7 Mindsets of Success

WHAT YOU REALLY NEED TO DO TO ACHIEVE RAPID, TOP-LEVEL SUCCESS 

Mindset 1 Future Self :

To simply want success is not going to help you achieve it. You need to stop and imagine who you want to be personally and professionally in five years. Then, you need to figure out how to get there.

The Future Self Mindset is the secret to getting refocused, to figuring out what you need to be doing right now to achieve your goals, and to get the motivation to actually go do it . 

You’ve tried to increase your sales. You’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing. But you keep asking yourself, “Why aren’t I experiencing the results?” You might even be growing tired of the whole mundane process: the tasks, phone calls, and emails you have to send to make even one sale. It’s easy to feel aimless in the midst of your daily to-do list. 

Eventually, you’ll feel tempted to stop doing those meaningless tasks, and you’ll lose sight of where you were headed. You’ll start waking up wondering why you go to work each day. I’ve been in this business long enough that I’ve watched this happen again and again. 

1. What am I doing well? 

“What am I doing well? What am I doing now that is bringing me closer to my goal?” 

Evaluate your last few months of work, and pick out the things you are doing that are bringing you closer to your goals. Allow yourself to acknowledge your strengths so you can focus more deeply on them. 

When I asked myself this question, I found that there were a lot of things I was doing really well that I wasn’t giving enough time to. 

3. What should I do next? 

For me, this looked like being able to take tests and get certifications. I was able to make decisions that build upon each other by evaluating what next steps were needed in my process. The plan looks different for everyone, but it is important to determine what comes next. 

Look at the diagram above. Take a minute to create your own Future Self Plan. Draw a line on a blank piece of paper. On the left side write your name and present year. This is your current self. On the far right side, put your name and the year you are imagining your future self. This could be five, ten, or twen- ty years in the future. Now evaluate the steps that will get you closer to the other side. 

This Mindset Will Change Your Life 

Your future self is not only who you want to be professionally, but personally as well. I use this exercise with my family and have seen others use it in dif- ferent sports and hobbies as well. When I started to picture my future self as a father, I saw myself taking more intentional steps to become that person. My friends who use this to improve their sports performance tell me the same thing. They identify where they want to be and what they need to do to get there. 

To imagine your future self is a basic reflection exercise. It is the practice of stopping to evaluate what happened and how to do it better next time. When you picture where you want to be, you are better equipped to become that per- son. 

Each of us have different views of success, and therefore, need to tailor our future self to those views. You might define your success by how much money you make. Or what your relationship with your spouse, your children, or your friends looks like. 

Mindset 2 Remove Your Safety Net :

he fastest way to success is through risk so high that achieving your goal be- comes your only option and failure would result in total loss. 

There are a lot of good things in your life that keep you safe. When you were young, your parents kept you safe by providing for your physical needs. Your house keeps you safe from rain and cold. Your job keeps you safe from poverty and starvation

However, some of these do more than keep you safe. They can also hold you back. 

Success is always achieved through risk, and Rapid, Top Level Success is achieved through even more risk. 

This is how you accomplish more than you ever imagined: you let go of everything that has been holding you back. 

ow can you realize your true potential unless you’ve abandoned your safe- ty nets? Often, you don’t realize what’s holding you back until it’s too late. 

What is a Safety Net? 

A safety net is something that provides a margin of security or protection. We think we need them to keep us safe when in reality they are the very things holding us back. For Steve, it was the money he received from his parents. For Tim, it was the pension from the NFL. When I first got out of college my safety net was my comfortable job at an investment firm. 

In 2011, I ventured to start my own practice and in doing so, removed my safety net. At that point, I was an Oregon boy living in Nashville with no clients, very few connections, and very little savings left. This was the biggest challenge of my life thus far. I would find myself putting on my suit and driving to my office with no idea what to do next. The only thing I did know for sure was that failure was not an option. I did not have any family to help me finan- cially and I was no longer part of a successful firm. There was no safety net. 

Mindset 3 Perspective :

Imagine you’re driving through an unfamiliar city. You’re headed to an impor- tant business dinner on the other side of the city. You have a general idea of where you need to go, but your GPS isn’t working and keeps telling you that your car is in the nearby creek. You take a left out of your hotel, hoping to find a road sign, but the road is under construction and closed. You turn right down a one-way street and realize you’re going the wrong “one-way.” Quickly, you turn onto the first street you find and see a gas station in the distance. You decide to stop for directions. 

