Two people walk into a bar.

The first sees less than ideal lighting. She sees a drink list that doesn’t exactly excite her. She hates the flooring. It doesn’t seem like her crowd. The bathroom is a little dingy.

quote about changing the way you look at things and how that affects your mindset

She has all fair points.

The second person notices that the bartender knows everyone personally and remembers their drink orders. She sees they have a popcorn machine. She loves popcorn. She sees people enjoying playing pool together and friends catching up. She excitedly tries a new beer she hasn’t had before.

Sorry to those of you who were waiting for a hilarious punchline. Unfortunately, this story isn’t a joke; it’s a reality.

The bar is neither good nor bad. The bar is exactly what you perceive it to be and a direct reflection of your mindset. 

Maybe person one just really hates dive bars. That’s fine. Maybe she’s had a bad day. That’s fine too. But the fact of the matter is, one way or another she has found herself in the bar, and she has a choice to either embrace it or denounce it.

We are constantly exposed to massive amounts of data about our surroundings and experiences. We are in control of which pieces of information we internalize and use to form our opinions. And our mindset as we process this information will shape whether our opinions and experiences are positive or negative.

As we learned last week at our Weducation event with Coach Libby, mindset is everything. We learned 7 different mindset levels all the way from self-pity to complete transcendence. Unless you plan on spending  A LOT of time meditating, your goal should be to spend most of your time somewhere in between.

The 7 levels of mindset graphic

There is certainly a time and place for realism. There is an appropriate time to feel sorry for yourself and grieve. There are times when you need to get angry to be able to move forward. And there are times when caring for others is a noble cause. All mindsets have an appropriate time and place, but the question is, which do you want to be your default? Where do you want to hang out?

Two people walk into a bar. Which person has more fun? Which person feels better? Which person do you want to be around?

Two people walk into a bar. Which one are you?

This week’s challenge

Print out the mindset chart from above, and keep it handy throughout the week. Reference it throughout the day, and determine in which level you reside most often. Assign a daily breakdown to how much time you spend in each mindset level.

At the end of the week assess:

  1. Is the breakdown what you thought it would be?
  2. Is the breakdown what you’d like it to be?
  3. How can you catch yourself when you are going into a less desirable mindset?
  4. What helps you to elevate to your desired mindset?
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Nicole Wood

Nicole Wood

Nicole Wood is the CEO and co-founder of Ama La Vida, an innovative life, career and leadership coaching company. She is passionate about helping people to find meaningful and lucrative work and to not have to wait until 6pm to love their lives. Read more about Nicole here.