Biology against mental growth

Full Reading article: 14 minutes.   –      Just reading the bold´s: 3,5 minutes


“Biological and neuroscientific reasons why it’s so hard for us to adapt to change and grow constantly… will help us to understand why CHVMPION MIND works.”

Resistance to change is part of our biology, but the ability to overcome it can be strengthened within an adequate structure and the constant creation of efficient, mentally and biologically healthy habits.


When you change your habits, you change your ideas, your way of thinking. When you change your way of thinking, you change your life.


When the Greek philosopher Heraclitus said that “the only constant is the change” some 2,500 years ago, he could not imagine the radical pace of change in the 21st century. The current pace of technological development creates exponential change in all areas of our lives, including the way business is conducted. The ability of business leaders to survive – and thrive – correlates directly with their ability to adopt new skills, keep abreast of technological advances and the latest business practices, and adapt to the changing demands of employees and customers.


Adapting to change has always been vital for survival, but before we had more time to adapt. Today adaptation to change has to happen more quickly, and if I don’t adapt, I’m displaced.


How can we be better at accepting change? A relevant concept here is what psychologist Carol Dweck calls “growth mindset” – the belief that a certain attitude or attribute can change as long as we put our mind to it. Dweck calls the opposite way of thinking a “Fixed mindset”.


Of course, people with a generalized growth mentality-who believe in the possibility of change will be more likely to take risks or work for change. The best way to distinguish growth-minded people from fixed-minded peers is to observe their response to failure. The former will be more likely to see setbacks as a challenge to learn from, while the latter will see them as proof of their inadequacy.


Decades of scientific research show that having a growth mentality is an advantage. And yet, for most people, getting out of one’s comfort zone seems more difficult than following Nike’s motto, “Just do it!”. Having a fixed mindset doesn’t mean you can’t train to have a growth mindset, and even those who tend to have a growth mindset sometimes struggle to maintain it in situations that feel challenging or dangerous, in the sense of losing the comfort in which they are.


So why do so many of us find it difficult to invite significant change in our lives? Why are people reluctant to give up unsatisfactory work, start a new business, or even learn a new skill?


Let’s take a look at the obstacles to change.


Why “Just Do It” Doesn’t Always Work


It turns out that much of our resistance to change is determined by our biology. In our brain, the amygdala, a subcortical area of the brain linked to intense emotional arousal, is programmed to detect potential threats and react to them. Part of that reaction is the release of the hormone “Fight or flight”, cortisol.


Note that there is no “go with the flow” option in response to perceived danger.

We are programmed, neuronally speaking, to see the threat as an unacceptable situation.


Of course, not all changes are actually threating. Quite the opposite: As mentioned earlier, some may be necessary for our long-term growth. However, scientific evidence shows that the fewer real threats we are exposed to, the more we tend to interpret unknown stimuli as threatening. Modern society, with all its comforts, can conspire with our nervous system to foster aversion to change. And here a contradiction arises, for our neural networks, on the one hand, we are gaining in comfort because of the advances in our advanced societies, where we can avoid most of the external dangers, and on the other hand, the speed at which changes are beginning to occur, mainly due to technological advances, means that we hardly have time to detect whether they are threats or not. Before knowing if it is a threat, we already have it in our house, like “Alexa” that we allow it to enter our house because we hear from others that it is not a threat, but that in the end, 90% of those who have it, use it for the usual, that is, to listen to music, to know what the weather´s like today, and little more, that we do the same thing that our brain already knows how to do, but now in a different way, when we could do many more things.


Another possible contributing factor is our conditioning, the beliefs, and attitudes towards success, failure and towards ourselves that were typical of the environment in which we grew up. Now ingrained, they often operate at the subconscious level.


While understanding what blocks us is the first step toward success, it is important to devise strategies to “hack” into our biology and conditioning so that we can deliberately lean toward the growth mentality. And just as one goes to school to grow, or as an adult we choose courses to learn, or jobs where we know we can grow, what we are doing is freely choosing an environment, a structure that “forces” us to do different things so that our mind is more open and absolves new information, new beliefs, and even better, but more difficult, new habits that lead us to have different abilities. This is where the concept of Chvmpion Mind comes from, to facilitate a structure where you voluntarily commit to small but regular, daily, weekly or monthly actions so that you train towards an open mindset that allows you to acquire new habits that will help you to grow.


