Change Your Thoughts, Increase Your Income
What if you were told that you are earning today exactly the amount you have chosen to earn, no more and no less -- that you are where you are financially because you have chosen to be right there? Would you agree with that?
Most would adamantly disagree. But the fact remains that there are specific actions you’ve taken thus far to get to your current income level. In that context, you have decided or chosen the amount of your income as a result of your actions and inactions.
Inactions? Yes, inactions. Because no matter what income level you find yourself at, if someone asked you -- or anyone -- if they wanted to make more money, nine times out of ten, the answer would be yes.
And, since most people will answer in the affirmative, there have to be actions you have failed to take that have caused your current income to stay at a level below what you truly want to earn. So, the question becomes, "What must I do to increase my earning ability now?"
Fortunately, you can choose today to turn things around and start earning what you are truly worth, using these three simple steps.
1. Monitor your thoughts.
“Change your thoughts and you change your world," the "positive thinking" guru and author Norman Vincent Peale once said. In short: Thoughts are things. Thoughts leads to feelings. Feelings lead to actions. And actions lead to results.
No one thought lives in your head rent-free. Each thought you have will either be an asset or liability. It will move you toward happiness and success or away from it. It will empower you or weaken you. That’s why it’s of utmost importance to choose your thoughts wisely, in your personal life as well as your professional one.
Human behavior says that you become what you think about most of the time. Your predominant thoughts largely determine what you say, how you say it and how you act. The results you get in life, and especially in your career, are the direct results of your thoughts.
If you believe you can be paid more, then you can and will be. But if you think it will never happen, then guess what? It won’t. Throughout the day, be conscious of your self-talk. Do you talk to yourself in a gentle and loving manner, or do you berate yourself every time something goes wrong?
If you truly want to get paid what you’re worth, speak to yourself in a way that conveys that you are a unique person with special talents and abilities. Your combination of education, experience, knowledge, problems, successes and challenges makes you truly remarkable. There’s no one else like you. You have great potential; you just have to believe it.
What is one limiting belief you can let go of today?
2. Never eat alone.
“You can get everything you want in life, if you just help enough other people get what they want,” the motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said. Oftentimes, getting that prime job or obtaining that desired referral comes down to building relationships. Indeed, relationships are today's new currency. But you must be sincere. You must truly want to help someone get what he or she wants; then you will be able to get what you want.
So, today, look to find what you can do to help others. Start building relationships, and you will see how quickly you will be able to network yourself to a new job opportunity.
An excellent book that shines light on this topic is Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time by Keith Ferrazzi. In his book, Ferrazzi writes that his ability to connect with others and develop long-lasting relationships is based on generosity and helping friends connect with other friends.
Whom can you help today?
3. Kill your comfort zone.
"Everything you want is just outside your comfort zone," author Robert Allen has said. Think of your comfort zone as a self-imposed prison you’ve put yourself in. It consists of limiting thoughts and ideas about who you are and what you are capable of becoming. Perhaps you learned these limitations while you were young and they are still holding you hostage.
In order to choose your income, you have to believe you are worth more than you are currently making. It all starts with killing your comfort zone, all those limiting beliefs. It's time for a prison break.
You can make this shift by exchanging those negative self-thoughts with positive ones and doing something every day that gets you out of your comfort zone. Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “You must do one thing every day that scares you.” I agree. Now is the time to take your first scary step toward becoming the person you were meant to be.
Sacramento-based Meiko S. Patton is a writer for the federal government and author of How a Postage Stamp Saved My Life.