May 14, 2019

How your mindset can lead you to your downfall

We talk about change all the time, about how it’s become a constant element in our world and about how its pace is accelerating. We all talk about the future and how we could work toward creating a better one. Sometimes we spend so much time talking and learning about how to better ourselves for the future that we forget about the here and now and the problems of today.

The reality is that our world is never going to be as perfect as we want it to be. Everyone has a different definition of perfection, and the fact is that imperfections are the reason our world progresses, because we are continuously trying to solve problems.

Because of all this, what is crucial today is our mindset. It is what determines how we act, and through our actions, we can create change.

Our world may seem to be a bottomless pit of problems with complexities of different degrees. Take a step back and think about it: your mindset is so powerful that it can be the reason you cease to grow and progress in any way. It exerts so much power over you that it is the reason that all these problems in our world can never be solved.

But, your mindset is also the reason you can progress and grow to become better. A positive mindset is the reason we have people like Jeff Bezos, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and so many other leading innovators who changed our world.

These innovators didn’t wait for something else better to come along so that they could do better in their lives and for the lives of others. So why do we wait for change? Let’s get real — the problems we see today aren’t the things that stop us from moving forward; it is our mindset that stops us before we even begin to act.

We all want a better world and the best versions of ourselves. But we cannot achieve those goals if our mindset says otherwise. Here are ways to avoid your mindset from becoming the reason for your downfall.

First, become self-aware of your words and actions. Take the time to really listen to the words you say or notice the way you react to people. One of the telltale signs that your mindset is pushing you off the cliff toward your doom is when you complain without trying to act, blame others for mishaps before even thinking, or even blame yourself for any problem that arises.

Self-awareness isn’t just great for self-understanding, it is also great to help open your mind to how others may view you. Sometimes, with the pace at which we move, we don’t realize how we affect others.

Second, through self-awareness, determine which end of the spectrum — from negative to positive — your mind tends to deviate toward. It’s not about being optimistic or pessimistic, but more about negative or positive reactions and effects. To illustrate, blaming yourself or others for everything is on the negative end of the spectrum while taking accountability and acting to solve problems moves toward the positive.

This brings us to the third point, which is to try to push toward the positive end of the spectrum. Positivity isn’t about being overly cheerful about every adversity we face. It is about giving yourself and others the space to grow and have this deeper understanding that we all view things differently based on our experiences.

When we move toward the negative end of the spectrum, what we often do is that we forget to open our minds and step into other people’s shoes to see what they see. We’re so busy seeing what we see that we assume that it is the truth, but in fact, there are different perspectives. We can rely on facts and logic for some decisions or actions we take, but we also need a deeper human understanding.

Everything, from how we see the world to how we react to that world, is controlled by our mindset. But the most powerful thing that we humans possess is the ability to control how we react. We all have good and bad qualities. That balance is important for creating positive effects on others, and it’s the only way for us to avoid the road to our downfall.

Arinya Talerngsri is Chief Capability Officer and Managing Director at SEAC (formerly APMGroup) Southeast Asia’s Lifelong Learning Center. She can be reached by email at or Experience our lifelong learning ecosystem today at