The brain weighs approximately 2% of our body mass and uses ten times more energy than it weighs, or 20% of our total body energy. Therefore one of its vital functions is to “manage energy well” and hence when we have to do things that involve an effort = use of more energy, the brain will not be our best ally, on the contrary, if you can be sitting on a sofa saving energy, better, and if we give sugar chute to deceive him that it is good energy, he happy. Therefore, changing habits, doing new things, leaving our comfort zone is an effort by which we fight against the natural biology of our brain.


When we talk about Happiness or Well-being, it’s all in our minds. A person with few resources can be happy just as a person with many resources can be unhappy. Therefore, the key to regular well-being is in how we operate mentally, growth mentality or fixed mentality. This, therefore, leads to a state of long-term happiness.


In a very short and simple way, and from what you can find many studies, good stress creates adrenaline. Stress sought, or not, but managed, controlled gives us adrenaline and gives us momentum. Bad stress, unmanaged bone and excessive in quantity or time makes the cortisol hormone burn our neurons and can cause us diseases.


On the other hand, happiness depends as much on the people around us as it does on ourselves. If one is very well but has his loved one very badly emotionally or unhealthy, he could never enjoy his own well-being 100%. However, if your loved ones and close ones are doing very well, they generate extra positive energy for us, it helps us to be well. Hence, when we help others, even if we are not 100% well ourselves, this kind of gesture make us feel better. And since happiness, like unhappiness, is not limited, helping others helps us to enhance the feeling of well-being, we start from the level we start.


Next, I am going to offer nine recommendations related to the behavior and mentality that I have developed from my learning and experiences in the areas of Talent development and leadership skills, along with applied Neuroscience, all of which I have combined with the latest technologies, such as Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence and big data in the Chvmpion Mind Method, but you don’t need to follow these tips now.


The following recommendations can be applied directly, but if you are looking for an environment that offers the structure that reinforces your desire and actions towards change, that is where Chvmpion Mind can help you enormously.



  1. Keep your eyes on the long-term goal


The key strategy is to be 100 percent sure about thewhat for” we want to make certain changes in our lives. For example: “I’m learning to be a public speaker to help me be a better communicator at work. If we outline a roadmap and include incremental goals, it will be clear that small challenges are only a stepping stone to the big goal.


Putting it into practice: One way to begin implementing this strategy is to add the words “what for” at the end of your mission statements. This will clarify which objectives are relevant and specific and which need to be reviewed.


NOTE: In Chvmpion Mind we use the SMARTEEL and FU-PRE models to define objectives and mark the way to them in intermediate steps that help you walk and achieve them. There are several models that you can find on the Internet to define goals, one of the most popular is the SMART model. There are not so many to define the purposes behind the objectives you set, but there is one that you may find on the Internet known as the “5 whys”, although I would replace it with the “7 for what“.



  1. Breathing through discomfort


When we venture into the unknown, perceived as dangerous or that we believe we cannot handle, our body releases cortisol and we feel emotional discomfort. The key is to recognize the discomfort, to ask ourselves if we are really in danger or if this is simply the amygdala’s exaggerated reaction. If so, allow it instead of resisting it.


Putting it into practice: Going for a walk or taking several deep breaths oxygenates the brain and makes the emotion fade.


NOTE: with Chvmpion Mind we help you to do physical exercise and meditate regularly, a practice that will help you deal with the zone of discomfort.


  1. Reframe your language about failure

Sometimes failure simply means looking for a different solution. Silicon Valley’s motto “Move fast and break things” reflects a culture of interruption, rapid iteration, and growth. If something goes wrong, to put the positives of that experience into words. To reframe is to put in positive something that seems negative.

Putting Language’s Reframing into Practice: Describing his multiple attempts to create the bulb, Thomas Edison said, “I haven’t failed. I just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.


  1. Make yourself uncomfortable – on purpose

Psychologists say that if we do things that deliberately bother us, such as calling a potential client or seeking feedback, we gain confidence in our ability to overcome challenges. When Steve Jobs was 12, he cold-called Bill Hewlett of Hewlett-Packard, asking for spare parts for the project he was working on. As a result, not only did he receive spare parts, but he also won a scholarship at HP.

Putting it into Practice: What can you do today to build on the discomfort and add to your growth mindset toolbox?

