Don't Ring the Bell - Develop a Success Mindset

Some time ago, I was going through an extraordinarily difficult time with my business. I felt like I'd tried everything, that I had nowhere left to turn, and that the universe was telling me to give it up. For every step forward I made, I seemed to take a step back at the very next turn. I had no desire to keep pushing, and there was nothing left. As I relayed this to my coach at the time, the emotion of it all overwhelmed me and I started crying. I couldn't do it any more. I had no more energy to keep trying. It was over.

My mindset at the time was certainly a challenge for all her coaching skills! So what did she do? She told me a story. She told me the story of a movie, GI Jane. I hadn't seen the movie but immediately went out and brought it home. If you've seen the movie you know the story, but it's the visual and the symbol of the bell that's important.

GI Jane, up against the male marines, had it tough (as you would imagine). Anyone who couldn't endure the test of extreme physical marine training could ring the bell. Once they rang the bell, it signified the end of their test and the end of their career in the marines. Ring the bell; game over.

Close to ringing the bell and ready to give up, nothing left, no more to give, GI Jane is about to ring the bell. BUT, somewhere deep within her she finds the mental strength to turn it around and focus on not letting them defeat her. She was exhausted and physically shattered, but her mental power kicked in and she kept going. She never rang the bell and was a stronger human being because of it.

I always thought that when people talk of someone who ‘gave up too soon' or gave up when ‘success was just around the corner', it never made any sense. I always thought that it was ridiculous because who knows how far away success is, or that if you just keep going (and going) success will be yours.

Now I understand because I put it in the context of the bell. I f you've never been standing next to that bell, and refused to ring it in spite of your overwhelming desire to do so, then you probably won't understand.

Sometimes you may need to correct course, or change your perspective, but if you have the mental capacity to not ring the bell, I believe you have the capability to achieve anything.


Jenny Stilwell is a business mentor, consultant, speaker and author of ‘Small Business CEO'. Her unusual credentials combining senior executive and CEO roles, with starting and growing several successful consulting practices of her own, make her well qualified as a specialist in helping others create the right structure and strategy for growth.

Jenny provides one-on-one mentoring and CEO advice, consulting services and a range of resources across all aspects of managing a growing compa...

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