So by changing what we believe, this can have an immediate and positive impact on our emotions and behaviours.
The second belief ‘If what you do doesn’t work, be flexible, and try something different’ is a great place to start.
This is based on the Law of Requisite Variety. It states that the person with the most flexibility of behaviour will control the system. That basically means that the more choices you have, the more freedom you will feel, and the better a quality of life you can have.
This is a resourceful belief on a personal as well as an organisational level. An organisation that is flexible will respond to changes by evolving. The most flexible organization does not fight change; a flexible organization accepts change as an inevitable part of the business environment, so it learns to maximize its opportunities whenever change comes along.
Similarly, as individuals, if we are able to respond to any situation in a variety of ways, we are more likely to achieve our desired outcome.
Life is 10% what is happening to you and 90% how you react to it.
And in thinking about the outcome or goals you want to achieve, the belief that ‘People have all the resources they need to succeed’ can also be very empowering.
People have all the resources that they need to make the changes that they want or, they can create them.
There are no unresourceful people, only unresourceful states*.
Whenever we do not achieve our desired outcome, we tend to blame other people, external circumstances, our ill-luck, or even our own selves. We either fail to realize that we possess the resources to attain the achievements we aim for or we do not make efficient use of the resources.
It is for us to recognize them and access them.
Resources are both external to us and internal within us.
What resources do you have available to you?
What assumptions are you making that are limiting your resources?
What resources will you build on to achieve your desired outcome?
1 Positive Action – Embrace feedback
‘There is no such thing as failure. Only feedback exists.’
All experiences are an opportunity for reflection, learning, and growth.
Whether this is success or failure, it is always valuable to ask, what did I learn from the experience?
What went well?
What can I improve on?
What and how will I change?
What and how will I do things differently?
My own experience of embracing this belief is that I have been able to reduce or eliminate many fears that would have stopped me from taking action in life.
“Better to have tried and failed than to have never tried at all.”
And also ‘better to have tried and failed than to live a life wondering what would’ve happened if you had tried’ – Alfred Lord Tennyson
What positive action will you take?
* States in this context are emotional states of being.