NOTE: Entering the Chvmpion Mind process is taking a step toward that uncomfortable zone that will make you grow.


  1. Seek feedback

Dominic Barton, former CEO of McKinsey & Company, forged a culture that not only welcomes comments but also demands them. Barton says he was able to get valuable information about his leadership style from employees who had only been with the company for a short period of time.

Put into Practice: Make a list of five people you’d like to hear from, either professionally or personally. Patterns will most likely emerge from that feedback, which will give you an idea of your main strengths and areas for improvement. If you can, combine people who know you very well and people who are not so close to you, but they have the opportunity to observe you regularly.

NOTE: At Chvmpion Mind we cover this area with 5 observers that you select and accompany and support you for 21 weeks.


  1. Set deadlines and inform people about your goals.

As soon as we tell someone that we are committed to doing something, we are more likely to go ahead with this project to avoid embarrassment. Studies show that when people know they are being observed, the mental pressure they are under is greater than, for example, winning or failing to win a good bonus at the end of the year. Especially if we have a moderately healthy economy that covers our basic needs. This is the #1 reason why our good wishes for the new year resolution fail because we don’t share them with anyone, just in case we don’t end up doing what we think we want to do.

Put into Practice: One way to be accountable is to join an expert or peer group.

NOTE: And yes, at Chvmpion Mind you will have this group of people who will “encourage” you to achieve your goals.


  1. Integrating change, celebrating success

When we deliberately create a change in our life, we create a new reality. It is important to take the time to let it settle. Eventually, our brain will reward us with a sense of accomplishment and a surge of dopamine.

Put into Practice: Celebrating our triumphs with friends creates positive reinforcement.

NOTE: I recommend the book “The Power of habits”.


  1. Practice the emotion of thanksgiving

There are things that neuroscientists and psychologists still understand, but they know it is real, even if they lack explanation. Being thankful, or rather, feeling grateful gives us energy. It’s not about cognitively thanking but about feeling that gratitude, to other people, or to yourself for what I can do, for what I am, for what I have and don’t have, for what I receive from others and don’t receive.

Put into Practice: find a space every day to feel grateful. To express it, even internally and recognize how parts of your body vibrate with that feeling. It can be from things as simple as, today I saw new dawn, grateful for being able to walk, for being able to share special moments with special people, for making things difficult for me and helping me grow, for having water without having to wait for rain …


  1. Seek how to make others happy

We explained at the beginning of this article that the happiness of our environment influences us in our own happiness. And also, our own happiness influences the happiness of our environment, so we must do everything possible to take care of ourselves, to be able to be well. And if we are not 100% well, one way to feel better is to help others to be well. Therefore, being able to help others is one of the most relevant wellness factors found in the last 25 years. Socializing is part of it, but socializing by helping is what really generates well-being, and sometimes it is enough to listen to someone, without doing anything else, to generate well-being for others.

Putting it into Practice: Make sure that your actions or omissions are also done to benefit others. Find out how to generate small gestures, one daily, for the next 21 days, from spending time with someone who appreciates and misses you, to offer to do something for someone who is very easy for you, but time is the excuse for not doing it for somebody else. Even be aware of how you can do the same things you are already doing, but together with others who will feel supported by you.



The application of these nine strategies will almost certainly cause growth problems. But if we stick to it, we can master our mind, minimize self-imposed limitations, and have a better chance of succeeding in business and life in general.

And the typical ones not mentioned here, but no less important, and that you already know, to sleep well and enough, to do regular physical exercise, to meditate every day, even if it is just 5-10 minutes, and to eat healthily almost always 😉, are ways to generate energy that your brain will be grateful for so that it does not monopolize all the energy that you need to create new habits and open mentality.


Jose L. Menéndez

Founder CEO of OlaCoach Corporate S.L.


Master PNL by ITS – UK

Master C. Coach by ICF – USA

Master Ex. Positive Leadership and Strategy by IE – Spain


Jose L. Menéndez is known as an expert in Coaching and Applied Neuroscience in the development of Talent and Leadership. He has the ability to “translate” neuroscientific studies and knowledge into a simple and pragmatic way for leaders and executives to realize their professional and personal potential using brain optimization methods to achieve results.

