Success only comes with hard work, but the way you think is also a major factor.
If you are struggling to focus, to feel confident, or want to overcome procrastination, you may want to try a few techniques to re-programme your mind.
Specifically, you need to focus on training your subconscious – the part of your mind that operates below your level of awareness.
It is responsible for your habitual beliefs and patterns. Some researchers believe that these patterns govern 95% of our thoughts and feelings.
If you want to programme your mind to help you reach a goal, you must be specific.
Trying to meet a subjective, fuzzy goal such as “Be successful” or “Be rich” will not work.
Instead, hone in on measurable goals and write them down. For instance, you could set a goal to “Get a promotion within the next three months” or “Make X amount of money in X number of years.”
Set SMART goals – goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound.
Write goals from a place of positivity – avoid words like “Don’t”, “Avoid” or “Stop”. Instead, focus on the things you do want in your life.
Affirm your goals every day. Rewrite or type them manually every morning, rewrite them in a personal development journal, or simply review a prewritten list.
If possible, visualise your preferred outcome in detail. Imagine how you will feel when you reach your goals.
Once you have your goals, you can turn them into affirmations.
When repeated on a regular basis, your subconscious mind will begin working to turn them into reality.
To turn a goal into an affirmation, simply use “I” at the beginning and put in the present tense.
For example, “I am getting a promotion in the next three months” or “I am writing my first novel”.
Affirmations should be short, positive, believable and simple. Repeat them as often as possible.
If you suffer from low self-esteem, you can also use more generic affirmations. Write an “I am” list. For example, “I am smart, I am worthy, I am strong” – and review it often.
Your mind and brain respond to repetition.
By visualising what you want to happen, you will literally rewire the pathways in your brain, which will reflect in your thoughts and behaviours. Psychologists use the term “neuroplasticity” to describe this rewiring.
Your subconscious mind is constantly receiving new information, and it responds to both external and internal input.
Therefore, it is in your best interests to pay close attention to what you say and how you think. As the saying goes, “You become what you believe”.
Meditation is a powerful technique if you seek success, because it helps you step back and detach yourself from negative, unhelpful thoughts and feelings that would otherwise be detrimental to your success.
Begin by meditating for five minutes every morning, building up to five minutes morning and night.
All you need to do is sit quietly and allow your thoughts and feelings to just come and go.
With practice, you will not only improve your focus, but you will also be able to tolerate negative emotions.
This will improve your resilience, thereby setting you up for success.
You may also want to look into mindfulness exercises, which encourage you to live in the present rather than worrying about the past or future.
Get into the habit of seeing the positive side of every situation. This will be hard at first, but when it becomes an automatic habit you will see opportunities everywhere, both in your professional and personal life.
Take a few moments every day to think about all the good things in your life.
Appreciate the small stuff. Let yourself feel grateful for your first coffee of the day, the fact that you have the ability to learn new things, and so on.
Finally, you must build a healthy attitude towards failure.
Lots of people become discouraged when their plans don’t work out, or if meeting a goal proves harder than they expect.
You must learn to view failure as an inevitability and a powerful teacher that can set you on the right course for the future.
Every time you meet with a setback, be thankful! At the very least, you know what to avoid doing in the future.