Armen Shirvanian

Armen Shirvanian writes words of wisdom about mindset, communication, relationships, and related topics at Timeless Information. You can follow him on Twitter at @Armen.

Using Hindsight As Your Foresight


The same failures you might look back on as your biggest mistakes are also your future mistakes if you don’t make a change. It isn’t enough to just notice past failures, because that is avoidance of working through them. It is foolish to talk like you were a different person two years ago, when it is likely that you are very similar to the person you were when you made some error. It isn’t appealing to accept this, but it has to be done if you want to find ways to prevent a similar occurrence.

Money Example

Let’s say you made a huge error years ago that indirectly ended up costing you a lot of money. This could be a valid example for many folks. If this were the case, you would get no benefit in telling everyone about your failure to hold on to the money, or about how you lost it. On the other hand, you need to see what it was about you that caused the large loss of money. Maybe it came down to you being too shy to challenge someone when they left your assets in a precarious situation, or you were too afraid to fire an employee when your business was failing, and so you lost even larger sums in the process. Regardless of the situation, you need to see where your weakness was.

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Focusing Your Mind On The Difficult

focus your mind

Competitively, that which is easy gets you very little. If it is easy, anyone can do it, so it is of low value. Tying your shoes in a special way will get you no recognition from anyone except maybe a kindergartener. Doing a couple of simple math problems to review for a placement test won’t help you much. The point of tests and the free market is to separate those that go a bit further.

Doing items at a medium level of difficulty will get you somewhat valuable gains. Running 3 miles to train for a half-marathon will keep you on pace, and will take a good amount of your energy. This will be worth it to you, but it won’t amaze anyone else. While average types of actions don’t necessarily hurt you in any way, sticking at the median level leaves you unable to build up real momentum. Awards, support, and recognition don’t tend to arrive for those who are sticking to doing the average. It isn’t that others don’t want to acknowledge your work, but that someone else’s work shines brighter than yours, moving yours into the invisible category. On the other hand, it is good to keep some of your regular habits in this category.

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How Re-Structuring Routine Interactions With Others Can Promote Positive Growth


Imagine waking up, greeting one positive person, receiving an e-mail from a person passionate about what they are doing, then sending an e-mail to a person about something you are passionate about, before you go about your other activities. A daily experience like this is not out of the realm of your potential routine. Getting to a point like this involves adjusting who you interact with, and approaching the people you don’t want to interact with, but have to, through a new mindset.

First, I want to preface this by saying this isn’t meant to create a pseudo-reality that is separate from the one others are in. At the same time, there are some who are in a state of growth who are positive to be around, and promote your good health and low stress, and there are some who have a negative demeanor, with little to no concern for you, who will likely only end up raising your blood pressure and stress levels. I often point out that personalities are fairly fixed in place, so the same person that causes you unnecessary stress today is very likely the one who will do so at some time in the future.

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Switching to a Bold Mindset


The person who makes decisions quicker and more resolutely flies ahead of the person who is slow and weak in their ways. Notice that I didn’t point out that the first person was always making the “right” decisions. That point is irrelevant in the longer-term. Using simple probabilities, the person that makes more decisions in the face of pressure from others will have more options on the table, and having more options is always more advantageous than having less options. This is true because the person with more options has just as many as the one with the lesser amount, with the advantages that come with them, and also has others that can only add more in terms of value.

Preparation Is A Component Leading To Boldness

Now that this is shown to be the case, how can you become the person who makes decisions quickly and resolutely? The idea here is to see what slows you down, or stops you instantly, when decision-making time comes around. When you go to a store to buy apples, and then see the apples at the store, the decision to pick them up is nearly instant. On the other hand, if you see oranges you didn’t plan on buying, your decision of whether to buy them or not will be slower. The difference between the apples and oranges here is the preparation you made before going to the store in planning for what you would want to buy.

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