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How to Start Thinking Like a Boss and Get Ahead


“A good leader leads the people from above them. A great leader leads the people from within them.” -M.D. Arnold

Managers and leaders, if you want to be successful, you need to start thinking like a boss. That doesn’t mean being demanding or ruthless; it means being strategic, forward-thinking, and focused on your goals. In addition, to reach your full potential, you must search for opportunities to elevate yourself to the next level. And for that, you need a boss mentality.

Take responsibility for everything you do

Taking ownership of your actions will ensure you make good decisions and manage your behavior prudently and responsibly. Further, it is an empowering reminder that you have control over your life and environment.

  • Take Responsibility: Taking responsibility for your actions requires the realization that you play a role in every situation or experience and, hence, have some responsibility over the outcomes and consequences.
  • Stop Blame Others: Blaming keeps you safe from looking at the gap between who you believe yourself to be and who you are. But in so doing, blaming also prevents you from being able to grow and change. 
  • Self-Reflection: Taking time to reflect allows you to review what mistakes you have made, what you have accomplished, and the lessons you decide to retain. It also ensures that you enjoy the journey and find pride in the result.
  • Don’t Internalize Judgment: Fear of judgment occurs because people naturally require acceptance. However, it is impossible to be liked and accepted by everyone. In the long run, it will lead to depression and anxiety. It is also important not to compare yourself to others.
  • Stop making excuses: making excuses is a natural human response – we are social animals, and we care what others think about us and want to fit in. Rather than face uncomfortable conversations and feelings, we make excuses and avoid responsibility.

Note: when the people that you surround yourself with will respect and trust you more because they know that you take responsibility for your actions. (think like a boss vs. employee mindset)

Take pride in your work and yourself.

Taking pride means that you feel satisfied with your contributions. Further, taking pride in your work ensures that you value your efforts to help customers, create products, and support your business.

  • Make a difference: This means taking actions that improve the work environment for everyone. One pleasant side effect of making a difference is the rewarding feeling we are left with.
  • Treat people with respect: Treating people well means accepting somebody for who they are, even when their views or values are different than yours. Respect (the people) in your relationships builds trust, safety, and mutual respect.
  • Set yourself up for success: If you want to succeed, you must set goals. Without goals, you will lack focus and direction. Goal setting ensures you take control of your path and provides you with self-motivation and benchmarks for determining progress.

In sum, taking pride in your work can boost your self-esteem. People who take pride in their work are confident in their ability to provide value. For example, taking pride in a great idea or your own business success is healthy. Remember to stay humble.

Note: Many if not, most people feel their work is not important enough to take pride in. When you think like a boss; whether you have your own business, serve customers at a coffee shop, or are a medical doctor; when you work hard, do not be afraid to take pride in your job.

Value & Protect Your Time

“Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” -Scott Peck

To value your time, you must understand your priorities and put them first. What’s more, it’s critical to know what causes unnecessary stress and eliminate it from your life whenever possible. Then, train yourself to remember that time is your most important asset. 

  • Be assertive: assertiveness allows you to express and communicate your needs and opinions effectively. It is also important to respect the opinions and beliefs of others. Being assertive helps to boost your self-value and earn the respect of others. 
  • Set boundaries: establishing boundaries is good for you and the people around you. When your boundaries are clear, people will understand your expectations, know what you are and aren’t ok with, and adjust their behavior. The people who don’t respect your boundaries are the ones you need to remove from your life.
  • Be firm: firmness is vital to show respect for ourselves; the opposite of firmness is passive. Kindness and firmness are essential for positive discipline. For instance, to think like a boss means to say “no” in the business world and in your personal life.
  • Prioritize and manage time: time is our most precious resource; not money. More specifically, the ability to gift time to ourselves, and others, in a manner that fits our priorities. Moreover, learn good time management skills and spend your time effectively. 

Note: To realize success, learn how and when to say “no”, be respectful, firm, and focus on your own success. For example, a successful entrepreneur knows the importance of saying “no” and using that time to prioritize their own lives and success. 

Surround yourself with Good & Successful People

The people you surround yourself with are who you become. If you are around negative, insecure, or destructive peers, that negativity will rub off on you. Regardless of one’s mental strength, nobody is immune to a constant bombardment of negative energy and influences.

  • Let go of negative relationships: When you eliminate toxic people from your life, you demonstrate subconsciously that you value yourself and your well-being.
  • Get outside your comfort zone: Getting out of your comfort zone allows you to experience new things, grow, reach your true potential, and stay humble. 

Take ownership over your actions

Taking ownership means more than being responsible and accountable. Ownership means being resolute, solving problems, withdrawing from liability, and owning the consequences of actions in daily life. Ownership can be the cornerstone of one’s sense of leadership and self-concept.

Develop good habits and Routines

Good habits: good habits are positive behaviors that you live by and that help you stay focused. Examples include exercising, eating healthy, practicing meditation, and more. A person with good habits makes steady progress in achieving their goals, career objectives, and greater fulfillment. 

How to build a habit in 5 steps, according to science (CNN)

  • Visualize an habit and a goal
  • Write down the goal and habit on paper
  • Create a routine and add the new habit, make it fun
  • Follow the routine, add visual cues to remind you (sticky notes, etc) 
  • Reward yourself for following the routine until the new habit sticks
  • Repeat the routine everyday at the same time each day 

If you want to be successful, start behaving and thinking like a boss. Leaders must focus on their goals and look for opportunities to elevate things to the next level. That takes strategic thinking, forward-thinking, and a boss mentality. Are you ready to take your business or career to the next level? Contact us today for help reaching your goals.

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