Archive for May 3rd, 2013

The Beautiful Mind: Habits that hold us back May 3rd, 2013

Vinod Kumar

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going – Jim Rohn

Our mind is actually an interesting beast. It can be really powerful and make us achieve the unthinkable. Watching at some of the world records acts that involve our physical body to go to the next level, it surely reassures how powerful our minds can be. A positive thinking can make a world of difference to what we can achieve in life.

Though I talk about being positive, there are tons of these habits that we carry as baggage with us which can easily cripple us as an individual. We know we have it within us but fail or ignore it being there. It is important for us to recognize such habits and to have a happier, easier and a positive life, we need to get rid of them.

Below are my take on few dangerous habits (in-my-opinion) that I feel we get controlled via our beautiful mind. Don’t underestimate the power of your mind, it can take you places or it can make you fall to places you never wanted to venture !!!

1. Be ambiguous (if needed)

See life like a mirror and accept what it gives you. Seeing things always as black-or-white can always cloud your mind away from accepting exceptions. It is not always that you are right and the other person is wrong or one method is good while other bad or it needed not be this way or that way … There can be areas of gray which we must learn to experiment with.

Such mindset create tremendous problem for you and people around. In these situations, you are so critical about what you do and you put unfair stress onto yourself. Make a genuine effort to understand the other side of the story – there is lots to learn from people around you.

Never permit failure to become a habit – William Frederick

2. Don’t get cozy !!!

Our mind is always apprehensive of uncertainties and it always places us in the safest of zones. The mind is scary of the unknown and change is uncomfortable for many of us to even think. How many of you out there have got comfortable with the company you work for? Are you scared of change? This is fundamentally a mind game.

As we talk about getting out of comfort zone, what really hold us back is the fear for change. The best way to overcome this is to challenge your comfort zone and stretch beyond what you are doing, stretch beyond what you are capable off, stretch beyond what others perceive is possible by you – your mind is what controls you, high time you start controlling it: Period :).

We first make our habits, and then our habits make us – Dryden, John

In career, just like what got you to where you are – doesn’t assure you where you would in the future. So break the shackles and take a positive step to do things outside your comfort zone.

3. Don’t let your mind dominate you

Good habits, once established are just as hard to break as are bad habits – Robert Puller

This is a tough one. Most of the times our instincts about what we feel dictates what we do. Simple example is – I don’t feel great as the day starts and I tend to skip a gym workout. Remember, you can hardly predict what you feel maybe in an hours time :). Life is about dominating your mind – not the other way.

As we dissect our mind, it always tries to select the path of lowest resistance. In other words, it is our laziness that is playing games :).

4. begrudge is poisonous

When you envy someone, let it not poison your thoughts – it can be a devil whispering in your ears and throwing you all over the place. If you don’t have an appetite for this, keep away – as it can be really distracting and irritating from time-to-time.

I always say this to many, focusing on yourself can take you a longer distance than looking at the other person. Always realize that you don’t control what the other person does but on the contrary you control what you can achieve. So focus on yourself now. Get a life and be grateful to what you have got. The future presents infinite possibilities, so don’t question your ability to achieve it.

Quality is not an act, it is a habit – Aristotle

5. Be a student

In the IT industry, I personally feel this is again a mind game. We don’t know everything and don’t assume you know everything. Be open to learning the same subject from your peers, subordinate, leader and others.

Have an open mind and don’t close your thoughts to learn something new from what you hear. Our mind always tries to play games in comparing with what we already know and our instinct is to find faults all the time. In such situations, you are bound to miss out the smallest of learning that was possible. If you want to learn something, cut your ego and become a student again.

Final thoughts

The final thought as I sign away is – don’t be the over-thinker. As we discussed before, let the gray areas exist, don’t analyze too much, have a macro plan and execute the micro plans as they happen. Be ready for change and train your mind.

So what are your thoughts on this subject. Do you agree, disagree or have experience to share? Please feel free to drop me a note.

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