Pioneer of Spanish Coaching since 1996, he directs OlaCoach Corporate S.L., a boutique consultancy specialized in the design of programs for the development of Talent and Leadership, through applied Neuroscience and Integral Coaching, combining it with the CHVMPION MIND™ methodology. Founder CEO of CHVMPION MIND Technology S.L.

Among his clients are Microsoft, Intel, Coca Cola, PwC, Telefónica, ABB, Inditex, RE/MAX, BBVA, Siemens, Newmont, and many more, in addition to almost a hundred small and middle-size companies.

In his spare time, he likes to walk and talk with his wife while they enjoy a good tico or Colombian coffee, if possible.

To find out how Jose L. can help your organization maximize its true potential, write to


Sueños e intenciones no son suficientes

Peter M. Gollwitzer, de la Universidad de Konstanz nos contaba en un artículo publicado hace unos años en el American Psychologist que la Intención supone tan solo el 20-30% de lo que se requiere para alcanzar metas.


¿Cuántas veces has querido hacer algo o dejar de hacerlo? Y ahí se ha quedado, en buenas intenciones.


Si tomamos una parte del famoso método del juego interior del Tenis de Timothy Galway, popular en el mundo del coaching, donde se suele preguntar: del 0 al 10, que intención tienes en hacer X acción? (Siendo 0 = ninguna intención, y siendo 10 = definitivamente sí lo haré)


Resulta que lo que nos dice Peter M. Gollwitzer es que ni siquiera el 10 es suficiente para hacerlo. Es más, podrimos hacer la siguiente equiparación: una intención de 8 sería = 20% de intención, 9 = 25% de intención, y 10 = 30% de intención.


Según muchos psicólogos, con esta misma pregunta, cuando uno responde 7 o menos, significa que no hay casi nada de intención, o que depende más de terceras personas o otros factores para que algo se llegue a realizar.


Así que, ahora que los coaches pensaban que todos sus clientes iban a responder de seguro a la acción, simplemente por responder a la pregunta de arriba que su intención era un 10, quizás puedan darse cuenta que ese diez necesita de otros elementos para que se cumpla.


Para lograr avanzar necesitas persistir en lo que quieres hacer, repetirlo las suficientes veces. En otras palabras crear un nuevo hábito o varios que te lleve hacia tus objetivos. Esto significa que sin acción no hay logros. Ya sé que esto es una perogrullada, tan evidente que no hacía falta ni mencionarlo, y sin embargo, ¿Por qué muchas personas siguen realizando promesas llenas de buenas intenciones y no llegan ni a dar un paso hacia dichas promesas?


El error está en que se enfocan en el logro, en el objetivo. Soñar es muy positivo, de hecho ver el futuro prometedor, alcanzando los objetivos suele ser muy motivante, y esto puede originar adrenalina que nos invite a movernos. Sin embargo, muchas veces este estado de ánimo que logramos con los sueños, no ofrece los resultados esperados, pues como toda química que se crea en el cuerpo, ya sea por acciones, pensamientos o medicamentos, sus efectos no son eternos, y por lo tanto, algunos sueñan desde el sillón, y para cuando deciden levantarse se les ha quitado el efecto del sueño, y no hacen lo que pensaron que deberían hacer para lograr su sueño.


La clave está en enfocarnos en el beneficio de cada pasito y acción que damos, y no en el logro final.


Si realizas una pequeña acción y reconoces el beneficio de esa acción, el centro de gratificación del cerebro, no solamente sentirá la química que le llega por dicho pasito, sino que comenzará a asociar dicha recompensa con acciones, y las acciones repetidas, se convierten en hábitos, y los hábitos que nos generan endorfinas hacia el sistema de recompensa, nos anima a seguir, a hacer más y más…hasta que voilá, alcanzas tu meta!


En coaching solemos decir, cuando un objetivo del cliente es grande (y esto es una percepción muy personal del cliente) que entonces es mejor que empiecen a comerse el elefante poquito a poco. Si a esto le añades, que en cada mordisquito, cada paso que da, logras que el cliente reconozca los beneficios de ese pasito, en lugar de mirar constantemente al objetivo final, estarás logrando que se motive a medida que ve los pasos dados y sus beneficios logrados en cada momento, que muchas veces suelen ser mejores incluso que el objetivo marcado.


La meta se registra en la parte racional de la menta, y uno suele hablarse sobre ella: Lo logré, o no lo logré. Me está costando mucho. Me falta mucho para llegar a ella, etc.


