Everything in your personal and professional life is controlled by your beliefs. If you believe life is a battle, it will affect every phase of your life. If you believe you are unable to initiate changes needed in your company, it will affect your career growth and the level of success you attain.
So, what is a belief? It is a feeling of absolute certainty. You have developed beliefs throughout your life, often without even realizing it. You can also take on the beliefs of others who have influenced you in your personal life and career. Have you ever heard yourself saying, “Oh no, I sound just like my mother or father?” Or “I can’t believe I just sounded like my boss, who I didn’t like!”
If life is whatever you decide to believe about it, you must be conscious about your current belief system. In the future you will experience the beliefs that you choose to focus on. These beliefs will help you attain greater levels of success in your career or sabotage your ability to grow. They can also limit the success of people you supervise, who may unconsciously embrace your beliefs.
There is a quote I want to share by an unknown author “You don’t believe what you see, you rather see what you have already decided to believe.”
This describes the Universal Law of Belief. If you don’t 100% believe that something can become a part of your reality, no matter how desperately you may want something, it won’t happen. Life doesn’t automatically provide you with what you want but will provide you with what you intend to achieve especially if those intention are tied to a strong emotion. Your intentions can occur at both unconscious and conscious levels of awareness.
Your belief system needs to continually evolve because you are dealing with more information and more changes, than at any other time in history. According to LinkedIn, human knowledge is doubling every 12 hours, where the doubling rate fifty years ago was 25 years. During an interview on 60 minutes, artificial intelligence expert and venture capitalist Kai-Fu Lee predicted that 40% of the world’s jobs will be replaced by robots in the next 15 to 25 years. Change is automatic but your progress is not. What beliefs do you have that are outdated, ineffective, and could be limiting your success?
Your beliefs are the way you interpret events or life experiences in both your personal and business lives. Let’s take the example of two executives who are dealing with the lack of engagement with their employees. If you believe Millennials and Gen Z (who make up the majority of the workforce) are entitled job hoopers, this conditioned belief system would limit your ability to deal effectively with the lack of engagement issue you are facing. There would be a tendency to blame the employees for this problem.
On the other hand, if you believed your company embraces the priorities most valued by Millennials and Gen Z and can offer career advancement, this conditioned belief system would support your efforts to initiate changes to improve employee engagement. These two examples prove that our beliefs consistently determine how we react as leaders.
Have you ever found it difficult to convince someone you supervise to consider your perspective? It could be that they have already developed a strong alternate belief about the information you are providing. If emotion is associated with their belief, they will reject your perspective no matter how logical, because it is not aligned with their conditioned patterns of believing.
What about your own self-limiting beliefs? They can impact how you identify yourself and can limit opportunities, behaviors, and actions, often at an unconscious level of awareness. Your identity is the most powerful force that impacts every thought, emotion, and beliefs in your life. For example, if you’ve been accused of being a procrastinator, after a few times you don’t want to feel bad, so you accept the fact that you are a procrastinator. You may not achieve your goals, but you become comfortable with your identity and so do your employees.
If you discover your current belief patterns are working against you, identify something you value more than your beliefs. If there is something that you believe you can’t do (for whatever reason) but you know if you did it, you’d be more successful, you must get yourself to do it and not hesitate. Embrace a stretching philosophy for both you and the individuals you supervise and you will become a stronger leader and enjoy consistent growth in your career.
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