The battle cry of dieters everywhere is “you are what you eat.” But when it comes to organizational change and leadership “you are what you think,” says columnist Jeff Cole.
Decades ago, famous motivational speaker Earl Nightingale wrote a fascinating book called The Strangest Secret in which he tells us “we become what we think about most.”
That’s an interesting thought to ponder.
Here’s a quote from an unrelated anonymous source: “As a person thinks so shall they behave.”
Underlying both of these quotes is a simple concept:our thoughts drive our behaviours.
What does this mean to us? If it’s Saturday morning, you get out of bed and your first thought is “What cartoons are on today?” that will drive a certain behavior. If you ask a higher quality of question such as “What’s the best use of my time this morning?” or “What needs to be done around the house?” or “How can I surprise and delight my spouse today?” you may find yourself having a higher quality day.
Tony Robbins has described thinking as the process of asking ourselves questions and answering them. The quality of our lives is directly correlated to the quality of questions we ask ourselves. Much like there is junk food very handy at every corner that does nothing nutritionally for your body but tastes good, there are “junk” questions out there that may easily pop into one’s mind.
The thing is – we get to control what we think about! Just because junk food is placed in front of you, it does not mean you automatically eat it – we each have a choice. If a junk question automatically enters your mind you need not mindlessly act on it like one of Pavlov’s dogs. Step one is to recognize it and step two is to replace it with a higher quality of thought.