Unwind your limiting mindset and replace it with a powerful one explains Graham Price

Many years ago, I created a game that changed my life. I’ve shared it with thousands since then and it’s changed thousands more lives. So, I thought I might share it with you.

One of many powerful understandings about the human mind is that our mindset (the word we use for all the unconscious beliefs and programming that run our lives all the time) develops primarily through our behaviour. Powerful behaviour creates powerful mindsets. Limiting behaviour creates limiting mindsets.

If someone with a limiting mindset does what their mindset is telling them to do, they reinforce that limiting mindset. Equally if someone with a powerful mindset does what their mindset is telling them to do, they reinforce that powerful mindset. And, most important, if someone with a limiting mindset does powerful things, they’ll unwind their limiting mindset and replace it with a powerful one.

Hence the best way to develop a powerful mindset is to step out of our comfort zone and act in powerful ways. That will initially make us uncomfortable. To deal with the discomfort we need to be able to accept it for now. I provide the means to do this in my therapy, coaching and development trainings.

This leads to a powerful psychological tool called ‘Accept the feeling, choose the action’ where the action needed to strengthen our mindset is the opposite of whatever action any current limiting thoughts or feelings are driving us to take, while we accept those uncomfortable feelings. I use this tool, among others, to resolve most mind-based limitations in my therapy clients and to develop a powerful mindset in my coaching and development training clients.

Another of the many powerful tools in my armoury is ‘making commitments’. I define a commitment as an ‘unbreakable promise’ and I use commitments in my therapy, coaching and development trainings.

The Fear Game simply combines these two tools. I developed it for my own use to deal with situations where I was opting out of taking particularly challenging actions. I knew this was reinforcing limitations and unwinding some of the mindset strengthening that I’d already achieved though meeting smaller challenges. So, I knew that, to make further progress, these opt-outs needed to stop.

The game I created to achieve this had one simple rule. Once I’d committed to the game, every fearful challenge I came across had to be faced. There were sensible exceptions. I didn’t have to do it if it was dangerous, financially risky, might upset others, was illegal or immoral, or I genuinely didn’t have the time. Otherwise I had no choice. The penalty, if I didn’t face the challenge, was that the game would end and I couldn’t restart it. I knew the game would change my life, so that penalty was simply too big to allow.

On my first day playing the game I faced three challenges that I simply wouldn’t have been brave enough to face if I hadn’t committed to the game. I spoke to an audience 10 times bigger than the largest audience I’d ever previously faced. I spoke to a lady on a train who I simply wouldn’t have spoken to without my commitment to the game. And I signed up to a course that culminated in me having to entertain a theatre audience of one thousand, alone on stage, something I wouldn’t even have contemplated without my commitment to the game.

Over the following three months I faced every imaginable challenge. These included jumping out of a plane (with a parachute I should add), speaking to ever larger audiences, and many more challenges. At the end of the three months I was able to drop the game. I no longer needed it. In that time, it had significantly changed me and contributed hugely to my good fortune of being able to live an extraordinary life over the decades since.

If you’d like to know about the other contributions, join me on my ‘Positive Mind Training’ webinar, free to readers of this article, mentioned in the author box. I promise your life will change for the better in many major ways, including having all the tools you’ll need to be able to play the Fear Game.

Graham W Price is a chartered psychologist, personal and executive coach and development trainer. He’s an accredited member of the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) and a leading provider of Acceptance Action Therapy ... (Read More)

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