What's my mindset and how does it affect me?
Looking at your mindset can feel like another thing to attend to. The act of nurturing it can swiftly shift from self-care to another thing to beat ourselves up over. We decide we’re stressed because we have a bad mindset and that if we spent more time on it we wouldn’t be so anxious or overwhelmed.
There is nothing wrong with your current mindset. You are perfect just as you are. You get stressed because you are human. You get anxious, again, because you are human. Your mindset is as original and unique as you are.
A Mindset is defined as “the established set of attitudes held by someone”. These established attitudes help us navigate the world. They help us succeed at work, connect with people, discern and make decisions every moment of everyday.
These established attitudes run deep, so when we encounter a person or situation that challenges them it can be stressful. Practically this could be someone saying our work is not good enough, an argument with a friend or partner that comes out of nowhere or a sudden feeling that we’re not doing what we want to do with our lives.
Combine these experiences with lives full of too much information, too much work and not enough time or sleep and it’s no wonder we get brain-fog and feel stressed out. Despite all this, the wonderful thing about our mindset is that it evolves all the time. With every challenge we encounter, we level it up.
If we can learn to slow down and to stay curious in these challenging moments, we can push out the boundaries of those deeply held attitudes and beliefs without getting overwhelmed.
Expanding these boundaries makes us more creative, gives us fresh perspective and helps us problem solve faster and better.
Our new course Mindset SOS has four super-effective tools to help you think clearly when you feel like a hot mess.
One of these is The Reboot : Retro-walking.
Retro-walking means walking backwards. It’s a neurobic activity which also taps into ancient meditation principles.
What does neurobic mean?
Neurobic is essentially aerobics for your brain. Neurobic activities stimulate your brain into making connections and producing growth factors called neurotrophins. Without getting too scientific, this means your brain creates more connections. The more connections your brain forms, the more ideas and possibilities your brain can access. This means more problem solving solutions. It can also improve your memory.
Walking is a key part of meditation practices and walking meditation is described as a “simple and universal practice for developing calm, connectedness, and embodied awareness.”
So when we bring together the presence and calming qualities of meditative walking with the neurobic qualities of walking backwards, retro-walking becomes a great tool to reset our mindsets even when we’re at our most stressed.
How to do it:
Find an area clear of obstacles that you feel safe to walk back in. You do not need to go far, what’s important is to take the steps slowly and purposefully. Take about 5-10 steps.
If you feel unstable, stop. You might be moving too quickly so try slowing down even more.
When you are ready, turn and walk backwards in the other direction. Again, take 5-10 steps.
Things to check:
For an activity to qualify as neurobic it must focus your attention, engage your senses in a new way and change a routine activity so :
Take your time. We’re always in a rush to get to the next thing but for the calming effects to kick in we need to give our brains a chance to slow down
Engage your senses. Can you feel the ground under your feet? What can you hear? Does anything new or different catch your eye? What can you smell?
Keep breathing. Keeping a slow even breath will help your brain slow down.
Importantly: it’s totally fine if this exercise feels really stupid.
Remember a mindset is collection of beliefs . Walking backwards is probably going to bump right up against them. Just sit your logical mind on the sofa and tell it you’ll be back in a minute.
Want to explore further?
If you are ready to level up your mindset, why not try our new Mindset SOS course? From staying present to boosting your imagination we’ve got it covered with our 4 super-effective exercises and our ultimate Mindset SOS tool.
Find out more here.