Many of us think that we’re the same people that we were when we left college or grad school. Yet many things have happened since then. We’ve learned a great deal, developed new skills, played different roles, and become responsible for more people. In short, we’ve evolved. but if we don’t consciously acknowledge this shift, we may hold on to attitudes, behaviors, and assumptions that will keep us from taking the next step.
For example, carrying around a mentality of scarcity may have been appropriate when you were just getting started. But now that you’re a leader, not reaching for the check at a business meal, or wearing bargain basement clothing likely will not help you get to the next level. Similarly, the level of attention to detail that allowed you to do excellent work in your first job will not help you as you move up.
Until you ceased to be a full-time student, life was like an escalator. If you followed the rules and did what was expected, you’d be taken to the next level. You almost didn’t have to think about anything. Your clothes changed because you grew. Your old toys were likewise put or given away because you grew and changed. Your skills grew as assignments became tougher. If you didn’t do it on your own, parents and teachers provided scaffolding to help you.
As adults, it’s up to each of us to make sure that every aspect of our lives is keeping up with our intentions. We need to periodically review our attitudes and beliefs to see if they’re still true, and also if they’re appropriate and will help us to take that next step. This is even more important as technology changes the way work is done.
This is important because our attitudes and beliefs inform our behaviors. If you are trying to change a behavior because you think you need to in order to advance your career or your quality of life, you may find it hard to do if you don’t understand the underlying belief or attitude that triggers the behavior.
How do you do it? You can start be creating two lists - one containing beliefs that you have about yourself. You should list the things that you are good at and the things that you’re not good at. You should also list assumptions that you make about the world. Take at least a week to work on these lists, because more items will come to you even after you think they’re complete. You should then look at each item on the two lists and ask yourself two questions. First is it true? Second, will this belief help you to reach your goals?
You may be surprised how many items you unquestioningly accepted can be retired, like old toys, to the attic. They may have served you well for a time, but like old toys, you don’t need them right now.
QUESTION: How do you know when attitudes and beliefs need to be questioned?==================================================================
Leadership/Career Coach Kris Ishibashi works with leaders to bring together their skills, their authentic selves, and their intentions to inspire their organizations to superior performance. Click here to set up a complimentary consultation.