Last week I had the pleasure to be interviewed by Caroline Partridge, which you can find here, CEO of Social Strategy Mum. We covered the topic of how to have a mindset of a CEO within your own business. In this blog I will discuss the factors that impact our ability to think like a CEO as well as strategies on how to reach that mindset.

Entrepreneurship has never been more popular. Setting up one’s own business is more accessible then even before. Yet so many people fail to realise the potential of their business because of the mindset.

Strategy Vs Mindset

As business people, it has been drummed into us that you must have a sound business strategy in order to have a successful business. But is this all? The simple answer is no.

You can have the most sound business strategy but if your mindset is not in line with your goals then your strategy won’t be very useful to you. Here is a truth bomb: it all starts from the mind. Your wiring will dictate whether you succeed or fail. You can have a very average strategy but with the right mindset you are more likely to achieve your business goals.

Every successful person is successful because they’ve been able to unlock the mindset piece. Remember behavior is an echo of our belief.  For example, if you think you are going to fail at something then you will most likely will. Why? Because your beliefs will drive your behaviors which will ultimately lead to the result. Here is a real life example: “I am never going to be a size 12 (belief). So I go and eat a tub of ice cream (behavior). And I don’t achieve the goal of being a size 12 (result).

Does your mindset support or hinder you?

Mindset is simply the way we think about things. When we are thinking about the CEO mindset, there can be a lot of resistance in our mind around this idea. The reason for this is that most of us didn’t grow up in families that owned businesses. Our beliefs and wiring will either support or hinder us. Common hindrances include thoughts such as “Who are you to be doing this?” “You are giving up a full time job for a maybe” “You are not spending enough time with your family as a result of this business” and the list goes on. All these things keep us small. They don’t build us up but put doubt and fear into us.

One of the biggest mindset hurdles I find with my clients is caused by leaving the security of full time employment. Trading the security of a certain paycheck for the uncertainty of starting your own business is daunting. All those self-sabotaging thoughts start to creep in prevent us from reaching the CEO Mindset.

Deciding to start your own business means change. When change occurs, we unconsciously panic. So does everyone else around us. The reason people around us panic is because they think “ so and so is changing, does that mean that I also have to change too?”

The unconscious mind – friend or foe?

Your unconscious mind stores memory and information. This is where all your wiring is stored. It can be compared to a four year old: it likes and seeks pleasure, avoids pain and is incredibly persistent. It tries to make us safe and links to past experiences. This is the home of all our internal beliefs. Your unconscious mind plays an important role in functioning of your brain. Making it your friend rather than foe will depend on your wiring.

Information processing

When our brain receives information, we are only able to process a very tiny amount of this information. Most stuff gets missed. Then how does the brain choose which bits to process? It depends on your wiring. The information received turns into a representation in your mind. This affects how we feel and our behaviors. This in turns affects our result.

Here is an example: you just delivered a speech at a family wedding. Your cousin says to you “wow that was fantastic, you did that so well.” To which you reply: ”oh no I didn’t, I forgot to say this, and I read too much from my palm cards and I was nervous…” A response like this to a compliment shows that there is a deep seated wiring of “I am not good enough”.

But how do I change my wiring to support me?

We can change our wiring by awareness, structure, and routine which influences behavior, mindset support and good strategies. There is a core belief that once you take it on board you can never go back. Once you realise that you are in control how you react, you become in change of your own wiring.

So how do I achieve the CEO Mindset?

  1. Make a decision to be the CEO of your business

Tell your mind that you now have a business. This is a powerful first step.Ask yourself: if this was easy what steps would I take towards success?

2. Then take those steps. One at time.

3. Check in with your unconscious mind

When it starts to feed you negative thoughts, ask yourself “What is there to learn from this? Is there something I need to push through?” If there is nothing useful simply thank your mind for looking out for you and move on.

4. Have your CEO time

 Once a week sit down and have a look at your numbers. Make it fun. For example, you can do it in your backyard in the sun with a cup of tea. Book it out into your diary and never miss that appointment. Remember what gets managed gets measured.

5. What are you making it mean?

When something good or bad happens in your business what are you making it mean? Say you had a slow week. Are you making it mean “I am not good enough, I will never make it..etc” Or do I need to revisit my sales strategy?

6. We get what we focus on

Our mind looks for things that reinforce beliefs.  Otherwise we go insane. Choose what to focus on and you will start to see it trickle through your business.

See the full interview here

If you’d like to work with me one-on-one on mindset simply drop me a line [email protected]

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