Related pages: caring for the human spirit

Spirit Wolf: The Two Competing Wolves

Spirit wolf is a powerful spiritual symbol in many native cultures. There is an old native American parable of a grandfather who was teaching his grandson about the two wolves that reside in each of us. One wolf is the courage wolf. The other wolf is the fear wolf. They are constantly fighting for supremacy in our being. The grandson asked the grandfather which spirit wolf will win. The grandfather answered, "the one you feed the most."

Spirit Wolf: Feeding the Spirit Wolf of Courage

The spirit wolf of courage is very much connected to the qualities of love that are our foundation. The keystone of our mindset of a champion arch is your spirit and the spirit wolf of courage is dependent on being fed love. Perfect love casts out fear. Courage is the act of conquering or overcoming fear. It demonstrates love qualities.

In this context, I am not referring to spirituality directly. I am talking about the spirit we see that comes out when you face adversity. The spirit wolf of fear is fed by adversity and challenges and negativity. We are talking about starving the spirit wolf of fear and feeding the spirit wolf of courage. Specifically, I am talking about how your mindset shapes who you are. Your growth mindset or the mindset of a champion should dominate your life. Let me review the growth and fixed mindset and the mindset of defeatism and mindset of a champion.

Spirit Wolf of Fear and the Fixed Mindset

As you look at these characteristics of a fixed mindset and the mindset of defeatism, doesn't it seem as though the spirit wolf of fear is playing a role in these traits? 

Fixed Mindset 

Core belief: Intelligence is static

Leads to a desire to look smart and therefor a tendency to:

  • avoid challenges
  • become defensive and give up easily
  • sees effort as pointless or worse their success is outside of their control
  • ignores useful negative feedback
  • feels threatened by others success

Mindset of the Defeatism

Core belief: I am not at the cause of what happens in my life

Leads to a passive attitude and a tendency to believe:

  • other people are the reason for their failures or set backs
  • good things don’t happen to them
  • hard work doesn’t get you anywhere
  • good things only happen to the privileged

Which leads to a tendency to:

  • avoid challenges
  • become defensive and give up easily
  • sees effort as pointless or worse their success is outside of their control
  • ignores useful negative feedback
  • feels threatened by others success

become less likely to have the characteristics of love define them 

Isn't fear lurking in the shadows at the very least behind things like avoiding challenges, giving up easily, feeling threatened by others success? 

Spirit Wolf of Courage and the Growth Mindset

The spirit wolf of courage enables us to face our fears and overcome them. The spirit wolf of courage takes control of your emotions. It can be identified with these traits:

  • Sharp intelligence, deep connection with instincts
  • Appetite for freedom
  • Expression of strong instincts
  • the importance of social connections - love

Look at the traits under this description of growth mindset and the mindset of a champion and ask yourself is the spirit of courage isn't at play.

Growth Mindset 

Core belief: Intelligence can be developed

Leads to a desire to learn and therefor a tendency to:

  • embrace challenges
  • persist in the face of setbacks
  • sees effort as a path to mastery
  • learns from criticism
  • finds lessons and inspiration in the success of others

As a result the attain higher levels of achievement

Mindset of the Champion

Core belief: I am at the cause of what happens in my life

Leads to a competitive attitude and a tendency to believe:

  • they are in control of how to interpret what happens to them
  • there is no such thing as failure only results
  • I can achieve anything I set my mind to
  • There is no substitute for hard work
  • People are your greatest resource
  • I am a master of my destiny

Which leads to a tendency to

  • embrace challenges
  • persist in the face of setbacks
  • sees effort as a path to mastery
  • learns from criticism
  • finds lessons and inspiration in the success of others
  • have a loving mindset
  • have faith

Isn't courage playing a role in these characteristics?

The Spirit Wolf and the Keystone of the Mindset of a Champion Arch

The internal battle of the two spirit wolves is something we all must face. Recognizing that we can feed the courage wolf is at the heart of training your spirit of a champion mindset. The keystone of the spirit of a champion arch.

The keystone is the final piece placed during construction of an arch and locks all the voussoirs into position, allowing the arch to bear the stress of the load. Like that, your spirit locks the other four components of the arch in place allowing them all to bear the stress of the load. If you follow our training order, you will have already shaped this stone with much of the work you did previously and in this final stage of the training you now need to place it. In our metaphor, this involves building and shaping the rituals that will firmly wedge this final piece to the arch in place and give the structure permanence and beauty. In the metaphor of the spirit wolf, you feed the courage wolf regularly with the food it thrives on - love, faith, faithfulness, relationships.

In the training course and when I do my private coaching sessions this is the part where we reinforce and expand the power of the morning and evening rituals. I have clients create an “I am” mantra around their new beliefs. We work on routines of quiet reflection or meditation or prayer depending on your worldview. We clarify your goals and do a check on your values and the synchronicity between the values and the goals. We do not take short cuts here. This is the final piece to the structure of the training with the final piece being the laying of the roadbed – your financial mindset. That is the general formula which is highly effective. 

