An intentional mind has clarity about what things are important to you - when you need to focus on your goals and your relationships, and when you can allow your mind to be free to run and play like a puppy.
An intentional mind can resist the instant gratification for bigger goals that require persistence and patience, which can be a game changer in your life, especially in today's day and age.
See the instant gratification has a dark side that's often hidden from you initially because while some things are easier to get whenever you want them, that's not true for all things in life. In fact, most things that REALLY matter in life, that REALLY make you happy are the ones that often require time, patience and discipline.
For example, Investing in your relationships. In our current day and age, with all the dating and networking apps, it's not difficult to meet new people, but cultivating deep friendships and meaningful relationships out of these opportunities still requires patience, effort and time - and the will to not give-up when things get tough, but rather work through the rough patch.
Or getting good grades in class, or a promotion at job - it's not just about that exam or that interview. It's about the discipline to develop your knowledge base and your skillset that you get an opportunity to prove in that interview.
These things do not cater to instant gratification, and the problem with that, which makes it difficult to not get discouraged and give-up.
Giving-up is the only guarantee of failure. But in order to not give-up, you really have to put consistent effort day-after-day to get to those goals that you set for yourself. There's not that instant gratification - that immediate sense of closure or excitement, but you have to keep going.
And that's the other problem with instant gratification is that the more you experience seemingly harmless moments of allowing instant gratification, more you get your brain used to having your all needs met right away, and harder it becomes to practice patience and self control.
The more you train your puppy mind to be disciplined and earn the distracting things that seem so fun, whether that's scrolling through your instagram feed, or watching the latest upload of your favorite Youtuber, easier it becomes to resist that instant gratification.
Now I'm going to share a 4-step secret to train your puppy mind to grow and develop into a beautiful Intentional mind. That will help you stay focused to work on your assignments, or to stay motivated to exercise regularly, or to resist that chocolate cake when you are trying to eat healthy. Whatever your goals are, developing this Intentional Mind will help you make your dreams come true.
But before we get into that, if you're getting any value out of this video, then please do hit that like button, and if you're new here, then be sure to subscribe for more contents like this.
So the four step approach to developing your Intentional mind is - RIPS - Reward, Incentive, Persistence, and Social Reinforcement.
The first step in this process is Reward.
Just like a puppy needs treats when training, your mind needs rewards as well. One way to reward yourself is to set small rewards for every time you resist instant gratification, and a bigger reward for major milestones along the way.
For example, if your goal is to save money for traveling, then reward yourself by actually putting cash away into a jar every time you resist buying a latte... it sort of builds-up on that instant gratification behavior, but instead of having the gratification of a bad behavior, you're reinforcing getting an instant gratification of a reward.
And another way to reward yourself is to reinforce your progress towards your bigger goal or dream. Such as crossing-off each successful day of effort on a calendar to visualize you making progress towards your goals.
In this approach towards a reward system, you step away from the need for instant gratification all together, and work towards developing patience by recognizing that bigger dreams often need multiple small steps that may not be rewarding in themselves, but they each contribute to help you get to your eventual goals.
The second step in the process is Incentive and Motivation
Your reward can't be your only motivation. You see, a puppy gets distracted very easily and quickly when it's bored, but try distracting a puppy when he is eating his favorite bone.
If you're not enjoying what you are doing, it will be difficult to stay disciplined and keep going for long. The work that you're doing has to be tied to your dreams and goals.
Now before you write-off this step, because may be what you have to do right now just doesn't feel exciting to you, stop for a second to reflect on why are you doing it all? Why do you do anything that you don't like and enjoy? There's always an end-goal that drives an action. Let me explain!
Maybe you're taking a course that you don't like because it's a requirement for your major. And while, that particular course might not excite you, but it is still is a step towards your longer-term goal, your major - your dream
Maybe you don't like your day job, but you have to go and work there every day because that's how you pay for your car or your kid's tuition. Then the motivation obviously isn't your job or career, but the lifestyle - your house, your career, your kids or their future.
So recognize your incentive for going through the tough things that you don't want to do. Identify what your motivation is, and right it down somewhere you see it daily - so you can remind yourself frequently of the goals that you're working towards - why you're putting in all this work and effort that you are putting-in.
So whatever it is that you're doing or you have to do at this stage - tie it to your ultimate dream, your long-term goal, and that's where your motivation lies - and that's what will empower you to resist instant gratifications, which feel fun and exciting in the moment, but don't contribute to your long-term goals, and don't help you make progress towards your dreams.
And that third step in this 4-step process is persistence
Persistence is the only way to succeed. Thomas Edison failed on 1000 bulbs before eventually succeeding. Michael Jordan was cut-off from his high school basketball team. Steven Spielberg was rejected from the film school three times. Imagine if any of them had given-up alone the way.
If Thomas Edison had given-up, maybe not after 10th or 20th light bulb, but may be after failing on 200 light bulb ideas, 500 ideas, 800 ideas, or even 998th idea - We might still be living without light bulbs.
The lesson here is that persistence is key to success, and it's more true for resisting instant gratification than anything else. The more you keep trying to resist your distractions and instant gratifications, more you develop new neural pathways in your brain, that strengthens your new behavior with repetition.
It is possible that you may not succeed at resisting that pizza, or staying off of video games, or eating healthy at first. And even if you succeed for a while, it is still possible that you might fall off the wagon once in a while.
And those are the points, where you will have a choice - do you give-up? Or do you decide to persist and get back on the track, and try again and again until you succeed.
If you give-up, then that's the end. BUT, if you decide to try again, then you give yourself another chance to succeed. It is possible that you might fail again, but even then you will have yet another chance to get up again and try once again. But you won't loose, until you loose your spirit - you won't loose until your keep persisting.
And the last step in this four-step process is social reinforcement
Going back to the puppy mind analogy - have you ever noticed that when one puppy starts to bark, all the other puppies start to do the same, or when one dog picks up a stick at the park, they all want to play with a stick.
Your puppy mind is exactly the same. The old saying that you're the average of your five closest friends has some truth to it. While the number 5 is an arbitrary number in that saying, research has shown and proven repeatedly that you are heavily influenced by people around you - it effects everything from your way of thinking to the way you act, and even the things you like.
You need people around you, who share your dream. If you want to resist the instant gratification to alcohol, then join AA. If you want to resist the temptations of desserts, then join a healthy cooking club. If you want to exercise more, then join a runner's group or a yoga class.
Find your community - Find your tribe, people who support you, but share your dreams and goals. It's even easier now in the golden age of social media to find like-minded people.
This support doesn't just have to be your partner, friends or family members. It they support you great, but if not find your community elsewhere - there are online support groups for everything these day - from people who hate their jobs to people who just want someone to hold them accountable for the things the say they will do.
without this S, which stands for social support, the acronym is just RIP - and that's exactly what happens to efforts and motivation, without social support. So, find your S - find your community that supports your and holds you accountable - whether in-person or online.
So those are the 4 steps that can help you train your puppy mind into an intentional mind.