As my teammate David Rutherford reminded us this morning on his show, Self Confidence Mission 1- Have a positive attitude one of the foundations of self confidence is maintaining a positive attitude. This can also be one of the most challenging things to do as our lives are often filled with stress, unexpected demands, competing and disparate priorities and a level of chaos in the workplace, and even our personal lives that is unprecedented.
How do you maintain a positive mindset throughout any circumstance? This is a fundamental question that we all face. Here are a few easy steps that work for me:
HAVE MISSION FOCUS- Accept that your personal and professional challenges are missions to be accomplished. Learn to think about missions in the same way that a Special Forces or SEAL team does. Elite teams have multiple levels of mission focus that must be considered at all times. In simple terms, big to small. There is the strategic mission, (the overall national objective), the unit mission (your team's specific task) and your individual mission (your role within your team). Our personal and professional challenges are no different. At work, consider your company's overall mission or "reason for being". You've accepted or agreed to uphold that mission, at least for the time, so embrace it and live it. Below the company mission is your team's mission that fits in with the overall strategy and ensures company success or failure. Below the team mission is your individual mission, the personal satisfaction you feel from doing a good job, being a productive member of society, supporting your family or achieving professional goals. Keep your focus on these three levels of mission mindset at all times and you will find it much easier to maintain the positive mindset.
LEARN WHAT IT TAKES TO ACCOMPLISH THE MISSION- At all levels there are principles that must be followed in order to achieve mission success at the strategic, team and individual levels. Professional advancement, promotion and corporate leadership all require loyalty and demonstrated actions that support the strategic objective, or in other words, you have to "drink the cool aid" from your organization at times. The trick is knowing what cool aid, and in what amounts to drink. Being a successful and contributing member of a team also requires following certain principle and practices. Attending the occasional after hours work function, or "mandatory fun", speaking up and contributing at meetings and not whining (as Dave explained perfectly) are necessary in order to help your team achieve it's mission. Finally, you have to maintain focus on achieving your personal mission which may require taking deliberate steps to increase your chance for promotion, strike a better work/life balance, having the courage to seek new challenges or responsibilities or begin a serious exercise program. Keep a focus on the specific things necessary to achieve mission success at all three levels and constantly think 2 or 3 steps ahead.
IMPROVE YOUR SKILLS AND CAPABILITIES- Here is the bottom line, improving yourself is YOUR responsibility. Most organizations and companies simply do not have the budget, time or ability to train you to "exceed the standard". You have to take responsibility for your improvement and seek out training opportunities. Be creative and think boldly when identifying what you need to work on. Strive to acquire skills and capabilities that are readily available in all circumstances, are transferable and increase your self confidence. Set aggressive goals, and do NOT focus on what you can't do, focus on what you can do. "Anchor you heart to your mind" (David Rutherford)
REMEMBER: "HARD TIMES DON'T LAST, HARD PEOPLE DO"
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