The Hidden Secret Of Success: Powering Up Your Attitude
Your attitude determines your altitude in life, not your aptitude. 90% of success comes from having a positive attitude.
The greatest obstacle towards achieving success in your life is the inability to back yourself and believe success is possible. Instead of focusing on strengths, most people focus on their weaknesses and limitations (The Attitude Cycle).
Many have a diluted sense of themselves and what they can or can’t achieve. They don’t see the greatness within, nor do they believe they can achieve whatever they put their mind to. This is a major reason they don’t set goals, for they don’t believe they will ever reach them. Their attitude affects their self-esteem.
Self-esteem can be defined as your internal belief system and how you respond to and experience life externally. Self-esteem is the way you think and feel about yourself and others. Your self-esteem is usually measured by the way you act, and the way you act is largely a result of how you feel.
Each of us is born with the capacity to experience positive feelings and form a positive self-image. However, it is also possible to learn not to like yourself and form a negative self-image leading to poor self-esteem. Either way, the feelings you have about yourself are largely a result of your life experiences and the influences in your life during your formative years.
The image you have of yourself determines what you think, what you see, what you feel, how you act, resulting in what you do or don’t achieve (The Attitude Cycle). Your self-esteem affects everything you do. It reflects the “you” to everyone you come into contact with. This is what forms your attitude towards yourself and others.
Self-esteem is both conscious and unconscious. It is an ongoing self-evaluation, leading to a belief about what you can and cannot do.
Low Self Esteem
Do you remember as a child doing something wrong and being punished for it? As the memory comes back to you, you might even recall the feelings you experienced. You might even remember saying to yourself – “I was wrong. I am bad. I am a failure.” You may have even thought, “My parents don’t love me anymore,” and as a result, you conclude you are unworthy.
Perception is reality.
If you felt unworthy as a child, as you matured into adulthood, it’s possible the feelings of inadequacy and insecurity became your dominant thoughts resulting in low self-esteem. These feelings can cause you to experience a fear of failure, fear of rejection, or even a fear of success.
Low self-esteem is generally caused by negative emotional responses primarily from the experiences you had in your childhood. If you were constantly criticized by your parents, other adults, or your peers, it is likely you formed a low opinion of yourself. Your environment, like the media and society, can also cause feelings of inferiority, leading you to experience low self-esteem. You might feel you have to live up to what the media portrays as the “ideal” person or the “ideal shape” and feel inadequate when you don’t.
If these negative feelings are constantly reinforced by negative belief patterns, they become habit forming, and low self-esteem will result.
Your self-esteem can change, sometimes daily, depending on what you are experiencing or how you are feeling. You may feel confident in one environment and, an hour later, move into a different environment and your feelings of self will change.
Regardless of what you think, just like the Attitude Cycle, the cycle repeats itself unless you change your thinking.
If you have low self-esteem, chances are, you go through the motions, won’t even try, or simply give up. By not trying and giving up, you will learn to fail more often than you learn to succeed. This reduces your levels of self-confidence and self-esteem. This is a continuous feedback loop that reinforces the belief you have in yourself that you are a failure.
High Self Esteem
Having high self-esteem means you have a positive sense of your inherent worth as a person. If you have high self-esteem, you are more likely to persist and overcome any challenges towards achieving your vision and reaching your goals.
If you persist, you will learn to succeed more often than fail, the result being, you gain more self-confidence and increase your self-worth.
High self-esteem manifests itself as having a great deal of self-confidence and developing a high sense of self-worth and self-respect.
Developing a high self-esteem can be learned, but it does not happen overnight. The key to improving your self-esteem is how willing you are to take responsibility for your feelings, thoughts, desires, abilities, and interests and to focus on and accept your overall strengths.
Every time you are tempted to give up or go off track, you must fight the desire to revert to bad habits. Use your WHY, your vision, and your goals to keep the fire burning within. Be willing to fight for your dreams.
One way you undermine your self-esteem is to attach too much importance to getting things perfect. If you allow yourself to make mistakes, you are less likely to make them because they become less important. When they become less important, it reduces your anxiety and increases your confidence levels.