En cambio, si uno mira a los beneficios de cada pasito dado, estos irán al cerebro límbico, además del al prefrontal, creando emociones positivas asociadas a hechos y acciones que le animarán a seguir avanzando. Y con ello, la intención habrá pasado a la acción, la acción se convertirá en hábito, y el hábito te acercará, te hará llegar a tu objetivo.


Una manera muy efectiva en que podemos incentivar las primeras acciones, para seguir y superar obstáculos es preguntándonos: ¿Qué estoy aprendiendo? ¿Cómo puedo crecer con este aprendizaje?  Centrarse en el aprendizaje diario/semanal a corto plazo. Pues además en el aprendizaje hay también placer (centro de gratificación), y esto nos ayuda a darnos cuenta de las cosas que podemos mantener o podemos ir corrigiendo, y de esta manera es más fácil aceptar que un paso no nos salió bien, y cambiarlo, hacer algo diferente. De esta manera no piensas en el objetivo y en lo distante que aún está, sino en las cosas que vas logrando en el camino.


Identificar y evitar las distracciones del día a día es importante. Muchas personas piensan en los obstáculos, como algo grande que les impedirán avanzar, y sin embargo, las pequeñas distracciones del día a día, suelen ser sin darse uno cuenta sus grandes obstáculos. De ahí, que cuando uno identifica estos y se pregunta: ¿Cómo puedo ser o hacer para evitar estas distracciones, para superarlas? Y así evitar que se interpongan en el camino. Otro beneficio! Y nos anima a seguir dando pasos, incluso nos sentimos más preparados para desafíos mayores, (que a veces siguen estando en la cabeza, y al andar desaparecen)


Identificar las distracciones diarias, semanales y abordarlas, ayudan también a superarlas y a desarrollar nuestra resiliencia. Con lo que una vez más, y como dijo una vez un sabio: “yo me ocupo del minuto a minuto de mi día, que de las semanas, los meses y los años se ocupa el destino”


Otro punto importante, es diseñar estrategias para avanzar, pero siendo flexible con uno mismo. Una Meta sin estrategia es difícil que se cumpla, pero una estrategia rígida puede bloquear el avance.


Las estrategias son como los mapas de papel, que nos indica cual pueden ser el camino a seguir, pero si al llegar a una calle, está bloqueada, por obras, accidentes, etc… volveremos a mirar el mapa, para ver qué alternativas tomar. En otras palabras, si creo una estrategia y esta no funciona, puedo pensar en diseñar otra hasta que encuentre la que mejor me funciona. Si mi foco de atención está en buscar la mejor estrategia, estaré incentivando la búsqueda de alternativas a través de la acción. En lugar de pensar con rigidez que solo puedo hacerlo de una manera, que si no me salió bien, parece que mi meta se desvanece.  Y si la estrategia te funciona, sigue aplicándola!


Muchas veces, los coaches preguntamos a nuestro cliente ¿Qué piensas en estos momentos? ¿Qué tipo de pensamientos tienes en X o Y situaciones? Buscando que identifiquen su dialogo interno. Identificar el dialogo interno para que no saboteen su intención. Pues el ser humano tiende a justificar todo lo que hace o deja de hacer, y si nuestro dialogo interno nos machaca y nos alimenta para quedarnos en la zona de confort, no tomar acciones hacia lo que queremos es algo que se puede evitar si observamos a nuestro dialogo interno.


Para esto, meditar todos los días, aunque sea 5 o 10 minutos, dos o tres veces al día, nos puede ayudar muchísimo para evitar que el dialogo interno sea nuestro mayor enemigo.


Y para terminar, decir que la implementación de un método o una estrategia, es crucial. Es pasar la intención a la acción. En otras palabras, la ACCIÓN de lo que planeas es esencial. Si no implementas lo que planeas, no puedes ver nada de lo anterior, no puedes sentir el beneficio de los pasos, la gratificación del impacto que vas logrando, o hacer cambios en la estrategia si diera lugar, etc… la implementación es clave en el coaching en la consecución de logros y una de las cosas que más diferencia marca para que se logren los objetivos….

Jose L. Menéndez

Fundador y CEO de OlaCoach Corporate S.L.

