The Power of the Beginner's Mind
How do you feel about confidence? Is it something that you naturally have, something you “earn” through experience, or something that’s generally lacking in your life?
Many of us think of confidence as coming from mastery of something, and we automatically think less-than-confident thoughts when we approach some new challenge. We fear failure, we fear looking like fools, we fear success, we fear not being able to get it right...
It might surprise you that having a beginner’s mind can increase your confidence! It can feel counter-intuitive, but it’s actually brilliant.
When you think about a beginner, what do you picture in your mind? Likely it’s someone who is open to learning, eager to learn, and has the desire to learn.
A beginner has no confidence in their abilities relating to the skill they are learning, but they DO have confidence in their ability to learn!
A beginner is under no illusions that (s)he is anything but a beginner who lacks knowledge and skill. There might be a bit of ego (many people don’t want to look like beginners), but if you are able to embrace the newness of what you’re doing, and just have fun with it, your ego won’t be bruised the first time you mess up, or the seventeenth time, because it’s a normal and expected part of the process.
A beginner doesn’t expect to master a skill the first time out. A beginner expects that mastery requires time, effort and repetition, and that the whole process will be something akin to two steps forward and one step back - and it can still be a whole heck of a lot of fun!
Nobody expects a beginner to be a master, and this takes away the fear of "looking foolish." In reality, people will give you lots of credit for having the guts to try!
All the confidence you need to take on even the biggest and most challenging goal comes more easily if you cultivate the beginner’s mindset. You can approach anything knowing that you are clever and creative! After all, you once knew absolutely nothing about everything you now do so well.
So soothe your mind by allowing yourself to be a beginner. Come into your power as a lifelong learner. Embrace the fun challenge of the newness of it all! Even if you consider yourself a master at something, there will always be more to learn so never stop learning.
Now that you can see the power of having a beginner’s mindset, what goals have you been procrastinating on because you fear looking foolish? What dreams are on hold because you fear you might fail? Reframe them now, by looking at them from a beginner’s point of view.
It helps to mentally rehearse success. This lets your mind reverse-engineer the process, going from master to beginner so you can identify the steps necessary to achieve mastery. It gives you a compelling mental image/feeling to aim for. Use your favorite MindPT session... add your own images of your most cherished goals and your own power statemetns that will become self-fulfilling prophecies. Watch for 5-10 minutes a day to keep your goals "top of mind" and then, with a beginner's happy and enthusiastic attitude that isn't afraid to get a bruise or two (and can laugh off goof-ups), GO FOR IT.
TRUST that you will figure it out as you go… of course the key being, GO. Start. It’s okay to make mistakes because mistakes accelerate learning.
So go out there, beginner. Fresh eyes, fresh mind, fresh start!
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