Over drinks with a friend recently, we were talking about how our city, Columbus, Ohio, has incredible potential.
It’s got so much going for it as is. But then he said something intriguing.
“Our best history [as a city] is still in front of us.”
That’s a powerful and transformative thing to believe, and it works on an individual level, too.
I talk with a lot of clients who feel stuck, whether that be in a job they don’t like, a relationship that feels strained, or a life phase that doesn’t bring joy. Often, there’s a lack of hope.
My initial challenge is to get them to believe about themselves what my friend believes about Columbus—that, despite their current circumstances, the best is yet to come. (A later challenge is to get them to see the learning opportunities in that difficult circumstance.)
A character at play here is something called growth mindset, the view that our abilities can be developed with effort and dedication. Understanding that we already have the tools to create change is crucial to progress.
If you believe the best is yet to come AND that you can better yourself through learning and hard work, big things can happen.
Here’s what I mean.
You become more likely to take risks.
Pairing hope with optimism often makes us more likely to take chances. We can of course acknowledge the possibility of failure, while still knowing the risk is worth it. If we believe that joy and opportunity are right around the corner, why not swing for the fences?
You think less about what could have been.
Pursuing those risks often leads to less “I could have been _______” statements of regret. Say you go for that promotion. Even if it doesn’t pan out, you won’t have that nagging what if feeling. And if you really embody the best-is-yet-to-come mindset, you know another opportunity is right around the corner.
You find lessons (not competition or jealousy) in the success of others.
Cheering for others becomes a whole lot easier when we have confidence in our own possibility for success. It also opens up the idea of finding inspiration in their prosperity. We can glean insight from how they triumphed and apply it to our own journey, without feeling jealous or insecure.
If you feel the best is yet to come but you aren’t sure what your best looks like, I invite you to join me for a special Your Life. Your Terms. eight-week small group coaching program. We’ll meet over video chat once each week to walk through topics like controlling your inner control freak and overcoming self-doubt. It starts on Oct. 21, and you can save your spot (they’re limited!) here. I can’t wait.
I’ll leave you with this: It’s of course possible to be grateful for and content with your current circumstances while still believing the best is yet to come. Aspiration and gratitude are not mutually exclusive. Embody both, and see what’s possible.
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