Here at Kiht Collective we are all about having fun, getting sweaty and growing. Mindset is such a huge part of that growth. Your mindset affects every single part of your life, how you see the world, how you react to situations and how you view yourself. We sat down with 'put yourself first' coach Kat Horrocks to discuss all things mindset.
Kat firstly, can you intro yourself and what you do.
My name’s Kat, I’m a women’s life and career coach based in Manchester, working with women all over the world! I’m dedicated to empowering women to put themselves first and achieve their goals. I offer 1:1 and group coaching and also host a weekly podcast show called Put Yourself First!
Q1. Firstly, why does mindset matter?
Mindset is everything! It impacts every area of our lives and is with us from the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep. Human consciousness means we have a constant internal dialogue going on. Working on our mindset helps us to ensure that dialogue is positive and serves our greater good, although it can very easily do the opposite if left unchecked.
Q2. How do you go about working out the type of mindset you have?
Observe your daily thoughts and words. Catch the language, phrases and words you’re using regularly, and try to write them down in your phone or a notebook.
Are you constantly down on yourself? Or do you generally have a positive outlook?
Are you the first to moan and complain? Or are you the first to look for a solution?
Do you take ownership and responsibility when you mess up? Or do you wallow in self-loathing and beat yourself up? Or are you somewhere in between them all?
It’s all about reflection and self-awareness without judgement. Writing things down really helps you unpick the language you use and gain a more objective perspective.
Q3. What type of mindsets are there? Are there good/bad mindsets, or things to look out for, red flags etc?
Carol Dweck pioneered this concept of a ‘Fixed’ mindset and a ‘Growth mindset. If someone has a fixed mindset, they believe their qualities, thoughts and circumstances are fixed. Therefore, any efforts to change them are pointless, right? They believe they are destined to be unlucky, broke, unintelligent or whatever variable applies.
Someone with a growth mindset on the other hand believes that growth and change is always possible and an inevitable part of life. These are people who, no matter what life throws at them, believe they can always do more, be more, have more.
Fundamentally, one person believes that their efforts have a direct impact on the happiness and fulfilment they experience in life; the other doesn’t believe their effort has any effect at all. If someone has this victim mentality, that’s a huge red flag that they’re stuck in a fixed mindset.
It’s also important to note your mindset shifts between different areas of your life and even how you feel that day. It’s easy to slip back into old patterns of negative thought if you’re having a hard time (or even if you’ve had a bad night’s sleep!), just as it’s easy to feel powerless in an area you’re struggling with whilst feeling really on top of and positive about another area.
Q4. Once you have identified your mindset, what are the next steps?
Once you’ve caught a thought in the moment, the work begins with reframing it.
Reframing involves flipping the script on the aspect of your mindset you want to improve. For example, if you have a fixed mindset in the gym and often say, “I’ll never be as fit as the other girls in this class, because my body’s not built to run/be strong/look like that” use Gabrielle Bernstein’s AMAZING method of reframing that I share with every client.
Catch the thought
Recognise you are having the thought. The thought is not you, it’s just popped into your consciousness. Observe without judgement
Forgive yourself for having the thought
Again, without judgement, without beating yourself up. Always approach this work with kindness and gentleness towards yourself
Flip the script and reframe the thought to be something that shines light and power on your potential, your efforts, the possibility for you and your life. In this example, you could say, “Every time I step into this gym, I’m getting fitter and stronger.” Can you see how this simple phrase focuses on you, your potential and the growth that will come from your efforts?
Once you recognise the areas you’re working on, you might want to have go-to phrases, affirmations and positive reframes to grab when you find yourself in that situation again. You can replace these in your mind when that dialogue kicks in, you can say them out loud wherever you can (I talk to myself in the car!!) or you can write them out somewhere you can see them every day (next to the mirror in your bathroom or bedroom is a great place).
Q5. Can you improve your mindset? Or is it more about understanding it and learning to work with it?
Absolutely! Whilst developing a growth mindset won’t happen overnight, it can be done over time and with consistent work. You’ve got to have patience with yourself though and remember that, even though you’ll want to beat yourself up for having negative thoughts, that’s going to be counter-intuitive. Positive self-talk matters.
Q6. Can you tell us about your mindset and how it has changed?
I’m very blessed to have had a pretty strong growth mindset from a young age. I think this comes from my amazing parents who always told me I could do anything and be anything I wanted if I worked hard and put my mind to it. Kids really need that I think!
