Women practicing mental health

Why Mental Capacity Matters with Your Job

Imagine a time where you have hit a roadblock, whether it be personal or professional. Did you fold or did you prevail? Really remember what process you went through in your mind. How did you get there?
For me, personally, I relate everything I do back to my runner mentality. With it being Chicago marathon week, I thought what better target to hit than the mind itself? Not everyone enjoys running the way I do, but I think the mindset that comes with the time spent training for a race can be reflected and learned from when it comes to the workplace, regardless of your position.
If you are struggling or just need a boost in momentum, I am hoping this bit of advice helps.
1. Tap into the power of habit
Clearly with training for a race, particularly a marathon, habitual running is key. Every morning, I wake up, lace up and run. That is a habit I have made for myself. It has to be a habit and natural. Sure, there will be days when it feels like it is a chore, but trust me, once something becomes a habit you will feel more natural doing whatever it is. Give it a try. Set a daily task for yourself at work. Tie it in with your goals. Watch it unfold. I promise, if you stick with it, it will pay off big time.

2. Visualize yourself doing your best
 Now this is where mind control matters. Because I recruit sales professionals, I really tie in my running mentality here. Before every race, I visualize the finish line, I visualize different mile markers and practice telling myself what it is I need to remember in those tough moments. Now, obviously, in the workplace, you generally are not physically running miles, but think about your next big meeting or in this case, your next big sale. The process through what that phone call or meeting will be like. Really put yourself there and let different scenarios play out in your mind. Then, when it comes to the day of the “big race,” meeting, or that next exciting phone call, you will already know the drill. You will be able to breathe and let your “practice make perfect.”

3. Anticipate obstacles
This one should come without saying, but often times this action gets neglected. It is easy to get caught up in thinking everything will play out perfectly 100% of the time. Our time is priceless, right? So you can either let the day run you or you can run the day. Now, I am not saying you should expect obstacles to happen, but you would be naïve to just think nothing will ever stand in your way. This goes back to visualizing, but on a deeper level, be ready for those moments when a hiccup happens. In a race, you may trip or maybe forget your race day nutrition at home, or the weather could be horrendous. Don’t let yourself fret over hurdles, just learn to accept them and move forward and know they are not permanent road blocks.
4. Deconstruct your goal
Pay close attention to details, both “good” and “bad.” It is one thing to set your goal(s), but a whole other task to pick it to pieces and analyze each part. If you are going to achieve your overall goal(s), then you must conquer each step leading up to it. Set intentions each day to do this. Back to running, this means doing the little things like proper nutrition, getting enough sleep, stretching, recovering, tracking your mileage, etc. So, figure out what you need to do in steps and set out each day to get it done.
Above all, don’t limit yourself in the workplace or in life. I am not saying these tips are the end all problem solver, but if you take them into consideration and implement them, they won’t steer you in the wrong direction. For me, this passion and drive comes a lot from my love for running. Use whatever drives you out of the workplace and translate it into the workplace. At the very least, I promise it will bring more insight and ideas from places you may have never thought of before.

Have a great week! 


Amanda Porter