9 Shortcuts to a Better Mindset

One of the things I love most about the brotherhood of coaches is how open most of us are to sharing ideas and learning from one another.

Below is an article written by one of my fellow Todd Durkin Mastermind brothers, Josh Phelan, who is doing great work up in Costa Mesa California at http://outofboundstraining.com/. Josh is a husband, father, and fellow fitness business owner.


9 Shortcuts to a Better Mindset by Josh Phelan

Plan Your Top 3 Priorities the Night Before. 

Did you know that the word “priorities” didn’t really exist until about 1940?

Why on earth does this matter? 

For starters, people only used the word priority.

Meaning there is one thing of utmost importance given the context. 

Now though, we oftentimes have too many priorities.

This is why I want you to focus on your top 3 for the day. 

When you try to do too many things, unfortunately most are not done to the best of our ability.

And oftentimes we procrastinate on the harder tasks, by doing the easier ones first. 

How does this help your mindset? 

Try implementing this practice daily, and watch your level of clarity and productivity reach new levels.

Most people aren’t really lazy, they just lack clarity. 

Surround Yourself with Those On the Next Level

This can sometimes be hard to do, but hear me out. 

Imagine you’ve just recovered from some major injuries. 

You’ve completed physical rehab and now you’ve got 2 new workout friends you made while in rehab.

Both of which were former professional athletes. 

What would happen if the three of you continued to workout together? 

Chances are, you would likely rise to a higher level in your physical abilities. 

And not because you’re all of the sudden a professional athlete, but because you had them there each day to help you, motivate you and push you. 

In fact, studies have found that when you have overweight friends, you’re more likely to become overweight. 

And when your friends had bad spending habits with their money, you’ll likely pick up on that as well. 

So be very careful on who you spend your time with in pursuit of your goals. 

Trash In = Trash Out

As my dad always said to us kids growing up, “Trash in equals trash out.” 

He was referring to the music or tv we’d listen or watch. 

Thankfully my parents guarded it very carefully. 

But there’s a lot of truth behind this simple statement. 

What you consistently put into your mind will ultimately come out. 

Try it. 

Chances are if you’re watching tv that is mostly violent, makes you feel afraid, and anxious, then you’re probably going to go about your day carrying those emotions with you. 

On the other hand, if you’re seeking out positivity, inspirational stories, and shows or stations that make you laugh, you’ll feel completely different. 

Start Your Morning Talking to Yourself

This is probably the weirdest advice you’ll hear all week, but don’t knock it until you try it. 

Most people have heard of affirmations – where you speak positively about yourself. 

I thought these were good until I learned about incantations. 

These take affirmations to the next level. 

Essentially you not only make positive statements about yourself. 

You also say them with as much energy and emotion as you can muster. 

Ever see those videos of the parent having their kid say great things about themselves in the bathroom mirror at the top of their lungs? 

Yea, those are incantations. 

You’re going to feel silly doing them, but they are one of the most powerful “exercises” I’ve come across as far as putting yourself into a better state of mind. 

Bonus points if you do it in the mirror. 

End the Day with Reflection

How often do you really stop and reflect on the day? 

Ever consider what was great about the day? Or where you could’ve improved? 

There is actually a tremendous amount to be learned from each day that goes by. 

Unfortunately, many people are just trying to get “through” the day instead of trying get “from” the day. 

Take the time before winding down for bed to consider the special moments, celebrate the small wins, and learn from your missteps. 

There’s tremendous untapped power from simply reflecting. 

Protect Your Sleep

I don’t know if sleep makes everything easier. 

But I do know without it, everything becomes harder. 

Don’t have a bedtime for yourself? 

Set one and stick to it. 

Aim to always get adequate sleep each night. 

Consider when you must wake-up in the morning and go to bed at an appropriate hour for you. 

Not everyone is the same and I do know a few outliers that somehow seem to run well on just 5 hours of sleep. 

But they’re the exception, not typically ideal for the rest of us. 

When you’re well rested, chances are you’re naturally going to be in a better mood than compared to going weeks being sleep deprived. 

Practice Gratitude

In a day and age like now, this seems perhaps more important than ever. 

There’s negativity everywhere. 

People say terrible things to each other on social media, in politics, on the news, at the office and so forth. 

Often times we hear stories of what’s wrong with the world and how bad things are getting. 

And yes, there are unfortunate events taking place all over. 

I’m not naïve nor am I asking you to be. 

But if that’s all we’re constantly intaking, it gets more challenging to stop and consider the good things we do have in life. 

Here’s a mind-blowing truth about how our minds work: 

If you focus on what you’re grateful for, you mind is unable to think about what it is fearful of at the exact same moment. 

Go ahead give it a try. 

Your mind will literally have to go back and forth between the two thoughts.

So when we’re thankful, it quite literally replaces our fear, worries & doubts. 

Reach Out More Often

You know those difficult times in life when you’re just going through some really challenging seasons? 

All too often we tend to close ourselves in rather than reach out. 

When in fact, these are the times we need to reach out and ask others for help. 

Even it’s just for them to listen.

There’s no shame in asking for help.

For some reason as we grow up, we tend to make ourselves feel silly for asking. 

Consider the worst case scenario in most instances: people say, “No.”

Okay, so what? 

Move on. 

Most people are happy and willing to help you. 

And we’re able to push through those difficult times in our life faster with others than if we were to do it alone. 


Be held accountable to someone. 

 Throughout my 10+ years in the fitness industry and being a life coach since 2015, I think accountability is crucial for most of us when it comes to reaching our goals. 

When you’re held accountable, you don’t slack off. 

You have someone who is not only cheering you on, but also putting your feet to the fire to ensure you do what you said you were going to do. 

It helps you to become a better human being. 

Accountability helps you to have and hold a higher standard. 

And with a higher standard comes better results. 

As far as finding the right person to hold you accountable, some of us are blessed with great friends who are truly gifted at this. 

But for most of us, it usually means we have to hire someone. 

This ins’t negative, if anything, now we have more skin in the game because we are financially invested. 

So whether you’re doing it with a spouse, family member, co-worker or coach, I want to encourage you to get someone to hold you accountable to your goals. 

This means there are rewards if you complete them and there are consequences if you do not. 

In summary: 

  1. Plan your top 3 the night before. 
  2. Surround yourself with those who are on the next level
  3. Remember, trash in = trash out
  4. Practice your incantations 
  5. End your day with reflection (bonus points for writing them down)
  6. Protect your sleep
  7. Count your blessings
  8. Reach out for help when you need it
  9. Protect your sleep

Thanks for reading! This post was written by Josh Phelan from OutofBoundsTraining.com