That’s not to say I’ve never struggled with my mindset, of course I have. As I said, we all have our areas of struggle and self-doubt. For example, that fixed mindset example with fitness was totally me growing up! I was so uncomfortable in my body as a teen, chubby, had a beige diet and hated fitness. I had to unlearn that conditioning and what I believed and told myself daily for years, in order to change my mindset when it came to health and my body.
Q7. How does coaching play a part in mindset?
Coaching is so amazing for transforming your mindset and strengthening a growth mindset even further. Coaching involves mirroring and repeating back to you all those thoughts, phrases and language you’re using as you get stuff off your chest and talk about a situation, whether that’s a goal you’re working on or an area you’re struggling with. Often, we don’t even recognise or hear ourselves speak, because we’re in such a routine with that dialogue.
As a coach, I’m so present and observant with clients, and often point out small things like,
“You often apologise during sessions. Why is that?” or
“I always hear you refer to your business as ‘my small business’. That language is really interesting, isn't it? Tell me more about why you choose that wording”
It’s these small observations that can bring huge lessons and growth opportunities when it comes to our mindset work. It’s also a really calm, non-judgemental space to just talk it out! The women I work with rarely, if ever, get an opportunity to just explore and discover how they’re feeling and thinking about their current circumstances and goals.
Q8. What is the difference between group and 1:1 coaching that you offer and why do you offer both?
In 1:1 coaching I am completely present and focused on that woman and her individual goals, desires, feelings and circumstances. It’s totally intuitive and adaptive, and we often dig into this work over a 3 or 6 month period of time. One session might be really strategic, focused on her goal setting and action tasks, or it might be something that has thrown a spanner in the works like a stressful day at work and we need to discuss that before moving forward. I’m always bringing it back to our objectives and the goals she set out to accomplish (whether personal or professional), but it’s also about working alongside her as a team, to make sure she’s putting herself first and feeling empowered. In 1:1 work, I can dig into really specific and tailored exercises, questions and tools that will benefit her, as well as any mentoring or advice she needs. 1:1 coaching is really high-level support and accountability - ‘professional cheerleader’ is my alternative job title!
In group coaching, it’s all about the power of sisterhood! Something absolutely magical happens when you bring a group of like-minded, purpose driven women together to share their lives and their goals with each other. It’s a real ‘hive mind’ feel, where everyone gets involved, asking questions, sharing advice, and cheering each other on to keep going or get back up when they face a hurdle. Whilst 1:1 coaching is a partnership, group coaching requires me to step into leadership, facilitating an experience and conversation that every woman in the group can relate to and take something from. The group coaching is delivered in fortnightly live sessions, where I focus on a particular topic and share prompts, exercises and tools we can discuss and explore as a group. The topics are broader, but 9 times out of 10 I find everyone in the group is saying, “Wow this is me!”, “Yep I really struggle with this too” and that really adds to the sense of community. We’re all in this together, whether we’re tackling fear of failure, negative self-talk or people pleasing.
I know that at different stages of their personal growth journey, women will need different levels of support. It’s all about what’s going to support you and your goals. Some women thrive in that group environment and need that ‘hive mind’ support, some women need that tailor-made support and close connection. I’m here to serve and empower wherever you’re at on that scale, and also offer an affordable way to access coaching and support if you’re not yet ready to invest in high level 1:1 work. I also offer limited VIP spots for the group coaching, which includes a 90-minute 1:1 session with me, so great if you want the best of both worlds!
Q9. If someone reading this is totally new to the idea of mindset and coaching, can you recommend a resource or good place to start?
The best resource you can buy is a notebook. Leave it by your bed or in your bag and write down those thoughts as they pop up! Then try to reframe them.
If you want to learn more, some books I recommend that have been passed on to me from my coaches/friends over the years:
Mindset by Carol Dweck
You are a Badass by Jen Sincero
The Comparison Cure by Lucy Sheridan (Lucy is amazing to follow on Instagram too)
The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
Q10. What is one of the biggest lessons you’ve learnt on your journey so far?
The more time we give ourselves, the more time and headspace we have for what (and who) truly matters in life.
Q11. If you had a giant billboard that you could write anything on for everyone to see, what would it say?
PUT YOURSELF FIRST! It’ll change the world.
Huge thank you to Kat for such an amazing interview!
If you want to know more about Kat's coaching, listen to her podcast or show her love on social media, we've popped all the links below for you:
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