Mindset refers to the thoughts that occupy your mind and the way your brain processes them, which are then translated into observable traits– your body language, facial expression, tone of voice, words you use, posture, situational choices and actions. Mindset can also influence your physiology, such as your heart and respiratory rates. Mindset is essentially your “operating software.” It has a stronger influence on who you are as a person than your genetic makeup, in more ways than one.
But it’s not that simple. After all, if choosing your mindset is all it takes to be a healthy, happy, and financially successful person, then the population would be a lot healthier than it is today. There are a multitude of factors, some of them unknown, that combine to make you the person you are today. The question of “nature vs. nurture” is often brought up when discussing this topic. Some believe that nature (natural tendency; genes) determines what kind of an adult a child will become; others believe it is nurture (the environment– parents, siblings, school, etc.).
What we do know is that it is possible for one to change even the most ingrained mindset. We see it all the time. And in many cases, it doesn’t require the services of a mental health professional such as a counselor, psychologist or psychiatrist. For some people, it takes a life-changing event such as surviving a heart attack or losing a loved one unexpectedly. And there are those who just “put their mind to it,” educating themselves on personal transformation techniques, and successfully willthemselves to change.
While a self-destructive mindset can lead one to a state of bad health by cultivating bad dietary habits, the good news is that it is quite possible; even probable, to be able to change your mindset to one that promotes health and well-being. It is the one thing that separates man from animals; it is the gift of higher intelligence.