Mistakes give you the opportunity to learn something new.
Have you ever noticed the inner voice inside you? You know the one; it’s a real chatterbox. It’s the way you talk to yourself.
How you talk to yourself affects possible outcomes. Here are examples of negative self-talk.
- “I’m never going to get into university. I’m not smart enough.”
- “I could never stand up in front of people and make a speech.”
- “I’m useless at math.”
- “No point me entering the competition. I never win anything.”
- “I’m such a clumsy person.”
- “I lose weight, but I can’t seem to keep it off.”
- “I’m hopeless at saving money.”
The problem with talking to yourself like this is that the subconscious mind doesn’t know the difference between the statement like “I’m terrible at public speaking” and “I’m a fantastic speaker.” It accepts what you tell it.
If you have been programmed to believe you aren’t smart enough, or you are clumsy or useless at math, guess what? Your subconscious mind believes it! It accepts everything you say according to your beliefs.
Sometimes, you might joke to yourself and say, “stupid me.” The problem is, your subconscious mind has no sense of humor. It can’t distinguish if you were joking – it only hears the words “stupid me.”
Imagine you are watching a horror movie. As the scenes play out in front of you – you become frightened. Your stress hormones pump through your body and you are on the edge of your seat to the end. It’s as if you are living the horror for real.
But it’s only a movie. You know it’s fake. They are only actors, but you are still scared. Your body reacts as if it were real. It’s the same with your subconscious mind. It reacts to how you talk to yourself as if it were real.
It’s important to identify where your self-talk comes from.
The reason you concentrate on negative self-talk, rather than positive self-talk, has to do with the negative programming you received in your formative years. When you think negatively, your confidence levels are lowered; therefore, your mood and outlook becomes negative.
The conditioning you received in your formative years and the people around you have mostly determined how you talk to yourself. By the time you are five to seven years old, most of your ideas of life are created. As you grow older, your parents, teachers, and friends have even more influence on your life.
Consider some of the things your well-meaning and loving parents, teachers, and friends might have said to you.
- “Your room is always a mess.”
- “Can’t you do anything right?”
- “Why do you have to be so clumsy?”
- “You are just like your mother (or father).”
- “You talk too much. You never listen.”
- “You’ll never amount to anything.”
- “You’re hopeless around the house.”
- “Stop daydreaming – you’ll never be rich.”
- “What will the neighbors think?”
- “You won’t get a good job when you grow up because you don’t study.”
- “By the time you are sixteen, you will be pregnant the way you’re going.”
At school, you learn how to spell, construct sentences, learn history and mathematics, but no one teaches you the effects of positive and negative thinking. Your parents, teachers, and friends learned to think from their parents and friends. If they were taught that they were stupid, dumb, lazy, clumsy, not good enough, they probably passed that thinking onto you.
So, the thoughts and words of the significant people in your life have conditioned you into thinking a certain way. If the conditioning you received was predominantly negative, then unsurprisingly, you talk to yourself the same way. Therefore, as an adult, you are often living out the limiting beliefs you learnt growing up.
You can’t change who the significant people in your life were growing up, but you can change who you associate with as an adult.
Look at the people in your life. Do they give you positive messages or negative messages? The people in your life usually mirror the beliefs you have about yourself. People constantly criticized in their life will criticize others. They have been programmed that way.
Your thoughts are programmed just like a computer. Consider how this affects your levels of success.
To Improve your self-esteem
- Let go of the past
- forgive yourself and your upbringing
- Learn to love yourself
- Treat yourself as your own best friend
- Use positive affirmations to change your self-talk
Your attitude ties directly to your inner voice. What your attitude does is determine your relative degrees of success and failure. Firstly, you make your attitude then your attitude will make or break you. Your attitude and how you choose to handle adversity, failure and challenges, will either make you or break you.
Everyone hits brick walls in their life. When faced with adversity, you can either decide to climb the wall, tunnel under the wall, break through the wall or sit there and blame your upbringing as the reason for staying where you are. You have a choice; either let the past define you where you continue to reside with low self-esteem and a negative attitude or create a positive new future for yourself.
On a Final Note
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