The things we think and believe can have an enormous impact on our ability to succeed and achieve the goals we set for ourselves. These beliefs help make up your overall mindset. We’ve been programmed since birth to think, believe, and feel things based on our experiences, what we’ve been taught, and how we relate to the world around us.

Priorities can influence your mindset

Every few years there’s a big push for people to stop using two spaces after a period. Inevitably, the masses have strong opinions on this topic. Some believe you should just do it because it’s the right way. Others say they’ve tried and just can’t make the switch; their typing practices are too ingrained after many years of using two spaces. And then some just don’t care.

In each of these instances, there’s a mindset and it’s based on how the individual prioritizes the change. For someone like myself, who writes for the web all the time, switching to one space after a period was important to me. It was worth it to make the effort. For someone who doesn’t write web content, or who has an editor on hand to do it for them it’s not so important. But anyone can make the switch if they are so inclined and it has nothing to do with whether or not you’ve been typing for 5 or 50 years.

Your mindset can be a barrier to learning new skills

Several years ago, I worked with a sales coach to get help building an effective sales process. What came out of that experience was a realization that I had a mindset about sales that was holding me back from trying.

I didn’t like sales. In my mind, I always pictured the stereotypical used car salesman and I didn’t want to be like that guy. My coach helped me reframe my thinking to view the sales process as an opportunity to get to know what is challenging the prospect and how I could help. And looking at it this way gave me the confidence to tell people I wasn’t the right person to help them if it became clear my services wouldn’t meet their needs. By focusing on helping people meet their needs, the sales process turned into something I could enjoy with more success.

You can change your mindset (if you truly want to)

I have been saying to myself for years that sales is about helping. The result is I’ve become much more comfortable having “sales” conversations with potential clients in which I assess their needs and make recommendations. I’ve used affirmations to help me change my mindset. I repeated “I am giving valuable help when I have sales calls,” until the belief was ingrained.

What beliefs do you hold onto that you know hold you back? Do any of these phrases regularly cross your mind or lips?

  • I should
  • I need
  • I can’t
  • I must

I recently read How Women Rise by Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith. It walks through 12 habits that hold women back in their professional lives. Sure, there are external forces that have an impact, but many habits that hold us back are rooted in deeply ingrained beliefs. Knowing about them is the first step to overcoming them and that’s an empowering place to be.

Set your mind to break away from limiting beliefs

There’s incredible value to being open to change, which is easier with a growth mindset. Carol Dweck’s Mindset explores the psychology of mindset in relation to success – another excellent book that can influence your ability to achieve your goals. Start by checking yourself: The next time you say, “I can’t…,” “I should…,” “I need to…,” and other statements that are self-limiting, check yourself. Is it a valid belief? Is it low priority? Or is it a limiting belief you want to work on?

Don’t let a mindset you can change hold you back. You can change your beliefs about yourself.

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Check out our upcoming events like the Wine Down and the Mix and Mingle Breakfast. Coming up in June, we have our 23rd Annual Charity Golf Tournament in support of Healthy Women Healthy Community. We hope to see you out on the course with us!

Karen C. Wilson, WBN President
WBN President, 2015-18
Chief Marketing Strategist and Storyteller
Karen C. Wilson Communications