You begin to ask the man at the register who starts telling you to head east, then northwest, and then left. You nod politely, but don’t have a compass, so you’re feeling pretty hopeless. 

Suddenly a man who has been standing nearby speaks up, “Excuse me, I overheard your dilemma. I’m actually headed that way if you want to follow me.” 

Perspective from Mentors 

As I have helped others achieve success, I have discovered that getting per- spective from others is often the missing step between where you are now and where you want to be. While it might be difficult to admit it, you currently lack the knowledge to take the next steps towards your future self. What good is having a picture of who you want to be without the directions to get there? 

In the 1600s, when a young person wanted to learn a trade, he submitted himself as an apprentice to a craftsman with many years of experience. For as many as ten years, the apprentice would live with his master and help him with all his projects. In return, the master craftsman would provide an education, passing down everything he knew about his craft to the apprentice. 

Step one: Identify the success you are working towards. (Look back at Fu- ture Self.) 

Step two: Find five people that have that success and ask to meet with them. (E-mail them, send them a letter, call their office, etc.) 

Step three: Ask these people three questions: What business practices best helped you reach your goal? What do you wish you had done more of in the last five years? If you could do it over what would you change? 

Step four: Take their advice and see how it fits into your life and business, then implement what might work for you. 

Step five: Use their advice for six months and let the person know how it worked. If it worked well, thank them and ask if they have further advice from there. If it didn’t work well, ask them if there’s something you are missing or can potentially change. 

Mindset 4 Circumstances :

Focus solely on what you can control. Trying to steer the circumstances out of your control will destroy your chances of success. 

Even in high school I was focused on high achievement. I remember worrying about one test so much that it impacted my sleep and consumed my every thought for days. 

Finally, one day I realized I couldn’t control what questions the teacher would ask, how much homework was due in other classes, or even whether or not the power would go out the night before, causing my alarm to reset and re- sulting in me waking up late.

The only thing I could really control was the amount of time I prepared for the test. When I stopped worrying about all the “what if’s,” I was finally able to take all that energy I spent worrying and put it into studying for the actual test. There are two types of circumstances: those you can control and those that you can’t. The way you view these two types of circumstances, and especially your mindset for approaching the circumstances you can’t control, directly af- fect your threshold for success. 

Focus on the Ten Percent 

Ignore the Ninety Percent 

Overcome Your Excuses 

In Difficult Circumstances, Do It Anyway 

Set Realistic Expectations

Make a list of the circumstances that are you are concerned with. Then, identify which of those circumstances are within your control. Shift your focus and activity to those. If you focus on these, the possibilities are endless. 

If you avoid discomfort, success will avoid you in return. Accomplish uncom- fortable things to increase your capacity for greatness and achieve your true potential. When you press into discomfort, you will find yourself alone at the head of the pack. 

You know what you want, and maybe you have a plan to get there, but what makes you different from everyone else? Why should a client come to you over the guy down the street? 

If you don’t know, neither will your customers. 

Almost everyone can do the basics of a sales job. It’s easy to get by while doing the bare minimum. All it takes is showing up, cold calling people, send- ing generic letters and boring spam emails. It’s easy to ask family and friends for referrals and then get enough business to live fairly comfortably, even if you’re not making that much of an impact on the world. 

How to Embrace Discomfort 

You have two options when it comes to discomfort. You can either choose to accept and embrace the challenge, or you can spend most your time avoiding it. You can live in fear of the discomfort, or realize that it is the only thing that will push you further and make you more successful. 

To be fair, both ways can work. Activity delivers results. However, easy, unfocused, comfortable activity will breed low level success, whereas if you want Rapid, Top-Level Success, you need challenging, ultra-focused, uncomfortable activity. 

When to Stop

You need to be aware of when to stop doing something that isn’t working. I wouldn’t have the success I do today if I hadn’t embraced discomfort and tried new things. But I also wouldn’t have the success I do now if I kept press- ing into things that just didn’t work. We must come to the realization that not everything we try is going to work, and sometimes we need to change the methods we use. 

You need to be aware of when to stop doing something that isn’t working. I wouldn’t have the success I do today if I hadn’t embraced discomfort and tried new things. But I also wouldn’t have the success I do now if I kept press- ing into things that just didn’t work. We must come to the realization that not everything we try is going to work, and sometimes we need to change the methods we use. 

