Mindset is an aspect of business that we often overlook, or think that we can work on later, once all of the "important stuff" is in place. However, your mindset and beliefs shape the entire foundation of not just your biz, but you life, and whatever kind of mindset you have will dictate the kind of outcomes you have in it.
Working as a business and clarity coach, I use what I call the "inside-out" approach to biz, where I look at what is going on in your inner world, that is causing the outcomes in the physical world.
So, what better way to talk about this internal dynamic than with mindset? For those unfamiliar, mindset basically refers to the way your inner-world reflects the thoughts, feelings, actions, and intentions that you have. How are you putting yourself out there and how is that affecting your external realities?
That’s mindset, in a nutshell.
I’m going to walk you through 5 ways your mindset is driving your business in ways you are probably not aware of and how to fix the negative sides of that coin, so that you can radiate the confidence, self-love, and success that you deserve.
1. Limiting Beliefs//
To put it simply, your beliefs dictate your reality. Limiting beliefs are exactly that- beliefs that represent a limit you put on yourself and your ability. They aren’t necessarily something you’re going to be aware of though, because they exist on a subconscious level. Your subconscious mind is formed in the first few years of your life, so the influences, messages, and situations you were in and observant to have caused you to come to certain conclusions about life and the way things are, that you repeat and seek to validate over and over again.
Let’s take relationships as an example. When I was young, my parents had a lot of issues in their marriage that led them to get divorced when I was 5 years old. However, I don’t actually have any memory of my parents having or being in a happy relationship, which caused me to subconsciously learn that marriage was hard and dysfunctional, therefore forming the limiting belief that a healthy marriage or relationship isn’t possible for me. So, I’ve sought out dysfunctional people and romantic situations as I’ve grown up, as a way to confirm that limiting belief.
These limiting beliefs are ingrained deeply, so identifying them is the first step and not an easy task to be sure. A good place to start are your triggers- start to ask yourself what exactly is triggering you and where these triggers come from. What situations as a child can you think of when you felt this for the first time? This will lead you to identifying your limiting beliefs that are holding you back in your business and your life.
2. A Mindset Practice (or Lack Thereof)//
What’s your mindset practice?
If you were able to quickly and easily tell me what you do routinely to keep yourself in check, fab. If not, listen up.
A mindset practice is a set of behaviors or actions that you do consistently in order to cultivate the frame of mind that you desire. Most people would like to be able to think positively and have good things happen to them, so that’s exactly the central principle and goal that your mindset practice will have.
Think of the things you like to do that relax you and allow you to center yourself. Cooking? Reading? Affirmations? Going for walks?
Also, think about the things that you do for self-care and nurture. Eating healthy? Getting in time at the gym? Journaling?
Now combine these two to find your perfect mindset practice. What’s going to work for you is different than what will work for me, it’s just a matter of combining that self-care and grounding to really find that center of balance.
If you’re still stuck, common mindset practices that I would encourage you to try out are meditation, writing in a journal, creating affirmations, getting outside, exercising, cooking healthy meals, and yoga.
3. A Fear of Failure (and Success)//
You might be limiting yourself by having a sneaky fear of failure that comes up everytime your business is about take off into the stratosphere.
Fearing failure, and thus sabotaging your success as a way to protect you from the possibility of failure, is a common mindset problem that a lot of entrepreneurs grapple with.
Tackling this type of mindset problem comes down to changing your inner dialogue and thought process. You need to practice affirmations about success, you need to journal about what it will feel like when you reach your goals, and you need to visualize yourself succeeding, no matter what obstacles come in your way.
Now, I want to talk about a fear of success, which is just as common as a fear of failure, but hardly ever recognized.
Being afraid of success comes from believing that you don’t deserve it or aren’t able to create success, on some level. You might actually be more afraid of hearing a “yes” than a “no” from a potential client, because that would mean that you actually have to deal with your proposition WORKING!
Ask yourself if you’re sabotaging your own success by keeping yourself playing small and if you’re being really honest, if there’s more you can do to put yourself on the line.
4. The Upper Limit Problem//
One of my all-time favorite business books is The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks, which theorizes that the reason you can’t or haven’t done something yet is because you have some kind of upper limit you’ve imposed on yourself and the world about how something works for you and your mind constantly works to recreate that reality. Essentially, if you’re presented with a circumstance that is outside of your mind's idea of the realm of possibility, you’re going to do one of two things to correct it: change your limit or change your circumstances. 99% of the time, you’re going to change the circumstances to avoid this cognitive dissonance, rather than changing the mindset.
Why? Because it’s not only subconscious, but it’s bullshit you’ve been buying into for YEARS. It’s a lot easier to change something immediate than something you’ve been committed to, right?
The Upper Limit Problem thus dictates that the upper limits that you attach to your success, wealth, and happiness are self-imposed, through your conditioning. The good news it that you can change them.
I would recommend reading the book yourself to find out fully how to address your upper limits, but a few key signs to look for to see if you’re falling into this trap include sudden illness, self- sabotage, an inability to maintain success, and crises happening right after or before you’re about to make it big.
How do you talk about yourself, both with other and to yourself? Do you judge yourself harshly? Do you focus on your achievements or on your failures?
How we talk about ourselves reflects the reality of how we feel about ourselves, deep down. And if this relationship is dysfunctional, it’s going to make itself known in your mindset and in your business.
If you talk negatively about yourself, do you think that that’s going to draw people into work with you? Do you think they’ll be inspired or want to take you seriously? Of course not. That’s why positive self-talk is SO important!
If you’re constantly berating yourself, you’re not going to get anywhere.
Whenever you catch yourself talking negatively about yourself, ask if you would speak to or about a friend that way? No? Then don’t you dream of speaking to yourself that way, because you are the best damn friend you could ever have!
People want to work with those who are confident and self-assured- start to cultivate that energy and watch how your circumstances change.
Erin McKelle is a business coach, astrology guru,feminist blogger, entrepreneur, and creative evangelist. She divides her time between working as a consultant for clients ranging from startups to small non-profits, coaching entrepreneurial-minded millennial women to business greatness, writing for popular online publications, and building her empire. When not engaged in a passion project, Erin can usually be found reading a book, cooking up a new recipe, or obsessing over pop-culture. You can find her at Coaching by Erin and Queen of Luxe, facebook and on social media @ErinMcKelle