Have you heard of the classic victim versus victor mindset? If you haven’t, you need to. This mental attitude consists of two separate and opposite mindsets, recognition of which can help you attain your goals and feel fulfilled in your personal and professional lives.
Having a classic victor inclination helps you create an easy integration of your work-lifestyle balance and reinforce a positive outlook in life. On the other hand, having a classic victim disposition creates a negative outlook on life and deepens your work-lifestyle imbalance. Recognizing these two different mindsets will help you focus on the internal work needed to quit making excuses and look for extrinsic motivations. If you’re feeling out of balance and unfulfilled, it may be your fault.
In order to understand the importance of the classic victim versus victor mindset, let’s use a coin as a metaphor. One side of the coin, which is bright and shiny, represents the classic victor mindset. The other side, dark and tarnished, represents the classic victim mindset.
If you are not in control of your life, then you’re, in essence, just flipping a coin in order to determine your life outcomes. Maybe it will land as bright and shiny, maybe not. Only you have the power to avoid such a coin flip and make sure your life stays on the right side. The classic victor, with her in-the-moment attitude, focuses on the positive and systematic pursuit of consistent short- and long-term goals.
So, where do you start in order to stop being the classic victim? Start by becoming aware of your personal, internal dialog: the silent conversation all of us have inside our head every day. Then comes categorization. Which of your thoughts are positive? Which are negative? If you’ve never kept track before, do so now, and I think you’ll be surprised at how often you’re concerned about the dark and tarnished and not the bright and shiny.
The classic victim’s behavior often includes the following:
• Constant excuses and complaints
• False blames and promises
• Fear of making mistakes and commitments
• Belief in quick shortcuts and outcomes
• Lost resources of time and energy
• Learning without applying new knowledge
• Lack of self-confidence and self-efficacy
On the other hand, the classic victor’s behavior usually includes:
• Constant motivation and goal setting
• Honoring impeccable values and promises
• Overcoming fears and obstacles
• Implementing effective solutions and productivity
• Focusing on progress and time management
• Growing by using new knowledge
• Following through to goal completion
If you choose to positively influence your thoughts and reinforce the behavior of a victor, you are progressing, not regressing in life.
We can be aided in this analysis by another metaphor. Let’s think of your thoughts as involving hardware and software. The hardware is, of course, your brain. The software is what you run through your brain in the form of conscious and unconscious thoughts. This software runs thousands of thoughts through our brain each day, 90% of which come from the past — for one with a classic victim mindset, probably even more.
By managing your internal dialog, you can stay motivated and guarantee that bright and shiny life outcome. If you don’t manage your internal dialogue, you almost guarantee a lack of motivation and achievement.
So, each day, ask yourself this question often: Do I benefit from having this specific thought?
I think it will be extremely illuminating. Please share your learning with me.
This article was originally published in Forbes.
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