Top Innovations Mindstates : Strengthen your Resilience.

At Anatellô we use the word ‘mindstate’ to describe the wide range of personality traits, processes and emotional states that influence our performance. If you cannot access the resourceful ‘mindstates’ of innovation then you are unlikely to realize the full creative and revenue potential, of your ideas and insights.

One of the defining traits of successful innovators from Thomas Edison (electric lightbulb) through Georges to Mistral (Velcro) to James Dyson (hoovers and driers) is emotional resilience. These inventors all took many years to take their ideas through the various development stages to patent and commercial launch, and experienced many setbacks along the way.
So how do we access these important innovation mindstates such as emotional resilience?

There are many different ways, and on Anatellô innvoation training courses we help teams firstly develop an awareness of what the different resourceful mindstates for innovation are, and then provide strategies to help them access them exactly when they need them.

The Power of Great Questions.

One great way to access resourceful mindstates is by the power of great questions. Questions act as commands to the brain to instruct it to access the right information.

Brains are super powerful computers. Unfortunately, as we are not provided with a "user manual" – it’s hard to always get the best out of them. So, when our innovation project is not going well there is a danger that our minds lead us into a spiral of decline.

Perhaps the proof of concept has not worked, or the latest prototype was a disappointment. Perhaps a new ingredient is not delivering everything you wanted it to. These things happen on innovation projects. But the danger is that when something doesn’t go according to plan, instead of keeping things in proportion, we can start to remember some of the other things that did not work on this project or even a previous one. We can worry about how the news may not go down well with our colleagues, we can feel stressed by heightened time pressures

Suddenly all the things we have to do to make up this ground and keep the project moving forward seems daunting. We can feel overwhelmed.

At such a time, we may start to ask : Why my project? Why was I such an idiot to not check x,y or z? Why is this project so impossible?

Poor Quality Questions are Poor Quality Commands.

Such exclamations might be understandable, but be warned! If you start asking yourself these types of questions – you’re giving your brain poor quality commands. In return, your brain might just humour you by coming up with unresourceful answers.  You ask why? You’re brain responds “Because you are an idiot”.

This is the point when your brain is no longer serving you. Your mindstate has become completely unresourceful. It would not matter how long you spend on the project, if you don’t believe you can overcome these issues, and if you can’t engage your brain to help you, then you will get completely stuck.

And this happens sometimes, innovators experience problems on their projects and they believe it is down to a technical problem that cannot be overcome.

Sometimes though such technical problems can be overcome. All that is required is for the innovation team to access the resourceful mindstates to try again.

This is where we need emotional resilience. We need to access the resourceful states to direct out minds to come up with creative thoughts rather than dwelling on what has gone wrong.

Questions to Help You Access Resourceful Mindstates.

It’s not easy, but questions can help. Here are a few we could be asking:-

  • What’s good about this? (setback on the project)
  • What’s not perfect yet?
  • What am I prepared to do to start the innovation project moving forward?
  • What am I no longer prepared to do?
  • How can I enjoy the process until the innovation project is back on track?

By asking these types of questions you are directing your thinking into resourceful areas, and your brain will respond. It will go where you want it to!

Next time you’re struggling on your innovation project, think about challenging your brain to come up with better solutions, by instructing it with a different type of command.

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