Master Certified Coach por la ICF 

Máster en Liderazgo Positivo y Estrategia 

Fundador y CEO de CHAMPION MIND  ® Tecnología

Jose L. Menéndez es conocido como experto en Coaching y Neurociencia aplicada en el desarrollo de Talento y Liderazgo. Tiene la habilidad de “traducir” estudios y conocimiento Neurocientíficos a una manera simple y pragmática para que líderes y ejecutivos se den cuenta de su potencial profesional y personal utilizando métodos basados ​​en la optimización del cerebro para lograr resultados.
Pionero del Coaching y de la Neurociencia aplicada, dirige OlaCoach Corporate S.L., una boutique de consultoría especializada en la creación de programas y diseños para el desarrollo de comportamientos ligado a competencias empresariales, a través de la Neurociencia, herramientas del Coaching Integral y metodología CHAMPION MIND ®

Entre sus clientes se encuentran grandes multinacionales como Microsoft, Intel, Coca Cola, PwC, Telefónica, Inditex, REXMAS, BBVA, Siemens, Newmont, y muchas más, además de casi un centenar de PYMES.

Certificado en el uso de las Herramientas Neuro Quotient ®, diagnostico de comportamientos basado en la Neurociencia, ideal para el desarrollo de Talento y Liderazgo, y en Team Diagnostic Assesment ™ herramienta ideal para detectar los elementos de productividad y desarrollar Equipos de Alto Rendimiento bajo este modelo de Coaching Sistémico.

En su tiempo libre le gusta pasear y hablar con su mujer mientras disfrutan de una buena tapa, a ser posible de jamón ibérico junto a un buen vino, y un carajillo para terminar una buena comida.

Para saber cómo Jose L. puede ayudar a su organización a maximizar su verdadero potencial, le puede escribir a


Coaching puts the methodology in place, but it is only a part of why it works. Chvmpion Mind puts the structure, which is what we all need to be supported and achievers.

Peter M. Gollwitzer, from the University of Konstanz, told us in an article published a few years ago in the American Psychologist that Intention is only 20-30% of what is required to reach goals.

How many times have you wanted to do something or stop doing it? And that’s where it’s stayed, in good intentions.

If we take a part of the famous method of the inner game of Timothy Galway’s Tennis, popular in the world of coaching, where you usually ask: from 0 to 10, what intention do you have in doing X action? (Being 0 = no intention, and being 10 = I will definitely)

Turns out what Peter M. Gollwitzer tells us is that not even a ten is enough to do it. Moreover, we could make the following equation: an intention of 8 would be = 20% intention, 9 = 25% intention, and 10 = 30% intention.

According to many psychologists, with this same question, when you answer 7 or less, it means that there is almost nothing of intention, or that you depend more on third parties or other factors for something to happen.

So, now that coaches thought that all their clients were going to respond safely to the action, simply by answering the question above that their intention was a 10, perhaps they can realize that that ten needs other elements in order for it to be fulfilled.

To make progress you need to persist in what you want to do, repeat it enough times. In other words, create a new habit or several that will lead you to your goals.

And this means that without action there are no achievements. I know this is a truism, so obvious that it didn’t even have to be mentioned, and yet why do so many people keep making promises full of good intentions and don’t even get to take a step toward those promises?

The mistake is that they focus on achievement, on the goal.

For instance, to dream is very positive, in fact, to see the promising future, reaching the objectives usually is very motivating, and this can originate adrenaline that invites us to move.

However, many times this state of mind that we achieve with dreams does not offer the expected results, because like all chemistry that is created in the body, whether by actions, thoughts or medications, its effects are not eternal.

Therefore, some dream from the couch, and when they decide to get up the effect of sleep has been removed and does not do what they thought they should do to achieve their dream.

The key is to focus on the benefit of every little step and action we take, not on the final achievement.

If you perform a small action and recognize the benefit of that action, the brain’s gratification center will not only feel the chemistry that comes through that little step but will begin to associate that reward with actions, and repeated actions, become habits, and habits that generate endorphins towards the reward system, encourage us to continue, to do more and more … until voila, you reach your goal!

In coaching we usually say, when a client’s objective is big (and this is a very personal perception of the client) then it is better to start eating the elephant little by little. If you add to this, that in each bite, each step it takes, you get the adrenaline hormone in the brain.

