Why Belief Is a Highly Important Ingredient For Leadership Success and Also the Most Dangerous
How do you create belief, how does it affect your results, how do you maintain belief until you achieve your desired result, and why is belief sometimes dangerous?
One way to describe belief is to say, “belief is an attitude that something is true or a fact.” So if you create a goal and believe you will achieve it you are holding in mind that you have already achieved your goal. This is a powerful stimulant for driving you to your objective.
William James, the founder of American psychology put it like this: “Our belief at the beginning of a doubtful undertaking is the one thing (now get this - is the ONE thing) that ensures the successful outcome of your venture.”
How to create a belief
I start by visualizing my objective in my mind.
Then I close my eyes and work on bringing my image to life.
I make the image as large as I possibly can.
I color up the image by adding colorful clothes to the people, painting the buildings, cars, and other manufactured items, and then I color in nature as she should be.
Next, I add sounds if they are applicable.
Then, I turn my image into a movie so that it is as life-like as possible.
Finally, I fix the image in my mind by linking it to something that is a constant in my life like the computer screen that I look at daily.
Once I have got the image securely fixed in my mind I ask myself, “How do I feel about this?”
Once I have a feeling I ask, “Can I make this feeling stronger?” I then go on and on making the feeling stronger and stronger until I really believe that the image will become my reality.
How strong beliefs improve your results
A belief is an attitude but it is also a feeling. The stronger you can make the feeling the greater will be the energy with which you seek to make your belief your reality.
When someone strongly believes they are right about something they are very difficult to shift from that belief. It is that same strength of belief that can drive you to achieve your ambition or your objective.
When you become fixated on the belief that you will achieve a particular objective and you pursue that objective with the powerful belief that you will make it come to pass you are highly likely to achieve your objective.
How to win the challenge of maintaining your belief until you achieve your objective
The only way to maintain your belief and benefit from it continuing to energize and motivate you is to keep the image of your objective constantly in mind.
This is why religions use icons and images of saints, martyrs, and gods to constantly remind believers of their beliefs. Similarly, football and other sports teams constantly publish images of players, team shirts, stadia, and highlights from games to reinforce fans’ belief in their team. Schools litter the corridors of their buildings with images of successful students in order to inspire belief within the current crop of students that they too can achieve great things.
Your task is to keep the colorful, bright, noisy, lively image of your objective constantly at the forefront of your mind.
How beliefs add greatly to the power of leaders
The role of every leader is to inspire their team to produce the best possible results. A lively, believable image of the outcome for which the team is striving gives the leader a powerful motivational tool for energizing the team.
The most powerful and believable team objective images are those created by the whole team working together because when we create something ourselves we feel a sense of ownership. It is that sense of shared ownership that unites teams.
Do affirmations work for reinforcing beliefs?
Affirmations tend to be reasonably effective for the small proportion of people with an aural learning style. But as most people have either a kinaesthetic (emotional) or a visual learning style pictures that arouse feeling work better than affirmations for most people.
Why beliefs can sometimes be dangerous
Most people will, on occasion, form fearful or anxiety-provoking images in their minds. For instance. when recessions loom many people become anxious and can start to imagine the dire consequences of being made redundant. Such images can perpetuate their feelings of anxiety so that they become stressed and their work suffers. When that happens they can increase the chances that they will, in fact, be made redundant
You should always be careful to not hold in mind images of negative outcomes because they can easily generate negative beliefs. When you do find yourself generating negative images you should immediately ask yourself, “What if the opposite happens?” or “What if something much better happens? What would that look like?” And then build a positive outcome image.
Thoughts for the day
In what do you believe?
How do you sustain your beliefs?
Do all members of your team share your beliefs? If not how can you spread your beliefs in order to energize your team?
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