Updated: Mar 2
How To Master Your Mindset
Would you be willing to swap the 10 items on this week's “honey do” list for one concept if I promise you will thank me for it? So that is a yes? Cross off the dry cleaner, post office, home depot and Good Will and replace it with this... Rewire Your Mindset. This swap has potential, real potential to transform your world. Read on if you believe J.K. Rowling when she says “We do not need magic to transform our world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already”
Have you ever listened and rated your thoughts with a + or - ? By this I mean listened with your whole body and not just for a few moments but for a few days? In different situations and conditions? Well I gave it a try and I gave myself a big fat minus.
Yup, I thought I had a positive mindset, I understood the concept and could teach it and apply it to my life but there is an enormous difference between knowing and living a positive mindset.
Here are the 5 things I found out about myself when I started to rewire my mindset.
1. When things were going well It was easy for me to have a positive mindset but as soon as there was stress or a challenging situation I quickly reverted to habit thinking. Habit thinking was an overgrown swamp of quicksand for me, sucking me down and holding me in recurring negative thoughts.
2. Rewiring my thinking not only changed my thoughts and mood but it also altered my behaviors and actions. It was a chain reaction and I only had to take the first step. Let me dive into this a little bit. When we have thoughts they become images (our brain loves images) which subconsciously turn into behaviors which then control our actions. So a negative thought or even a neutral thought turns into negative or neutral action, on the flipside positive thoughts turn into positive actions.
3. When I changed my thoughts I changed the energy I was putting out around me so instead of spraying poo-pourri I started spraying pot-pourri and people noticed.
4. When I began to focus my attention on changing the negative thoughts to positive ones the chain reaction took over and my behaviors and actions changed, doors opened and there were more wins and forward momentum.
5. Rewiring is not easy and it is not quick. I have recently embarked on this journey and I have seen enough benefit to keep going but this will require regular practice. But I am amazing and I can do hard things! (my affirmation at work!)
So what's the homework?
#1 Tune in Set your intention to tune into your thoughts and become aware of how many are negative and how many are positive.
#2 Time to rewire. When stress is low notice some neutral or negative thoughts and flip them to more positive ones. I find that driving in the car, going for a walk, and doing chores are all low stress practice times. For example “I am going to be so late for this.” flipped becomes “I have time, it will all work out as it always does”
#3 Notice. Start to notice how your thoughts are showing up in your energy, in the words you choose and ultimately in your actions. This step is important because it will become your motivator to keep going.
#4 Catch yourself in the act. When you find yourself thinking “I am so bad at computers ugh!” Pause and rewire in the new thoughts. This might look like reframing the thought “I have got this computer thing, I know so much more than I used too” or replacing it with an affirmation. Some examples might be
I believe in myself, and trust my own wisdom;
I am a successful person;
I am confident and capable at what I do.
Here is an awesome example. This girl rocks the affirmations. Watch this video and you will just KNOW this girl is going to do great things.
What does this look like in the classroom?
We highly recommend you model a positive mindset in all that you do. Your actions as a role model speak louder than you know. As for direct instruction we suggest focusing on the work of Carol Dweck on fixed vs growth mindset.
Talk to your kids about growth vs fixed mindset by Carol Dweck.
Check out this article for ideas on how to help kids adopt a growth mindset from The Greater Good Science Center.
Set some routines when returning assignments or tests where students can reflect on what they did well and what they can improve on. When I was in the classroom we returned each paper and exam with a slip of paper with 3 questions on it. What did I do well? What will I do differently next time? What did I learn from this?
Have a class affirmation and mascot some examples might be “I can do hard things” “ I am enough” “ I have all I need inside of me”