Have you ever calculated the amount of time and money you have invested in an undergraduate degree, an MBA, and countless webinars? Yet you still feel you’re no closer to obtaining your cherished career and life goals?
In today’s highly competitive business climate, traditional education falls short in equipping high achievers to win at work and succeed in life.
You need more than education and experience to succeed in business. You need Mental Toughness, a strong and disciplined mind. Mental Toughness helps get you through critical moments of performance amidst the rapid changes and ambiguities creating today’s uncertain business environment.
Steve Bergholtz, senior facilities consultant for Danvers, MA-based AmSan Division of Interline Brands, sums it up: “Regardless of what is going on today in the world, you must make the decision not to yield to its pressure. The only control you have is how you respond to the situation or challenge. Being mentally tough enables me to be more creative in my approach to business. It gives me the competitive edge to outperform my competitors both professionally and monetarily.”
What Mental Toughness Is
Mental Toughness is an inner strength developed in every experience to help you improve your own ability to ‘level the playing field’ in business. It is an emotional toughness enabling you to remain emotionally stable while continuing to make rational decisions under pressure. It is the ‘true grit’ that helps you work through difficult situations, keeping your purpose always in mind. Grit means strength of character, not giving up, and the ability to persevere until a satisfactory resolution has been reached.
Mental Toughness Without Arrogance
Mental toughness does not mean becoming a bully or feeling the need to display unruly, arrogant behaviors toward someone or something in order to convince others of your mental superiority.
What it does mean is that you have trained and developed your inner resilience as a result of your increased determination to succeed. You resolve to be flexible when necessary, and center your fortification to such a degree that you’re able to deal with whatever comes your way. Mental toughness helps you easily outperform ordinary standards and become optimally effective and productive in both your personal and professional life.
The Seven Success Strategies for Mental Toughness They Don’t Teach You In Business School shared here will give you the ability to withstand the unexpected and diverse challenges of business, as well as to weather the personal and professional disappointments often encountered when working in a stressful environment.
- Control your emotional response to all challenges. At the first sign of pressure, immediately stop, take a few deep breaths, and be still in both mind and action. Then ask yourself, “Am I allowing events or circumstances to control my emotional response?” With a strong, disciplined mind, you become self-directed and self-reliant. Self-manage your thinking and emotions and make your own decisions rather than being controlled by the business environment, the opinion of others, or momentary situations.
- Be Self-discipline. Companies like Google, YouTube, Amazon, and eBay did not spin out from big companies. They sprang from individuals who were self-motivated, remained disciplined in their dedication to innovation, and had an inquisitive mind. This deep strength means you are your own person responsible for your own success or failure. Self-discipline means responding moment by moment to what you are thinking rather than feeling.
- Extraordinary Power of Visualization. Picture in your mind what you want for yourself and then open yourself to receive anything that might lead you to this wonderful goal. Picture in your mind what you want for yourself and then open yourself to receive anything that might lead you to this wonderful goal. Before I speak to a large audience, I see myself giving the talk. Consider these three examples. Napoleon, for example, “practiced” soldiering in his imagination for many years before he ever went on an actual battlefield. Concert pianists will first hum and practice a composition in their mind before ever playing it. Architects will imagine their structural feat before drafting it on paper.
- Hear the words of Shunryu Suzuki, “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.” There’s a trap that many smart, ambitious professionals fall into as their careers move forward. It’s seldom discussed yet can turn a productive and fulfilling career into a mediocre one. And ironically, the more experienced you become, the greater your chances of getting derailed by it. The trap is to become an expert. In business being an expert is considered a mark of distinction, a title that promises consistent and thoughtful excellence. But the truth is many experts establish a routine that has worked for them early in their careers and then never deviate from it. They become ingrained in seeing things and doing things a certain way and stop considering any other way. They effectively switch off the probing, creative minds that launched their careers and instead operate on autopilot. Don’t let this happen to you. It blinds you from the nuanced details of each new challenge and from creating the very best solutions possible.
- Be flexible. Flexibility is a learned mental skill. In today’s dynamic world, your effectiveness as a professional depends on your readiness to adjust quickly to the moments of need or opportunity, adversity, and change. Instead of being a rigid thinker of staying with what you feel comfortable with and what has worked in the past, you can approach these uncertainties by thinking more creatively and being flexible in your thinking. Be aggressively curious, ask questions, and be open to alternatives.
- Be inner-directed. Act like an inner-directed independent thinker who uses his whole brain to lead competently, intentionally and decisively through the changing business climate.
- Self-awareness is a mind-set to finding your best self. The more you like yourself, know your core strengths, understand the values that are important to you, know how your moral compass drives you toward success and what influences your failures, the more accurate perception you possess of the real “you” and your abilities. Copyright 2015 JenniferTouma.com Mindscapemind Mindscape