I'm following on from the article I shared last week, where I was talking about the words, I could never, and how people use them as an excuse.
Some people use them because they just don't want to do something, but other people use them as an excuse to not follow their dreams.
And that's what we went through last week…
We went through the people who were using the words, I could never, to stop themselves having to try to do something that they actually really, really wanted.
I gave you a visual exercise which involved a blanket bundle of all the real obstacles getting in between you and your dreams.
We laid down the heavy, cumbersome bundle that you are carrying around with you, and opened it up, then took those reasons out one by one and looked at them.
If you took the time to do this, you would have found things like this, wrapped up in your I-could-never-do-that-blanket:
I don’t have time
I’m a single mum – it’s all too hard
I’m not sure where to start
I don’t know what to do
I’m not good enough
Everyone will laugh at me
I’m not tech-savvy
I don’t know how to sell
I don’t know how to get clients
My friends won’t like me anymore
These things are the obstacles – both real, and mindset, that are currently getting in your way of achieving your dream goal.
Well, today, I want to start with the one that I didn't mention above, and that you probably aren't aware of.
I want to start with this one, because no matter how hard you work at the other obstacles, if this one is still in place you will be going around in circles, marching on the spot, and in some cases going backwards.
I want to talk to you about Cognitive Dissonance.
So firstly, what is Cognitive Dissonance?
Well, Wikipedia says this:
In the field of psychology, cognitive dissonance occurs when a person holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values, and experiences psychological stress because of that.
SO in other words, if you currently believe one thing, and you are also hanging onto a second belief that contradicts the first, your brain has a meltdown.
And then these sorts of things start to happen:
You find yourself unmotivated
You have trouble getting out of bed
You are confused about what you should be doing
You feel like you are going backwards
You feel like you're trying to run through mud
Your head feels stuffed of cotton wool (my personal favourite)
You self sabotage your efforts
Now some of you are probably nodding your head thinking, ‘I know how that feels.’
SO the question is…what do you do about it?
Do you give up on your dreams because they don’t align with your current belief?
Of course not.
There would be no growth without some cognitive dissonance.
The trick is to narrow the gap between your A, and your B.
So what do I mean by this?
Okay, so let’s say that you currently have had a couple of clients in your business, and your dream/big goal/Point B is a 7-figure business…
Well, you can see how that might throw a spanner in the works and cause some Cognitive Dissonance.
It's near impossible for your brain to grasp the possibility of earning over a million dollars a year when you have so far only managed to work with a handful of clients!!!
I have a saying about growth that I want to share with you…
Sometimes you have to look at the horizon and sometimes you have to look at your feet.
It’s important to keep an eye on the horizon to make sure that you are heading towards your big goal, but when you get into overwhelm about that goal, it’s time to switch your attention to your feet, and more importantly, to the steps you need to take.
So just as in when we are working out our marketing offer, we would work out the stepping stones to get our client from A to B, you must do the same here, for yourself, to overcome your Cognitive Dissonance.
Instead of steering for a 7 figure business, let’s make our first stepping stone something that your brain can digest as being possible.
So say, getting 10 clients.
Is getting 10 clients still taking you to your 7-figure goal?
Of course, it is. But it is doing it in such a way that you can believe.
It’s the difference between eating a hamburger bite by bite, and trying to stuff the whole thing into your mouth at once. If you do that latter you will choke for sure.
So I want you right now, to write down a goal that, while still taking you in the right direction, feels achievable. It needs to be a little bit scary, but not too scary.
Now ask yourself if you believe that that is achievable. If it is, then keep going.
If not, hold that as a stepping stone you are working towards, and come back one more step.
Okay, so now that we have that first stepping stone, we can go back to our blanket and look at all the other things that are there acting as obstacles in your way to getting to your new, more manageable goal.
Now, don’t for a second think I am saying you can’t have your big goal…
But, you are going to have it stepping stone by stepping stone.
Don’t lose sight of it, but also don’t try to go faster than your brain can believe.