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Why the Microwave Mentality Doesn’t Work

Why the Microwave Mentality Doesn’t Work

Looking for results in your business or personal life? Feeling frustrated that it is taking too long? Perhaps you need to drop the Microwave Mentality!

Remember: anything that is worth something takes time. I recall one day standing by my microwave and thinking to myself, “Man, this sure is taking a long time!” As soon as those words filtered into my mind, I realized that I had been conditioned by the Microwave Mentality and instant-gratification ideology. I was no longer patient. I wanted instant results. Results so quickly that I considered the microwave as taking too much time. This was an eye-opener for me.

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To be honest with ourselves, how many times have we wanted to be the exception to every rule? I want to lose weight, but I don’t want to stop eating dessert, candy bars and fried foods. I want to lose weight, but I don’t want to exercise. I want to lose weight, but I want it NOW without any work put into it. I want to build a business, but I don’t want to start from the foundation. I want a successful business, but I don’t want to spend time and money to make it happen. I want to build a business, but I want it NOW without any work put into it. So, what can we do to change this mentality?

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Re-train your brain.

In today’s society, when everything is running at lightning speed, it is easy for us to pick up this mentality and begin to get frustrated at the time it actually takes to become successful in whatever area you are working. It’s time to re-train the brain. “Anything worth doing is worth doing right,” is a Hunter S. Thompson quote that my grandmother used to say to me. There is truth in that statement. How can we train our brains to understand this concept and keep from being frustrated? To begin with, realize the fact that everything needs to be built on a strong, lasting foundation. A house being built is not finished overnight. The builders will begin with a foundation. The foundation is key in everything you do. In order to have anything of lasting value it must be started on a strong footing. The groundwork may take time, yet it is essential for quality to be prevalent. This is true in our lives as well.

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Break down your goals.

If you are struggling with goals in your life, whether they be professional or personal, you need to look at the finished product. After seeing the finished product in your mind, begin to break your goal down into segments. Often times, our frustration stems from looking at the big picture and feeling immobilized. If you begin to break down the goal into smaller sections, you will find yourself moving along at a constant rate. You will no longer sense the frustration of not having finished your goal. You will begin to see each step of your accomplishment along the way. Celebrate the smaller victories, as you pace yourself for the remaining work. If you desire to lose 50 pounds, set mini goals along the way and celebrate your constant successes. When we see the forward motion of our performances, we begin to have patience for the results.

Write out your goals.

This is a practice used by the most successful people in the world today. When you write them down, remember to break them into small do-able sections. Each day do at least one thing to push you toward fulfillment of your goal. By incorporating this type of mentality you will begin to experience inner satisfaction from the triumphs you achieve. Jack Canfield, the co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul, writes his goals on index cards and reads them in the morning and evening each day. What a great habit! Before beginning to set a goal, do research on someone who has done this and see the amount of time and effort that it requires. You will be able to gauge your activities against another person’s success. This will encourage you and keep you motivated toward completion.

I realize how simple it is to want instant gratification. We live in a fast-paced world and we desire fast-paced results. The Microwave Mentality doesn’t work on anything of value in our lives. We need to realign our thinking. Pursue your goals and dreams with a desire for quality, regardless of the time and effort it takes. It will be worth it. You will succeed and you will have a strong foundation beneath you. Remember, the only thing a microwave is really good for is to heat up leftovers!

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Charlene Tops

Charlene is a certified life coach who is passionate about writing, speaking and teaching.

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Last Updated on October 14, 2020

The Art of Humble Confidence

The Art of Humble Confidence

To be confident or not to be confident, that is the question. I’m not sure about you, but I’ve been a bit confused about all this discussion about the subject of confidence. Do you really need to be more confident or should you try to be more humble? I think the answer is both – you just have to know where to use it.