The client will recognize the benefits of that step, instead of constantly looking at the final goal, you will be getting motivated as you see the steps are taken and their benefits achieved at every moment, which often is better than the goal set, and with the adrenaline shooting up in your brain, you will be able to create neuro-pathways that will help you to keep going.

The goal is recorded in the rational part of the mint, and one usually talks about it: I made it, or I didn’t make it. It’s costing me a lot. I have a long way to go before I get to it, etc.

On the other hand, if you look at the benefits of each step taken, they will go to the limbic brain, as well as the prefrontal brain, creating positive emotions associated with events and actions that will encourage you to keep moving forward.

And with it, the intention will have passed to the action, the action will become a habit, and the habit will bring you closer, will make you reach your goal.

A very effective way in which we can encourage the first actions, to continue and overcome obstacles is by asking ourselves: What am I learning? How can I grow with this learning?

Focus on daily/weekly learning in the short term. In addition to learning there is also pleasure (gratification center), and this helps us to realize the things we can maintain or we can go correcting, and this way it is easier to accept that a step did not go well, and change it, do something different.

In this way you don’t think about the objective and how distant it still is, but about the things you are achieving along the way.

Identifying daily, weekly distractions and addressing them also helps to overcome them and develop our resilience. So once again, and as a wise man once said: “I take care of the minute by minute of my day, that of weeks, months and years destiny takes care of”.

Another important point is to design strategies to move forward but be flexible with yourself. A goal without a strategy is difficult to achieve, but a rigid strategy can block progress.

Strategies are like paper maps, which tell us which way to go, but if when we reach a street, it is blocked, because of works, accidents, etc… we will look at the map again, to see what alternatives to take. In other words, if I create a strategy and it doesn’t work, I can think about designing another one until I find the one that works best for me.

If my focus is on finding the best strategy, I will be encouraging the search for alternatives through action.

Instead of thinking rigidly that I can only do it in one way, that if it didn’t work out for me, my goal seems to fade away.  And if the strategy works for you, keep applying it!

Coaches often ask our clients what do you think at the moment? What kind of thoughts do you have in X or Y situations? Seeking to identify their internal dialogue.

Identify the internal dialogue so they don’t sabotage their intention. Human beings tend to justify everything they do or fail to do, and if our internal dialogue crushes us and feeds us to stay in the comfort zone, not taking action towards what we want is something that can be avoided if we observe our internal dialogue.

To have a champion mind requires champion thoughts and champion small steps. Sometimes we think that is very brave to take a big step, but the bravery is on taking continue small steps.

It is easier to win a gold medal, that to be finalist 3 times. The first one requires a bit of talent and a bit of big luck. The second one requires a lot of talent and a lot of work, and maybe, just maybe, a bit of luck, which is not in our control. But the rest, it is.

For this, meditating every day, even if it is 5 or 10 minutes, two or three times a day, can help us a lot to avoid that the internal dialogue is our biggest enemy.

And finally, to say that the implementation of a method or a strategy is crucial. It is to move from intention to action. In other words, ACTION of what you plan is essential. If you don’t implement what you plan, you can’t see anything of the above, you can’t feel the benefit of the steps, the gratification of the impact that you are achieving, or make changes in the strategy if it gave place, etc…

The implementation is key in coaching in the attainment of achievements and one of the things that makes the most difference so that the objectives are achieved…


Jose L. Menéndez

Founder and CEO of OlaCoach Corporate S.L.

Master Certified Coach by the ICF and

Master in Positive Leadership & Strategy

Founder and CEO of the CHVMPION MIND™ Technology


Jose L. Menéndez is known as an expert in Coaching and Applied Neuroscience in the development of Talent and Leadership. He has the ability to “translate” neuroscientific studies and knowledge into a simple and pragmatic way for leaders and executives to realize their professional and personal potential using brain optimization methods to achieve results.

Pioneer of Coaching and Applied Neuroscience, he directs OlaCoach Corporate S.L., a boutique of consultancy specialized in the creation of programs and designs for the development of behaviors linked to entrepreneurial competencies, through Neuroscience, tools of Integral Coaching and methodology CHVMPION MIND ™.

His clients include large multinationals such as Microsoft, Intel, Coca Cola, PwC, Telefónica, Inditex, REMAX, BBVA, Siemens, Newmont, ABB and many more, in addition to smalls and medium companies.

