Starting every day with “what if?”

One of my business coaches gave me some sage advice. He suggested that instead of taking the stance of always trying to mitigate risk, what if I instead considered thinking about challenges from a “what if” perspective. One that is a positive perspective, and imagining how the challenge will work out in my favor.

Some may refer to this as a mindset approach, while others could consider this to be part of what they would suggest is similar to the concept called manifestation. If you are not familiar with either of these concepts, it’s worth looking into them.

In the simplest form, mindset is a process of allowing your thoughts to be open to many considerations. In other words, being open-minded with your thinking, and not letting past experiences shape or obstruct your mind from other potential outcomes when your mindset was closed. The concept of manifestation is thinking positively about a situation, and how it will have the outcome you desire it to have. Again, this requires you to be open-minded, and the timing on this concept may not always be immediate in terms of delivering the outcome you desire.

The possibility of combining these two methods of thinking as part of your “what if” strategy to start off your day, is one of the ways you can begin to alter your scenario outcomes. Yes, for those of you who have not tried either of these concepts, let alone combining them, this might seem like a real stretch for you. So, starting out by attempting to apply one of them is what I would recommend initially doing.

Once you have “test driven” each of these concepts, and had success with them, you can then work towards combining them and leveraging the power they can offer in your daily thinking and outcomes.

Let’s say that you are not an optimist, or that you have possibly been told you are not an open-minded person. That’s OK, as it’s never too late or too soon to consider thinking differently. At first it might seem like it would be impossible for someone to change the way they think, but it’s not. Peoples habits can be changed, but they have to want to change them. Consider the phrase “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink that water”. This is the same theory. Perhaps you may have encountered this sentiment in your life?

As you may be aware, the power of suggestion can be a tremendously powerful motivator or catalyst for change. Even if someone is only slightly willing to consider a different outcome or way of thinking. Having them applying the “what if” concept to how they go about thinking could produce extremely different outcomes than they might have considered before.

If I asked you the question: Are you open-minded, what is your immediate thought? The majority of people I ask this question believe they are. Although when you ask them some additional questions relating to this topic, this is when you truly find out if they are. What are these other questions? They are:

  • When was the last time you changed your way of thinking based on considering more information?
  • Do you tend to accept information at face value? Or, do you more often feel comfortable with your decisions after researching information on your own, and to ensure you understand both sides of any topic being discussed?
  • Has anyone ever told you that you are stubborn? This potentially could apply to either your thinking, or the way that you do something that you are unwilling to try to do any other way. Even if it would be more beneficial for you to do so.
  • Have others you interact with ever expressed you frustrate them? Consider why they might be saying this.
  • Is it possible for you to consider someone else’s opinion to have merit?
  • Why do you come across as always having to be right? Or, that you are the only one with a sound and reasonable answer?
  • Do you value others who are closed-minded?
  • Would you want to be considered an open-minded person?

Surprisingly, or at least to me, there are people who would not want to be classified as being open-minded. However, in my opinion and experience, I have seen people who have changed from being closed-minded to becoming more open-minded gain tremendous opportunities and advantages over those who are not.

When you are open to the possibility of “what if”, and can re-frame your mind around it having a positive outcome, I will guarantee you will start to see and experience different and better outcomes. Are you still skeptical? What have you got to lose by trying this? You won’t know until you give it a try.

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