East VS West – Confidence, It’s a Cultural Thing

In typical Western countries, the answer to the confidence debate is obvious – more is better. Our heros are rebellious, independent and shoot first, ask questions later. I think this snippet of dialog from The Matrix sums it up best:

Agent Smith – “We’re willing to wipe the slate clean, give you a fresh start. All that we’re asking in return is your cooperation in bringing a known terrorist to justice.”
Neo – “Yeah. Well, that sounds like a pretty good deal. But I think I may have a better one. How about, I give you the finger”
[He does]
Neo -“ …and you give me my phone call.”

In Eastern countries, the tone is often considerably different. Elders are supposed to be revered not dismissed. The words ‘guru,’ meaning a teacher, and the philosophy of dharma, loosely translated to mean ‘duty,’ come from here. In Eastern cultures humility and respect are more important than confidence.

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These perspectives are generalizations, but it shows how the confidence debate goes back deep into our culture. I think that both extremes of pure confidence or pure humility are misguided. Instead of rectifying this situation by simply blending the two: becoming somewhat humble, somewhat confident all the time, I believe the answer is to know when to be confident and when to be humble.

Humble Confidence – Know When to Use It

I’m going to make another broad generalization. I believe that virtually every relationship you are going to have is going to fit into one of two major archetypes, either master or student. In peer relationships this master/student role may switch frequently, but it is extremely rare that the relationship never leans to one side.

In the master role, you are displaying confidence to get what you want. This is public speaker, leader or seducer. Being the master has advantages. You have more control and ability to influence from this role.

The student role is the opposite. You are intentionally displaying humility. This is the student, disciple or follower. Being the student has advantages too. You can learn a lot more in this role and are more likely to win the trust of the other person.

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Know When to Shut Up and Learn

If you are a typical Westerner, you are probably already thinking about which role you prefer. Being the leader is great. You get respect and a higher status. Most of all you get a greater degree of control.

But the problem is that you can’t and shouldn’t always try to be the leader. Trying to assume that role without the skills, resources or status to back it up will lead to conflict. More importantly, there are many times when you purposely want to display humility. Some of the benefits to the student role include:

  • You learn more.
  • Smooths relationships.
  • Makes others more willing to lend a helping hand.

Knowing when taking the humble route is to your advantage. It is far easier to get mentors and advisors if you use humility rather than arrogance. A small sacrifice to your ego can open up the potential to learn a lot.

Confidence to Persuade, Humility to Learn

In reality almost no relationship is as clearly defined as master/student. Within our connections, people have overlapping areas of expertise. I might be an expert in blogging to a non-blogger, but they might be an expert in finance. In each area there are different roles to take.

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Before any interaction ask yourself what the purpose is. Are you trying to learn or persuade?

Persuasion requires confidence. If you are trying to sell, instruct or lead you need to display the confidence to match your message. But learning requires humility. You won’t learn anything if you are constantly arguing with your professors, mentors or employers. Taking a dose of humility and temporarily making yourself a student gives you the opportunity to absorb.

Persuade Less, Learn More

Persuasion is great for immediate effect, but learning matters over the long-haul. Instead of washing over all your communication with pure confidence, look for opportunities to learn. Persuading someone to follow you may give you an immediate boost of satisfaction, but it doesn’t last. Learning, however, is an investment for the future.

Whenever I make a connection with someone and realize they have a skill or understanding I want, I am careful to express humility in that area. That means listening with what they say even if I don’t immediately agree and being patient with their response. This method often drastically cuts down the time I need to spend on trial and error to learn by myself.

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Confidence/Humility Doesn’t Replace Communication Skills

This approach of selectively using confidence and humility for different purposes doesn’t replace communication skills. Humility isn’t going to work if the other person thinks you’re an irritating whiner. Confidence won’t work if the entire room thinks you are an arrogant jerk. Knowing how to display these two qualities takes practice.

The next time you are about to enter into an interaction ask yourself why you are doing it. Are you trying to persuade or learn? Depending on which you can take a completely different tact for far better results.

Featured photo credit: BBH Singapore via unsplash.com

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