Developing A Positive Mindset: How Do You Do It?

Dan Sullivan
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At Strategic Coach, we focus on building tools that allow entrepreneurs to think more deeply about their businesses, their lives, and what they want to achieve in their lifetimes. And while much of our work is catered toward entrepreneurship, it’s important to remember that many of the qualities we strive for as entrepreneurs are equally as vital in other facets of our lives.

Developing a positive mindset is one of the most powerful things you can do to not only improve the lives of those around you, but improve all of your interactions and relationships throughout your life.

The power of developing a positive mindset.

It’s no secret that a positive mindset can help you feel better about yourself, achieve more, and inspire those around you. But that’s just the beginning—when we really look at the power of a positive mindset, we see that it has a compounding effect.

Developing a positive mindset leads to progress, which leads to confidence, which in turn leads to more positivity. This cycle continues to repeat, building momentum. That momentum compounds upon itself, allowing us to achieve exponential results in whatever we’re doing—just by starting out with a simple positive mindset.

Positive thinking comes down to focusing on what’s working—not what isn’t working. This is incredibly valuable because when we focus our attention on what is working, we’re able to generate more of it. That, once again, causes momentum and accelerates progress.

Which brings us to the other benefit of developing a positive mindset: progress! One of our core values at Strategic Coach is “progress, not perfection.” Too often—both in business and in life—we hyperfocus on problems without ever taking the time to reflect on all the progress we’ve made. Even when it doesn’t seem like it, good things are happening and progress is being made every day.

It’s important that we get in the mindset of recognizing this progress, both in our businesses and in every other area of our lives. Encouraging a positive mindset among those around you is one of the best things you can do as a leader—and whether you realize it or not, you’re a leader to your family, friends, and loved ones.

So, what is the key to developing a positive mindset? Like anything, it takes practice. When we look at positive thinking, it comes down to training your brain to find progress.

Here’s a simple exercise to start. At the end of the day, find three things that worked. Even if you’ve had a terrible day—just find three things. After a while, doing this becomes so natural, you won’t even realize you’re doing it, and you’ll find that something good comes out of every single day. This is an incredibly valuable—and simple!—habit to develop and share with those around you.

The Positive Focus tool.

The Positive Focus tool is one of the best ways to develop your own positive mindset while at the same time improving the mindsets of others. It’s a perfect example of something that can be equally as powerful for your work team, your family, your friends, and everyone in between.

To give you some insight into just how powerful this tool is, we use it at the beginning of every Strategic Coach meeting and at the beginning of all of our workshops. In fact, you can use this to start any meeting, conversation, or event—in any setting!

The reason The Positive Focus is so good at getting people into the moment is because our brains tend to be focused on other things even if we think we’re in the moment. It could be the traffic jam you encountered on the way into the office, the fight you had with your spouse the night before, the deadline that’s looming over your head … Whether we realize it or not, our minds are usually preoccupied with things of that nature.

Focusing on what’s working is a profound way to get people into the moment. It also has the added benefit of making everyone more confident, as we know that a positive mindset instills confidence. People who are confident supply better answers, speak up more, and are more engaged in whatever they’re doing.

And even if you brush all that aside, wouldn’t you always rather be in a positive meeting than a negative one?

Looking to take your positive thinking to the next level? Download our free Positive Focus exercise to stay focused on the right things.

The four simple steps to positivity.

With regular use, The Positive Focus can become a life-changing habit. True to its name, this exercise gets you focused on the positive: your accomplishments, wins, and all the great things going on in your life.

When you implement this simple exercise into other aspects of your life outside of business, you’ll start to see everyone around you develop their own positive mindset. Things will shift, and your interactions will become more positive, thought-provoking, and powerful.

To do The Positive Focus for yourself, follow these four simple steps:

  1. Write down your five most important achievements from the past day, week, quarter, or year.
  2. Write down the reason each one is important to you.
  3. What is the next step you want to take for each?
  4. Finally, what is a specific first action that will move you forward right away?

Doing this exercise will help you quickly develop the mindset of “progress, not perfection.” When you start to focus on progress, your mindset shifts—and you start to see the positive aspects of everything you do. Once you develop this positive mindset, it becomes much easier to stay calm and figure out the next steps in whatever you’re doing. Instead of reactive and trying to solve problems or put out fires, you’ll be able to plan ahead while becoming strong, capable, and resilient.

The best part? Those same qualities will start to appear in everyone around you. I’d highly recommend doing this exercise with the people you spend the most time with—whether that’s your family, friends, or coworkers. Try it for yourself first, and share it with them after you’ve done it a few times. Then, think about who else in your life might benefit from it.

Once everyone around you has a positive mindset, you’ll be amazed at the kind of progress you’re all able to make.

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