I've given over 80 talks about mindset and goal achievement in the last 12 months to groups ranging from 20 to 2000 coming from all walks of life and practically every nation on the planet.
Whenever I begin one of my talks I always lay out the three 'big myths' about achieving your goals and why falling for them can cost you not only your goals but your passion and your happiness too.
In a later post I'll cover the other 2 myths but today I wanted to cover the myth of positive thinking as I believe that this is probably the most pervasive and negatively impactful myth around achievement and success that most people fall for.
Now, don't get me wrong; I'm a big positive thinker myself focusing upon the possible rather than the impossible, on the can rather than the can't and on the power, possibility and promise of a situation rather than the drain, strain and lack of gain that most people seem to focus on.
But that doesn't mean that I believe positive thinking creates positive results in and of itself.
You see, depite what most people think, positive thinking has very little power to create the end-result you're most looking for whether that's earning more money, getting a better job, travelling the world or anything else that you may hold as being important to you.
Now, if you've read around mindset and goal achievement very much then you'll probably disagree with me on this. I don't blame you, this is how you've been trained to think.
So let's be scientific about this shall we?
Go and sit in the middle of a very busy highway. The busiest you can find.
Put a massive smile on your face and think happy, positive thoughts as the traffic whizzes by you at 70 miles an hour. You feel pretty good, right?
But just how long do you think your positive thinking will keep you from harms way?
Walk out in to your garden and smile and say over and over "There's no weeds, there's no weeds, there's no weeds"
Follow this little ritual on a daily basis for six months or even a year, maintaining a positive attitude to your garden.
Check out your garden at the end of six months and record the result.
So look, positive thinking isn't the be all and end all of getting what you want.
Yes, it's an important part (after all, negativity certainly doesn't help ANYTHING) but positivity by itself only creates what I call 'Happy Fool Syndrome' where you maintain a smile despite whatever else is going on in your life. Sure, it's a better approach than going through life with a frown but it definitely won't guarantee your success in anything.
You see, positivity is only valuable to the degree that it gets you to take positive action.
That's critcially important so I'll say it again just to let it sink in.
Positivity is only valuable to the degree that it gets you to take positive action.
If you maintain a smile but don't DO the things that are PROVEN to create success then success simply won't come. It can't!
Only action changes anything, positive thinking doesn't.
So here's a little experiment I want you t try out for the next 30 days ok?
Stop judging your probability for success based upon how positive you're thinking and start judging it only on the actions you took toward making the goal happen; no matter how small.
Eating right, drinking right, cutting back on toxic load, getting enough sleep, exercising and controling your stress are all positive actions that will contribute to positive results in your health, energy and mindset.
Saving 10% of your income, paying yourself first, investing in learning new skills and using those you already have to their maximum are all positive actions that will see your income, your savings and your net worth increase.
Small actions, but they soon add up.
Thinking positively, on the other hand changes nothing, other than how you FEEL about things. (This IS important, of course, but not as much as most people think)
By all means, maintain a sunny, cheery disposition and a 'can do' attitude to life. I'm not knocking it, but make EVERY day a day where you took action on that positivity and things will change more than you'd ever believe.
Truth, joy and love
P.S - My personal mentors Bob Proctor and Joe Vitale of 'The Secret' both agree with me on this. They believe 100% in maintaining a positive mindset but also recognise that only action has the power to bring about change.
That's why I wrote The MAGIC Hundred. I was fed up of being positive but achieving little....