Wait, wut? Don’t waste time or energy on a New Year’s resolution? But… But… But, every coach on the planet says I have to or my business will fail!
Does this sound like you? Yeah, you’re not alone (believe it). You’re also not alone if you’ve made resolutions every year for decades and rarely (if ever) followed through on them.
As mentioned in a previous post, and depending on whom you believe, something like 80% to 90% of resolutions go bust within the first month or two of every year so, why keep doing the same old thing and expecting a different result? (We all know what Einstein said about that, right? Coo-Coo for Cocoa Puffs!)
Why does this happen so consistently? Well, stated simply, it’s because you’re human: life and work get in the way while enthusiasm fades. Other priorities kick in. Old habits persist and are hard to change. Limiting beliefs hold you back. It’s hard to let go of last year and focus on this year. You always aim too high and fall short. The list is almost as long as the number of people who make resolutions each year.
So, what to do? What to do?
Change Your Mindset to Change Your Life
Making changes is NOT easy. Truly, old habits die hard and familiar ways of thinking (and feeling) become like that worn out but comfy old sweater you can’t throw away. Yet, it’s also true that sometimes what’s familiar doesn’t work – and that’s when changes need to be made.
(BTW… Though this is a business blog, these lessons apply to both your personal and business lives.)
In practical terms, change is stressful and can be frustrating. Failing to reach goals is discouraging and the resulting negative expectations leads to self-fulfilling lack of faith in yourself. All of this can lead to a persistent, negative mindset that virtually guarantees your goals will not be realized.
“The unfortunate truth is that change, all change, entails some degree of emotional friction, which in turn generates a ‘heated state’ we call stress. Whether you’re feeling anxious, depressed, frustrated, fatigued, weak and out of control, or simply bored, emotional friction (stress) becomes the high-octane fuel of failure. When it comes to handling the stress involved in change, many well-adjusted, happy, overweight, out-of-shape people share the fundamental problem of self-sabotage.” (USNews.com)
So, unless you change your mind first, you can’t expect change to follow.
Power of Positivity & Successful Goal Setting
Having shared a goal setting strategy previously, it’s time to talk about mindset; the way you see the world and your place in it.
Professor Carol Dweck at Stanford University has found that, when it comes to achieving success, more important than believing in our abilities is the belief that we can improve upon our abilities. While much has been written about how these beliefs shape our individual success and wellbeing, her latest research suggests that these beliefs also exist within our organizations, and shape our ability to create innovative, risk-taking cultures and have happier employees.
Research done at Harvard has shown that, if you train yourself to see stressful situations as challenges rather than barricades, a situation to overcome rather than an impossible barrier, you are far more likely to experience “good” stress rather than “bad” stress in that situation. Doing this then leads to the release of the “feel good” enzyme dopamine which leads to a more positive mindset.
Further, as presented by researcher and psychologist Shawn Achor in his entertaining Ted Talk, there is also ample research that shows a positive mindset affects every aspect of life, including work. Positive people are happy people and happy people are successful people – not the other way around.
As he explains, and as the latest research into the structure and function of the mind suggests, success does NOT lead to happiness; happiness leads to success!
In other words, mindset is the key to success in life and business because a positive mindset leads to:
- 23% Reduction in stress
- 39% Better health
- 31% Increase in productivity
- 34% Increase in positive social interaction (relationships)
- 37% Increase in intelligence
“Huh?” Yes, take a look at that last one again. A positive mindset will not only reduce stress, improve your health, make you more productive, and improve your relationships – being positive will also make you smarter!
While there is plenty more to be shared on the relationship of mindset to successful New Year’s resolutions and goal setting, we’ve pretty much hit the limit for a blog post. So… stay tuned for more in future posts.
Looking for more tips on goal setting for your business, help with your online marketing strategy, or other marketing ideas? Get in touch with the YOMT Team today.