(The following was the final BmacMedia Ezine of 2007).
Funny time of year this. Short days, dark nights. Sometimes it’s difficult to pick yourself up and feel inspired. It’s a good thing they put Christmas on at this time, otherwise we’d all go a little bananas!
At the end of each year, you will find people putting a lot of pressure on themselves. Pressure to be better next year. Pressure to gain more, to be more, to achieve more.
That’s all great and admirable.
Naturally, there is no harm in trying to advance yourself to be the best you feel you can be.
It becomes a problem, though, when we ask too much of ourselves too soon.
You’ll hear people say that they are going to lose weight, quit smoking and go to the gym from now on.
But, what happens when they find that after one week the are back smoking, have packed on a couple of more pounds and can’t remember where their gym gear is?
I think that’s what’s called feeling like a ‘failure’.
Let’s face it, we all want to be better and strive to be better people, both personally and professionally.
Asking too much of ourselves too soon, though, will only lead to ‘failure’ and therefore re-enforcing the idea that we’re not able to do ‘it’.
So what’s the solution?
Figuring out one thing that you would like to work upon and sticking with it until you have brought it as far as you think possible.
It all comes down to the basic premise of having your goals set out.
If you have been receiving this Ezine for a while, you may have noticed by now that I am very big on the whole concept of ‘Goals’.
The reason I feel so strongly about Goals is that it really is an incredibly simple way of stripping back all of the ‘mind talk’ that goes on in your head.
‘Mind Talk’ being the constant chatter that you hear whenever you are left to think your thoughts.
“What if I can’t? / How did they get the gig? / Maybe I should move / Maybe I should stay / What did he mean by that? / Does the PD think I’m rubbish on air? / I should quit now / I should stick at it / I do everything at work and never get recognised / I wish I could speak up more / Where am I going with this…?”
That’s Mind Talk.
It’s the constant soundtrack that we hear in our head, telling us what to do and not to do. Talking us through each scenario. Questioning our abilities. Making us doubt ourselves.
Mind Talk exists because we allow it to exist.
The great news is that it’s really easy to extinguish.
Pick a Goal.
When you have your Goal and concentrate on it every day, it sets forth a series of events in your mind. It’s vital that you think about it every day in order to allow your mind to focus on it.
What you are doing here is basically re-training your mind. You are re-training it to your advantage.
It’s funny, when you think about it.
The only person who can place thoughts in your own mind is…you!
I can’t place a thought in your head if you don’t want it there. Neither can anyone else. Sure I can suggest something, but in the end, it’s you that decides whether you want to go with that thought or not.
Why then, I wonder, do so many of us, think self-damaging thoughts.
“I’m not good enough…They don’t like me…I’ll never make it…”
These are your thoughts about YOU.
In our lifetime, we will hear enough people try to put us down or keep us in our place or give their (unwanted) opinions of our skills and us as on air people.
They will have their own reasons for doing this.
What reason do you have for adding similar thoughts?
None, as far as I’m concerned.
Imagine what you could do if you gave yourself a chance.
Imagine how you would feel if you were able to stop those voices.
Imagine what it would be like to be able to control the Mind Talk and decide what it is you wanted.
That’s all you need.
Decide what that Goal is and work on it.
Focus on that Goal and it’s outcome. Stay focussed.
You are re-training your brain, not to knock you down and question your abilities. You are re-training your brain to build you up and help you succeed.
Is that what you want – to succeed?
Whatever success means to you, then that is what you aim for.
Success could be getting a fulltime on air gig. It could be to land the morning show or become APD or just get on air for the first time. It doesn’t matter what your personal goal is. The point is, there will be enough people telling you that you can’t do it. Why be another one of those people?
Your mind is there for a reason. It’s there to help you. That’s its job. It’s not doing its job very well if it’s not allowed help.
How can your mind help you, if you won’t give it the chance?
Take a look at yourself right now.
What have you achieved that you are proud of?
Can you think of anything?
Most people, when I ask this question, try to think about big events in their lives that have had a major impact on them.
That’s not necessarily what I’m talking about here.
I am trying to show you that everything in your life that you have aimed for and achieved has been a major milestone.
When you were a kid in school learning to read, did you stop because the teacher told you you got a word wrong?
No. If you did, then you wouldn’t be able to read this Ezine now.
Did you stop when an adult said that you were wasting your time ‘messing around’ with that fantasy of being on the radio?
No. If you did, you wouldn’t be a radio professional now.
They are two examples of how you, unconsciously, stopped the ‘Mind Talk’ and focussed on your Goal.
Your goal was to read – you learned to read, despite the setbacks.
Your goal was to get on the radio – you got on the radio, despite people telling you that it was a waste of time.
You just knew that you could do these things and nothing and no one was going to stop you.
Can you take that drive and that belief into the New Year, do you think?
Can you take that self-belief and determination that has taken you this far, further?
I believe you can.
Find it and face it.
Then concentrate on it.
If you have too many goals at one time, then it just becomes too difficult to maintain the level of dedication needed to see them all through.
If you were the person who needed to lose weight, give up smoking and get fitter – you would be better off maybe trying the smoking thing first and reaching that milestone, before taking on another.
If you are the person who wants to work the breakfast shift at Major Market FM and are currently the Weekender at Minor Market FM, then setting yourself your first goal would be the task for you.
Figure out your steps and take those steps. Step one is Progress Goal Number One as you go for the Big One!
When you let up on your focus, then it’s just like quitting the gym and eating the extra slice of chocolate cake. You won’t drop the pounds while you’re concentrating on Black Forest Gateau, in the same way you won’t reach your Goal if you don’t concentrate on it every day.
Thanks for a great year.
I have loved writing these Ezines and am genuinely grateful that you have chosen to receive them.
To all the people I have met and spoken with through BmacMedia over the past twelve months, it truly has been my honour.
There are so many wonderful, professional people in the radio industry and I have been lucky enough to meet a massive amount of them in 2007.
I wish you the best and know that if you want it and if you focus on it, then you can achieve it.
By the way, my Goal at the start of 2007 was to start BmacMedia. Then it was to work alongside radio presenters and hold Radio Workshops.
It’s been a good year.
I have set my Goals for 2008 and have no doubt that I will achieve them.
That’s not me trying to be cocky.
That’s just the confidence you can bring to yourself by losing the ‘Mind Talk’.
Best wishes for 2008.