The 'When...Then' Mindset (What it is & Why You Need To Change It)
If you don't know what the "When..Then Mindset" is, it's what a lot of us do. Mostly people that are struggling to achieve their dreams because they are waiting for the 'right time'. We tell ourselves "When this happens, then I will be able to do this". I have been victim to this mindset myself and I know a lot of other people have. We need to start understanding that this is the wrong mentality to have if you want to start moving forward and achieving your dreams.
We are always waiting for the right time, we think we need to achieve something first in order for us to feel ready to take the steps to fulfill our dreams. Or worse, we are waiting for something to be handed to us until we are ready to go. But really what we are doing is giving ourselves excuses and setting up roadblocks for ourselves. Why do we self sabotage in this way?
We Are Afraid
We like to think that we will actually make that step one day but only if the right time comes or we create the right circumstance. We are actually stopping ourselves from making that first move because we are afraid. There is something there stopping us from doing what we dream of. Maybe it seems too hard, or we worry what people will think or we just can't get motivated and we don't want to think about it yet. This is a totally normal feeling and it's a good thing to be scared of our dreams, it shows us they mean something. But they need to be achievable, and as well as that we need to want to start working towards them, then what's the point of having those goals in the first place? We wouldn't achieve much if we didn't take risks. We actually have to take risks to make a difference. We need to stop putting them off and waiting for what we think is the right time.
What is the Worst Thing That Can Happen?
You need to ask yourself, "What is the worst thing that can happen?" and a lot of the time, it isn't really that bad. So you finally quit smoking, what is so bad about that? Yes, it is hard work if you are trying to quit a bad habit but really even if you go one day without a cigarette, you are on your way to a better future, maybe next time you can try two days, then three. A lot of the time, if you do "fail" at your goal you will only end up at the place you started. That's where you are now, so it can't be that bad, can it?
And remember, each time you fail or make a mistake you are learning something. Use it as a lesson. You can then take this lesson forward, maybe reevaluate your dreams or just give them another go with the new knowledge you have.
Stop Saying You Will Start Monday
If you want to start losing weight, don't put it off. Don't tell yourself you will start tomorrow or Monday. That gives you an excuse to put it off in the future. If, for example, you fall off the wagon for a second and eat an entire cake, you will then allow yourself to say "Oh well, I will start again Monday." and then you will go and sabotage your hard work even more before you get back on it again. Or you have gone so long veering away from your goal you forget to start up again completely. Once you finish that last piece of cake, put it behind you instantly. From the moment you take the last mouthful, start eating healthy again. One small mistake won't set you back but a whole week of them might. With this mindset, you will never achieve your goals. As soon as the idea pops into your head, START. Right that second, just get on with it. Don't start thinking about the big picture, just focus on that day and take each day as it comes. Then soon enough a week will have a passed then a month and you will realize how far you have got. You will then be so proud of yourself, and that is one of the best feelings in the world.
The Right Time Never Comes
But at the end of the day, we will never be ready, we will never feel 100% confident going forward. There never is a right time. We just have to get over our mental block and just do it. I wish there were more of a profound way to say it but like Nike, it is as simple as 'Just Do It'.
If I had waited until I was ready to start this blog then I never would have. I did put it off for a while because I wanted to put away some time to get on with it, I wanted to build an audience on Instagram, I wanted to learn to write better. But I have learned that I could only put the time away to do it whilst I was actually working on it. I needed to build an audience of people that wanted to read my blog, not people who just wanted to look at my Instagram feed. And the only way I could get better at writing was by doing it. I know I have a long way to go but I am persuing my goals and working towards making my dreams come true. Even if I am taking baby steps. But these baby steps mean I am moving forward and that's what you have to do as well.
So the big lesson is that it's ok to be scared but you just have to put that behind you and start pushing forward. Stop listening to the excuses you are giving yourself and just do it. If you fail, so what? Dust yourself off and try again.