Over the years I have worked on training the mind to overcome adversities and to improve it every day. I have designed a high-performance system composed of four critical factors. Here I share my experience and results:
Overcome adversities redesigning your mind
Here’s the high-performance system I’ve created over the years so I can overcome adversities, solve challenging problems and find exciting answers.
1. Challenge assumptions
Yes, and rethink my perception from different points of view. No matter what situation you have to face, I will most likely be stuck in a set of predefined assumptions. Challenging these fundamental assumptions allows me to extend my conception and awareness of the possibilities that I have not considered until now. I always start by asking “how” and then “why” and then I go deeper asking “how” and “why” again to each of the answers. Using this technique I always find new and better ways.
This is how I decided to take the Ultraman challenge.
2. Reconstruct the problem
And try to approach it from a more distant perspective. Expressing the problem out loud helps me identify it and call it by its name. Giving it other forms often leads me to different ideas to solve the problem. What I do to rethink my issues is to identify adversity from different angles:
- Why do I need to solve this problem?
- Is it a real problem?
- What challenges and obstacles do I have to overcome to solve this problem?
- What will be the consequences of not solving it?
- Which price will I have to pay to solve it?
Asking these questions helps me find useful insight. Solving new problems helps me generate ideas for the initial problem. This is how I developed Human Media.
3. Provoke me to train the mind
And take my thoughts and actions to the extreme. For me, this is the key to teaching the mind: investing in common conventions or considering radical alternatives. If it seems like I can’t discover something new, then I try to reverse things. That is, instead of focusing on the problem or context, boosting sales or improving my service or product, my usual practice is to consider how I could create that same problem, decrease sales or damage my product or service. It’s incredible how many resources and ideas I get from reverting ideas, helping to train the mind to leave the safety zone. When I get to them, I turn them over again as feasible solutions for the original situation.
This is how the Ultraproductivity method was born.
4. Express me through different ways
Yes, and discover new possibilities that shape my idea. According to the psychologist Howard Gardner, we all have multiple intelligences and not general intelligence. However, when faced with complex challenges, we tend to express ourselves, uniquely, through our ability to verbal reasoning. We lose so much there.
Every time I face something “impossible,” I try to use different ways to communicate my thoughts. From talking to myself out loud, writing about the matter, sharing it with my five counselors, asking about it on Twitter and seeing what answers I get. I also put together a video of my concern and transmit it via podcast. I try to be creative, the experiment of doing a new thing a day for 520 days benefited me a lot. There are many ways to do it. For example, I also use colored pencils, putty, lego blocks, music, the association of words or painting, even sex.
Most importantly, I do not try to solve (or create something) problems in this phase of expression. Just express it and have fun to discover new results. I know that my brain continues to work unconsciously on the initial problem (or creation or idea). It does this by trying to process information in different ways. By doing so, it triggers new thought patterns, which will generate more creative and disruptive results.
Through this system, I came to the idea of creating Stand OUT Program.
Action, action, action, this is how you overcome adversities
Training the mind is a matter of the following: training, testing, error, testing, error. Consistency, insistence, self-discipline, and self-awareness.
Note: when I speak of ideas or problems, they can be extrapolated to projects, businesses, products, experiments, super habits, systems, productivity, and lifestyle.
Photo credit: Rick Kent.