If spirit is so important, why isn’t it our foundation? It is. Love and spirit go hand in hand. Love feeds the spirit wolf of courage. Perfect love casts out fear and fear cripples.

Love is patient. People with a growth mindset exhibit patience. Anyone who embraces challenges is also naturally patient. A challenge inevitably requires patience to work through the problem. If you are impatient you will tend not embrace challenges because you won’t be able to see it through to the end. Patience is also necessary for someone to think about effort as a pathway. The very idea of a pathway hints at something that takes time to go along. A pathway to master then takes time and requires patience with your effort.

Love does not envy. People with a growth mindset find lessons and inspiration in other people’s success.

Love is not proud. Not being proud allows you to view criticism as an important part of learning. Finding inspiration in other people’s success tends to keep you from becoming too proud or vain and it also is honoring of others.

Love does not dishonor others, it in fact honors others. Love is not self-seeking. If you are not self-seeking, criticism again can be viewed as an important part of learning. Because a loving person is not self-seeking learning new things is embraced. They aren’t concerned if it wasn’t their idea or their original thought. Also, if it is all about you, criticism is at best dismissed and at worst leads to anger and hostility toward the person who provide the critique.

Love is not easily angered. Because love is not easily angered someone who has it can readily accept challenges and criticism.

Love keeps no record of wrongs which would mean criticism could be embraced. 

Love always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Well, one of the direct characteristics of a growth mindset is perseverance and trust and hope are integral to perseverance. You see, love really is a foundation to build your success on and it loops back to the keystone which is your spirit. With no keystone the structure cannot be completed and with no foundation and the structure can’t even be built.

The Fruits of the Spirit

The other aspect of your spirit that I want to mention has to do with the attitude and actions you take because of the spirit you have. While growth mindset may be the most influential part of your success, the other fruits that one should see from a spirit that leads to success and fulfillment is seeking justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly. I am not going to go a great deal into this in part because the foundation of love will also lead to these characteristics.

Secondly, there is a political mindset that influences one’s notion of what justice is and what it means to be merciful and I want to avoid the political aspects of those. You do though need to think about what those terms really mean. What does being just and merciful mean? I believe those are important questions to discuss within a family, community, and nation. Obviously as you move beyond the family it becomes political, but hopefully in a free society we can have that debate and discussion in schools, on college campuses, and in a political arena. How I define it did impact who I looked at as models of success.

Justice included the idea that a person wants to be impartial and fair in making decisions and handing out punishments or consequences for inappropriate actions. If the story is true about Thomas Watson, the founder of IBM, not accepting a young executive’s resignation for making a million-dollar mistake, but instead saying why would he accept the resignation when he just spent $1,000,000 educating the young executive would be an example of a leader showing justice and mercy.

Probably the most powerful story for me is the story in the bible about the woman caught in the act of adultery. When the Jewish leaders brought her to Jesus and saying to him the law demands she be stoned to death Jesus did not disavow the law. Instead, he said let he who is without sin cast the first stone. The crowd walked away. Jesus then did not make light of the sin of adultery, but told the women that he would not condemn her and for her to go and sin no more. That is a great story of both justice and mercy. Mercy being the idea of having compassion for people especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power.

Spirit Wolf and the Growth Mindset Training Academy curriculum

If you desire a true training program, take the first step to training a mindset of a champion – be decisive. Invest in yourself and become aware of the ripple effect of training your mindset, and becoming a champion of life.

This is NOT for Everybody. Here's Who I Can Help:

I do not need to enroll 10 people every month. I'm VERY picky about who I'll speak with, and I have a strict (but reasonable) set of criteria that needs to be met in order for us to proceed:

1.  You need to be able to and willing to provide structure and discipline for whoever will be going through this training – including yourself.

This offer is for those who will commit to following through by creating the appropriate physical space, emotional support, and accountability needed to complete the training. If you are not prepared to lovingly hold members of your family, team, or cohort accountable if they haven’t completed their daily tasks - no offense, but this is not for you. If you want to do this for yourself and you are unwilling to find an accountability partner to hold you accountable - no offense, but this is not for you.

2. You MUST be willing to use your influence as a parent, partner, coach, employer, friend, or colleague to guide, encourage, and excite those enrolled so they will be an elite champion and complete the training.

If you have a history of not being very supportive, or feel like you can’t be an encourager, or worse, are too self-seeking to do what is necessary to help others complete this training - no offense, but this is NOT for you.

Establishing a success loop with my clients is VERY important to me and this is a team approach to help prevent our students from being crippled by coddling. Please, be someone who doesn't mess around, and is serious about results.

That's it - if you meet BOTH of those requirements, we're good.

I encourage you to fill out the form below to schedule a private conversation with myself or my associate so we can have a conversation about this curriculum and see if it is a fit for you. If it is right for you, we have the ability to make it happen so fill in the form below and schedule that all important conversation.

Check out these other pages

Caring for the human spirit

Elevating the human spirit

Emotional Hygiene

Freedom and the human spirit

Happiness and the human spirit

Parts of the human spirit

Power of the human spirit

What is the human spirit?

Please consider joining our private Facebook group: Mastering Your Growth Mindset

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