Conflict is a tool to further your business goals. Use conflict to better understand your clients and colleagues, not as a fight to win. However, conflict can also re- veal business relationships that need to end. 

Although avoiding conflict often seems easier than confronting it, avoidance only brings more confusion to your business relationships. Healthy conflict al- lows you to gain new perspective, and if you can learn how to do conflict well, your business relationships will be strengthened. 

When you embrace the path to success, you are at the same time inviting conflict into your life. When you begin to be successful, you slowly stop becoming a “one-man show” and will find yourself needing more help. The more people are involved, the more beliefs and emotions that are added to your life, the more variables to affect your success, whether positively or nega- tively. At this point, conflict will be inevitable and necessary, and the discom- fort and hard conversations become much more valuable. The goal of success and growing your business is worth the conflict. 

The Goal of Conflict in Business

When I have a client call me and confront me about a certain investment or ac- count, I know now that I need to seek the root behind the problem in order to resolve the conflict. 

Don’t Avoid Conflict 

In my family, we go all in for conflict. We’ve been through so much together, and we recognize the benefit of being honest with one another even if it’s not something the other person wants to hear. We’ve created an intimacy and depth in our relationships this way. I’ve observed that people who avoid con- flict to save relationships actually end up with more shallow relationships. 

Conflict Gives You Perspective 

I’ve mentioned how conflict is about “gaining perspective”, but I want to take a minute and really focus on what that looks like. In 2015, there was a controversy that went viral over the color of a dress in a picture. Some people said it was clearly blue and black, while others claimed it was definitely white and gold. Some people were so determined that they were right that they did studies and even searches for the actual dress. This is the perfect example of why gaining perspective is so important. Something as small as the color of a dress can be seen drastically differently, and if we want the whole picture, we need to invite others to show us their perspective. 

Mindset 7 Time Balance :

You can only be the best at one thing at a time. Choose one area of life to opti- mize for top-level success and focus on it ruthlessly. 

No matter who you are, despite your race, gender, career, or salary, you have a limited amount of time in your life. Twenty-four hours each day to decide how you spend it. Time is your most valuable asset, and the choices you make about how to use it will determine whether you actually achieve success. 

Real Time vs. Clock Time 

There are actually two different kinds of time: real time and clock time. Clock time is the sixty seconds in every minute, the sixty minutes in every hour, and the 24 hours in every day. Clock time is measured equally. Real time is relative, dragging on or flying by, often dependent on what we’re doing. 

The Two Sides of the Time Balance Spectrum 

One example of a time balance situation most of us walk by daily is the water cooler. When I was first growing my business, I found out people perceived me as “not very friendly.” It’s not because I didn’t like my team members, it was because I wouldn’t take the time to stop and talk to people in the office. I wouldn’t hang out by the water cooler to talk about last night’s game or how the market was performing that day. When I was at the office, I worked head- down, non-stop every second of every day. 

When people would say hi or stop me to talk, I would be counting the sec- onds in my head, thinking this is a waste of time. I don’t have time to talk to you about how your kids are doing. Yes, I sound like a jerk, but that’s not the point. My priority at the office was to get work done, and that’s a good priority to have. 

Success Follows Intentionality 

I used to think that the amount of time I spent on something directly correlated the amount of success it would produce. Then I found that it’s not about the amount of “clock time,” but the amount of “real time” or intentional time. 

Intentional time is the deliberate, purposeful way you spend your time. Standing in a garage next to a car for five hours doesn’t make you a mechanic, but studying car manuals and being intentional about learning the trade will get you closer. 

When Priorities Conflict 

One of the hardest things for me in my business is conflicting priorities. I want to be the best I can be in my business, but if I were to completely focus on achieving that goal, I would have to make sacrifices in my relationship with my family. 

When I first discovered the concept of intentional time, I realized if I spent enough intentional time focused on a single goal, it would most likely succeed. It’s an amazing thing. Activity produces results, and intentional activity pro- duces compounded results. 

The Seven Mindsets in Action :

I don’t believe you can be successful without putting these mindsets into prac- tice. Although they might not know it, some of the most successful people in the world have learned and adopted these mindsets. 

Bill Gates²⁵ didn’t create a company that immediately leapt off the ground. He first created something called Traf-O-Data, a device that was supposed to read traffic reports and data to help traffic engineers reduce road congestion. Believe it or not, the product didn’t take off. 

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