Actionable Ideas #6: Abundance Mindset, Act As If, PPP Updates

Idea #1: Abundance Mindset

Themes: creativity, ingenuity, collaboration

In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey explains that the scarcity mindset is the belief that there will never be enough, and we must compete over the same pie. In contrast, the abundance mindset refers to the paradigm that there is plenty out there for everybody. Abundance mindset breeds creativity and inventiveness, as there is more of the pie to create and capture, an attitude famously exhibited by Jeff Bezos. Think of it as creating more TAM rather than fighting over market share.

Action item: ask yourself the following questions the next time you feel the "tug of scarcity" – if I were to perceive something useful here, what would it be? What's going right in this situation? What resources might I have that I’m not seeing yet?

Idea #2: Act As If Principle

Themes: self-management, performance, confidence

If you want a quality, act as if you already have it. The “act as if” principle is the idea that acting as if we feel an emotion produces actual physiological changes in the body. As Richard Wiseman explains in Act As If Principle, a real change takes place in our body when we behave as though we are experiencing an emotion. This applies to attitudes and mindsets as well. A humorous example from Dale Carnegie on public speaking is to “talk as if your audience owed you money.”

Action item: what quality do you want to embody? The next opportunity you have, act as if you’re that person – have fun with it, this is an experiment – then notice how you feel.

Idea #3: Progress, Plans, and Problems (PPP) Updates

Themes: efficiency, productivity, progress

Progress Plans and Problems is a highly efficient way to provide reliable updates to stakeholders. Use this as your 1on1 agenda with your manager, monthly check ins with mentors, friends, etc. A PPP update should be short and look like the following: (1) Progress: three things achieved in the past period (e.g. week, month) (2) Plans: three things you plan to do in the next period (3) Problems: three problems you expect to encounter and need help with. PPP allows you to be strategic, intentional, and impactful in your communication. 

Action item: proactively use PPP in your next 1on1. In less than 5 minutes, inform your manager of your progress, plans, and problems. Extra credit: send a PPP update email to your stakeholders and friends on a recurring basis.