How Long Does it Take To Change Your Mindset?

It got me thinking…

As you know I’m pregnant, just about ready to pop.

I was on my way to see my consultant at the hospital as they are monitoring my gestational diabetes.

Having had a less than positive start to my morning I was hoping for some good news but for one reason or another, it didn’t happen.

I didn’t receive any bad news, just not what I was hoping for…So feeling a bit deflated and fed up I found myself on my journey home.

On that journey, stuck in traffic, I had the feeling in the pit of my stomach that the day wasn’t going to pan out well. But, then I remembered I am always telling my team it is how you respond that dictates how things work out.

I realised I was feeling a bit sorry for myself.

I was feeling down (what woman doesn’t at 34 weeks pregnant, right?!).

But, I was determined not to let it affect my entire day…I resolved that on the journey home I was going to change my mindset.

So, in answer to that team members question “how long does it take to change your mindset?”, my answer today is 22 miles (approx 30 minutes).

Because that’s how far it is from the hospital to where I live now – the distance between my past and my future!

I resolved that during that journey I would stop feeling sorry for myself, take some positive action to ensure that my day was not a failure.

The failure was, after all, only in my mind! It was only me making my day bad, no-one else.

By changing from a negative to a positive mindset I would go from a dreadful day to a good day, if not perhaps a super day!

Yes, I had, for a few minutes in the morning, been reduced to tears. But surely that was just me dwelling on the past and what was but can no longer be?

We cannot change the past.

As Rafiki says in the Lion King “The past can hurt. But the way I see it you can either run from it, or learn from it”.

There’s nothing that can be done about it so don’t dwell on it.

On the flip-side, there is little you can do about the future either. Yes, you may believe you can influence the future, and I guess you can position yourself for likely eventualities. But, the only time you can do anything about it is NOW!

My good friend and mindset mentor, Dave O’Connor, said recently – “believe in the future by creating it first”.

In other words, you can have a vision of the future but you must do stuff now, today, to make stuff happen!

Back to the original question about changing your mindset.

I seem to recall Tom Peters saying in his book ‘In Search of Excellence’ that if you wanted to become world class at something don’t leave it until tomorrow to start, start now.

So, although I said it took 22 miles/30 minutes for me to change my mindset, it actually changed the moment I made the decision to change it.

The distance/time element is just a convenient planning tool. It gives me a clear picture between one world and another. An area of relatively clear space when I can stop thinking about what is behind me and focus instead on what is ahead of me.

It’s a bit like travelling for a holiday.

There is a point in your journey when you stop thinking about whether you shut the windows, turned off the hair straighteners, locked the door and start instead to think about what your new holiday place is going to be like.

You leave one mindset behind and begin, instead, to adopt the new mindset.

My point here is, by all means, set some constraints where you will make that change. Between home and work, between two locations, between two events, whatever fits for you.

But, remember you are simply making an excuse to delay because you must make that change instantly, at a given point in time.

It does not happen over a period. You are simply making excuses to put off changing your outlook.

Don’t delay, there is no better time than now. This very moment.

In everything you face each day, take time to consider how you are reacting. Is that response positive?

Or is that response having a negative effect on you and your life or the people closest to you?

If the latter then please stop, take a moment to think, consider what a positive outcome would be and adopt a positive response.

Taking control of your mindset will have a significantly positive effect on everything in your life.


1. The past cannot be changed
2. Opinions don’t define your reality
3. Everyone’s journey is different
4. Things always get better with time
5. Judgements are a confession of character
6. Overthinking will lead to sadness
7. Happiness is found within
8. Positive thoughts create positive things
9. Smiles are contagious
10. Kindness is free
11. You will only fail if you quit
12. What goes around comes around

Peace out, Nat x

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