Can Mindset Lead To More Positive Outcomes In Your Life?

You can’t control everything that may happen during the day, but you can control how you approach it. That’s important because research shows that mindset plays a significant role in determining life’s outcomes. By understanding, adapting and shifting your mindset, you can improve your health, decrease your stress and become more resilient to life’s challenges.

Mindset is something I’ve focused on quite a bit over the past two years. In 2020, I attended 40 Years of Zen, a guided five-day Master Program designed to teach you how to “bio hack” your brain to maximize the impact you can have on your own life. The program incorporates deep meditation, biofeedback and nutrition, among other techniques, to increase focus, awareness, memory and overall brain performance. Neuro and biofeedback are used to help improve blood flow to the brain, which contributes significantly to creativity and influences problem solving and many other skills we use in our daily lives.

One of the things I learned from that experience is the importance of changing or tweaking your mindset to better align with your goals. For instance, if you value being strong and healthy, you need to place appropriate emphasis on exercise and nutrition to feed those goals. If you want to spend more time with family and friends, you need to need to find ways to reduce time wasters in other areas of your life, including work, that are preventing you from living what you consider to be your best life.

The relationship between mindset, purpose and productivity is something that Ben Franklin was keenly aware of and made a conscious effort to incorporated into his daily routine. Franklin was a polymath—someone whose knowledge spans a substantial number of subjects and is known to draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems. In addition to being one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, a drafter and signer of the United States Declaration of Independence, and the first United States postmaster general, he was a writer, scientist, inventor, diplomat, printer, publisher and political philosopher. In other words, on any given day, he had a lot going on. Yet he began and ended each day focused on mindset. His well-documented daily routine began and ended with two questions. Each morning he asked himself: What good shall I do this day? And each evening he followed up with: What good have I done today?

Franklin attributed much of his success to his well-documented morning routine. Every day, from 5 to 7 a.m., he would “rise, wash, and address Powerful Goodness!” From there, he moved on to “Contrive day’s business, and take the resolution of the day; prosecute the present study, and breakfast.”

One of the things that stands out to me is that, upon waking, Franklin chose to feed his mind first and his stomach second. Addressing “Powerful Goodness” before the break of dawn can be a high bar to emulate when most of us are just trying to lace up our running shoes correctly or are stumbling blurry eyed to the kitchen in search of caffeine. Yet, that’s exactly the right time to reflect on how you will approach the day ahead.

I’m a firm believer that even just a few minutes spent channeling positive emotions first thing in the morning—before tackling email, news, social media feeds and other distractions—can set the tone for your day. Personally, I like to get outside and walk first thing in the morning, whenever the weather permits. Often, I’ll listen to an audio book on a topic that inspires or motivates me. Other times I simply let my mind open up and wander, allowing the creative juices to flow where they will. I also try to meditate each day, sometimes I combine this with walking, hiking or yoga. However you choose to engage in “mind” time, the important thing is to make it a regular part of your daily routine.

It’s also important to exercise patience. Shifting your mindset takes time, effort and commitment. It’s not dissimilar to achieving certain physical goals, such as building strength, losing weight or improving endurance. Change take place gradually and regular maintenance is required to stay in shape. So how do you get started?

In an interview with Dr. Jacob Towery, adjunct clinical instructor in the department of psychiatry at Stanford University for the Stanford Report, you can change your mindset by learning and consciously choosing to believe that your characteristics are not predetermined and that you can continue to grow over time. That means that even a fixed mindset is not set in stone.

According to Towery, “The exciting news about mindsets is that they are absolutely changeable. The entire field of cognitive therapy is based on the idea that thoughts determine feelings and that you can learn powerful techniques to modify distorted thoughts and self-defeating beliefs.” He encourages questioning self-defeating thoughts and creating new narratives that are more self-serving. If you develop a growth mindset, setbacks can become learning opportunities and there is always another chance to improve and feel better.

Mindset also has broad implications for your financial wellbeing. When money habits or activities are misaligned with your financial goals, that can lead to poor decision-making, which can delay or even derail your plans. For example, fear, negativity or greed can lead to investors trying to time the markets or making decisions based on what others are doing (herd mentality). Thoughts like, “I’ll never save enough to retire,” can become a self-fulfilling prophecy if behaviors, such as delaying or stopping saving altogether, align with those negative thoughts.

The opposite is also true. The ability to envision your end goals and align savings, spending and investment behaviors with those goals can help you remain on the path toward achieving the outcomes you desire. That’s where working with an independent wealth advisor who also serves as your financial coach can make a difference. One advantage that independent advisors bring to the financial decision-making process is the ability to provide clear, rational and objective perspectives, devoid of emotional biases. This becomes even more important during times of increased market volatility or economic uncertainty. In fact, according to a study published on WealthManagement.com in January 2022, 40% of high net worth Americans who had an advisor experienced asset growth during the pandemic while only 27% of those without an advisor could report the same results. Those with advisors also reported feeling far more prepared to transfer wealth to heirs than those who do not work with a financial expert.

Is it time to adjust your financial mindset? Download our complimentary checklist: When Shifting Goals Means Shifting Plans to determine if it’s time to think about updating your plan or strategy.

Author Profile

Mark Boardman
Mark Boardman
Mark Boardman is an established showbiz journalist and freelance copywriter whose work has been published in Business Insider, Daily Mail, Bloomberg, MTV, Buzzfeed and The New York Post amongst other press. Often spotted on the red carpet at celebrity events and film screenings, Mark is a regular guest on BBC Radio London and in-demand for his opinions for media outlets including Newsweek. His TV credits include This Morning, The One Show and T4. Email Mark@MarkMeets.com

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