Changing Perspective – Part 2
Written by Sarah Yetkiner • “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein
Whenever I talk to people who have achieved success in areas I want to be successful in, I usually find that, even though there is lots of common ground in the way we each view and approach life, there are certain key differences between their perspective and my own. Often it’s these differences in perspective that have helped them achieve their success and this is one of the reasons I’m so passionate about being open to seeing the world differently and learning more about how other people see the world and approach their goals.Last week I explored the idea that a change in perspective, through building, learning and doing more, could help lead to financial success and one twitter follower asked for some tips on how to get started. I can sum up my own experiences over the past 14 years in three words: Vision, Proof and Persistence but I couldn’t explain them adequately in 144 characters, so hopefully this post will help:Vision:When it comes to goal setting you have to have a vision of what it is you are trying to achieve and what your motivator (the reason why you want to achieve your goal) is. Part of changing your perspective is allowing yourself to envision goals that are bigger and bolder than you have set before. Walt Disney once said “if you can dream it, you can do it” and I think he was absolutely right. Having grown up in a country with a deeply ingrained class system, I had very limiting beliefs about where I “belonged” in the social hierarchy and what it was “appropriate” for me to aspire to. As I learned more about money, wealth and the principles and psychology behind building financial success, I had to abandon a lot of the ideas that I’d been raised with in order to absorb the new concepts and new opportunities I was learning about. The fact that I already had a reputation in my family for being a little impulsive didn’t help; they saw (and still see) a lot of the new concepts I was exploring as just another example of my “impractical” approach to life. I love my family dearly but I know the chances of them ever truly understanding or believing in what I’m working towards until I get there is very small. When you start to change your perspective it’s important to surround yourself with people who understand and support your vision because this helps reinforce and strengthen your new perspectives, boosts your motivation and increases your chances of success.Strategy:Set SMART goals that are big and bold. Surround yourself with people who support and believe in your vision. Don’t take it personally if people you care about don’t totally understand/support what you’re trying to achieve. They will when you get there!Proof:In life we find what we look for and this can be very powerful when it comes to changing perspective. Have you ever had the experience where you’re looking for a new car and as soon as you find a model you like you suddenly notice them all around you? Our brain is conditioned to look for patterns and similarities and this is just as true for new thought patterns as it is for new vehicles. When we change perspective, we have to find evidence to support our new viewpoint and also find evidence that challenges our old perspective. One of the most powerful strategies I’ve found when it comes to taking on a new perspective is to actively look for reasons that my old viewpoint was flawed. It can be a little uncomfortable (after all, who really likes to be faced with a pile of evidence that they’re “wrong”?) but it’s also a great exercise for helping you deal with naysayers because it leaves you with a strong sense of why your new perspective will better serve you and a stack of reasons why their viewpoint might also be flawed!!Strategy:Find evidence that your new perspective is serving your goals (e.g.: people who have achieved what you’re working towards; evidence of how your life has/will improve as a result of your new perspective). Reinforce this positive information by finding evidence that your old perspective no longer serves to benefit you (e.g.: five years from now where will you be if you don’t make a change?). Write everything down – this not only helps lock the information into your subconscious, it’s also a great thing to re-read if you start to question your choices.Persistence:It takes 28 days to create a habit. Building a new perspective is no different than creating a new fitness habit. The first few days will be tough, then it will get easier, then your initial enthusiasm will wane, things will crop up that tempt you to go back to your old ways and you’ll really have to dig in to maintain your momentum and power through the first month. Once you’re past the 4 week mark, it will get easier and more natural and, before you know it, your new perspective will feel like second nature. The first 28 days are crucially important when it comes to any goal so do whatever you can to set yourself up for success.Strategy:Remind yourself at the beginning and end of each day why this new perspective will benefit you. Revisit the evidence you found to support your new viewpoint and look for more. If you find yourself questioning what you’re doing or doubting yourself; take it as evidence that change is taking place – remember there’s no comfort in a growth zone (and no growth in a comfort zone!). Spend time with like-minded people who support you and share your insights and celebrate your successes with them. It makes the process a LOT easier!I think Einstein had it right with his definition of insanity. If you’re not satisfied with your results, how might changing perspective help you to find a new financial journey?