You've likely heard of "The Secret," (the book, record and movie which strongly affirm the importance of creating positivity in your life). There are also several sales/leadership books written about the Power of Positive Thinking. It's also possible you've had mentors or managers who have discussed the topic about "sales attitudes." This could be anything from putting yourself into a "positive frame of mind" or "keeping it positive." This post takes these thoughts one step further.
I believe (along with a great many others) that we should be genuinely grateful for who we are and what we have (no religion or spirituality required here). Each and every interaction, every thought process should be reflected back to us with an angle of gratitude. Here's an example: Today happens to be Tuesday (it's not my favorite day of the week, but I am grateful to where I am today on a Tuesday). I have people who love and care for me. I have a job where I can interact with other people and be paid for it. I am grateful. It's as simple as that.
When I take this approach, every moment I spend thinking about gratitude excites neurons inside my brain in the neocortex that release neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin. These chemicals are "reinforcement" and "reward" chemicals that train my actions through a positive reinforcement model to continue this behavior. When I do the opposite (which is to think with my ego, only care about myself, only see the glass half empty, complain about what I don't have or didn't get, etc.), a different area of my brain becomes excited (amygdala). This area of the brain is rudimentary and hasn't changed much since our evolutionary cousins, the dinosaurs were walking around. In this simple explanation, you can see that, in many ways, we create our own future. We create the outcomes we get through the choices of thinking.
You may be saying to yourself that thinking alone doesn't actually create reality. My hypothesis to you is that BELIEF in that thinking does create reality and you can control outcomes through a grateful approach to thinking. The key difference here is do you really believe it, and that is accomplished through our subconscious. I can say something out loud, but until I really feel it and believe it subconsciously, it is just a statement that I make.
If you take this concept a step further, you can train your subconscious through the practical approach of writing something down. Journal about it. Try this experiment: Spend 10 minutes a night working on a single work or life goal. Visualize the result you want. Write down what it looks like, feels like, smells like. Read it back to yourself and then read it again the next morning. If you do this for about a week, your subconscious starts to lock onto it. FYI - You can't wish for $1m and then you'll suddenly get $1m - that's magic. You can, however, put a plan together on how you'll earn that $1m and you can focus in on those goals. As my coach/mentor, Mark David, says, "put your order into the universe."
I continue to be amazed at the most difficult tasks being accomplished by non-traditional methods when approached from the perspective of gratitude. Here are some questions to ask yourself every day:
- What are all the incredible things that you can be grateful about today?
- How can I help myself today by looking at things with a grateful, positive perspective?
- How can I help other people today without expecting anything in return?
- What value can I add to my co-workers or friends today that would help them?
- Today, what can I do that centers around how I feel on the inside versus the external hustle of life?