Why your success starts in your head first

What is success? Getting past ‘Selfish’

The whole idea of personal success is an abstract idea. Namely everyone has a different definition and more so the bigger your goal the more likely you are to either feel selfish about it or worse, have people around you tell you you’re selfish and try to beat your dream to death before it even has time to drop roots.

Unlike most people I’m ‘Pro Dream.’ Why are dreams bad? They’re not! Why are ambitious goals bad? They’re not. After all if you’re employed by … anyone the chances are you’re part of someone else’s dream. See how easy it is to dismiss the evil rationale?

But when it comes to your own ‘success’ goals it is important to understand that you can set any definition or indicator that you choose. The real success goals and definitions are arbitrary and can be anything one likes.

The real challenge is in giving yourself permission to ‘want’ to succeed in those goals. And this is why the first step in any success story starts in one’s own mind, where you actually give yourself permission to chase your dream and strive toward your end goal, and this means allowing yourself to change within your mental and emotional space.

Related: The Mindset shift to being your own boss

Foresight and Motivation

At the very centre of any dream that is worth pursuing is a motivator – a root cause that when everything seems to be failing and falling around you, remains as an indestructible iron clad datum point which you can use to pick yourself up and start again. Not even a nuclear strike at your mental core can scratch a powerful motivator.

In fact the only thing that can damage your motivation is you and this comes from a lack of belief. The good news is that belief is easy to restore and so long as your faith at the centre of your motivation remains ‘true’ your motivator is indestructible, and you can begin your journey through your change. 

Related: Wilful Ignorance


When it comes to the process of personal change and adopting a success mindset don’t be surprised when you start to encounter the stage of denial.

Simply put this is all about internally and mentally trying to deny that there is a need for change. This can show in many ways including the belief that your current position and everything therein will somehow manage to get you to your personal goal no matter how much evidence there is to the contrary.

Related: Why a a bank is the worst place to keep your money


The resistance stage is perhaps the most emotionally turbulent part of the change process. It is also the stage where sub-conscious ‘self-sabotage’ starts to show through.

This self-sabotage comes through in many forms including the formation of excuses as to why you either cannot or should not take further action toward your goal, such as feeling not good enough to reach the goal in the first place or even fearing what it would mean or feel to reach your first milestone.

Resistance can also be the excuse of negative self-talk where your personal goal is simply too big to achieve. After all if you can convince yourself that something is too hard then it becomes easier to abandon.

This can also manifest in personal guilt, particularly when change at a personal level can impact on people around you, such as leaving a position that you have held for a lengthy period of time, or having feelings of loyalty creep in to keep you fixed in your current position. Resistance takes on many forms and takes a lot of personal effort and evidence to overcome. More than anything else resistance hits home when it involves you becoming uncomfortable by doing new activities that you have never done before.


Like any market, if and when you reach exploration you’re in a good spot. Statistically you’re part of the 37% who understand there is a problem and now are looking for information and a method with which you can use to execute your transformational change.

Resistance will still creep in particularly if options that you begin to explore are complex or trigger a personal fear response, such as when an idea seems too good to be true. Moments like this bring resistance back into play and small setbacks will also raise the question of whether your change is worth it.

Exploration will involve education and getting educated prior to commitment is vital, not only to ensure that the committed course of action is workable, but also to know and understand what your course of action will require from you and to make sure you’re committed to your decision.

Not all plans will suit everyone! I cannot stress that enough! Even my plan will not suit everyone.

Related: Why money for time is a poor trade


Once all of these periods have been fought through; the acceptance of needing change, the rationalised logic of knowing that you are allowed to change and the identification of what you will do to achieve it, Commitment is the most exciting, consuming and enlightening stage of the process.

Commitment is exciting because it involves the first and subsequent steps of the change process and over time leads to exponential personal growth.

Commitment is consuming because small victories validate your ability to follow through and provide the ongoing momentum needed to chase the next milestone. Ultimately nothing is more addictive than a positive result.

And finally it is enlightening, because after regularly getting out of your comfort zone, to do new awkward things, small successes prove that new knowledge and experiences have been used with positive results. To compliment this, failures also provide ruthless feedback about doesn’t work and adds to your experiences about how you can help others avoid the same mistakes.

Ultimately commitment is where it all happens.

The rest of the journey

Change is an ongoing process. The first conscious decision to implement change particularly when it comes to setting a ‘winning mindset’ is new and uncomfortable and the first time anything new is ever explored is always uncomfortable.

However as time goes on more changes will be made, and the most exciting aspect to further change is that you will become comfortable with being uncomfortable, not because it is something you have done previously, but instead because of what it will mean in the future.

Success! You're on the list.

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