Certified in the use of Neuro Quotient ® Tools, behavior diagnosis based on Neuroscience, ideal for the development of Talent and Leadership, and Team Diagnostic Assessment ™ ideal tool to detect productivity elements and develop High-Performance Teams under this model of Systemic Coaching.

In his free time, he likes to walk and talk with his wife while they enjoy a good tapa, preferably Iberian ham with a good wine, and a carajillo to finish a good meal.

To find out how Jose L. can help your organization maximize its true potential, you can write to

¿Sabe cómo crear una estrategia de cultura de cambio y crecimiento permanente?

Sabía que, según el informe de Gallup 2013, se recomienda tener en cuenta 3 claves para una buena estrategia de cultura de cambio, ensalzar y acelerar el compromiso de la organización,

  1. Seleccionar a la gente correcta
  2. desarrollar sus fortalezas y
  3. mejorar su bienestar general. 

¿Desea crear una cultura de cambio en su organización? Deje de poner parches a corto plazo. Ya sé que ya sabía esto, como lo saben la mayoría de las organizaciones, y aun así, la mayoría de las organizaciones siguen haciendo lo que la mayoría, cursos de poquitas horas esperando que cambien la cultura. No crean una estrategia a largo plazo, (quizás no saben, ni se molestan en averiguar cómo lograrlo). Solo les duele cuando piensan en ello, o ven que los números van hacia abajo.

No sé quién es más cínico, si RR.HH. que no desean liarse la manta a la cabeza o la dirección de la empresa que nos les permiten ni que inviertan en una buena manta (la estrategia). Perdón, no quise molestar a nadie, es que en casi 20 años involucrado en estos temas, me lo sigo encontrando en la mayoría de las organizaciones con mil y una excusa para no hacer las cosas bien. Pero si con tengo 2.000 euros para motivar a mis empleados, o para lograr que cambien de actitud ¿me puedes traer tu barita mágica?

Más del ochenta por ciento de los líderes informan que tener una cultura de empleados motivados es el factor principal para una empresa exitosa. ¿Pero qué se necesita para crear una cultura de empleados motivados y de alto rendimiento?

“Durante la última década, la mayoría de las organizaciones descubrieron las limitaciones de tratar de motivar a las personas desde el exterior”, dijo el profesor Richard Ryan, uno de los principales investigadores y autores del mundo sobre motivación, quien también añade: “hoy la pregunta que veo que enfrentan la mayoría de las organizaciones es cómo proporcionar condiciones en el lugar de trabajo que amplifiquen la emoción y el interés inherentes a las personas que desean hacer un buen trabajo”.

Por supuesto, la gente quiere recibir un pago justo por el trabajo que realizan, pero Rich y sus colegas han descubierto que el dinero puede ser contraproducente cuando se trata de motivar el comportamiento de las personas si sienten que es la única forma en que reconocen sus habilidades y energías, o los está ofreciendo como una forma de controlar su esfuerzo de trabajo. Rich advirtió que, si su lugar de trabajo solo se enfoca en factores de motivación externos, las posibilidades son que con el tiempo su gente se sienta cada vez menos inspirada para participar.

En cambio, este experto sugiere que si desea que su gente realmente participe de lo que está tratando de lograr, debe sentirse como parte de lo que está sucediendo en la organización y contribuyendo a estos objetivos.  De hecho, la investigación ha encontrado organizaciones exitosas en todo el mundo con culturas “mágicas” donde los empleados están muy comprometidos y ven su lugar de trabajo como un excelente lugar para trabajar, entiendo que los mejores motivadores vienen de adentro. Ves que cualquier carrera puede proporcionar mucha más satisfacción de lo que da un sueldo. También ofrece oportunidades para usar y desarrollar competencias y talentos, obtener una sensación de satisfacción y satisfacción personal, conectarse y pertenecer a otros, y los medios para hacer una contribución a un bien mayor.

Mi amigo Ale, danés, ingeniero y con un puesto global en su organización me comentaba el otro día, que en su organización se enfocan más en designar proyectos por “propósito” en lugar de por competencias, y que la gente una vez conoce el propósito de sus roles, adquieren la responsabilidad y motivación suficiente para llevarlo a cabo exitosamente. (pero este ejemplo hablaré más en otro momento)

¿Cómo se aumentan los niveles intrínsecos de motivación de las personas?

Rich y sus colegas han descubierto que todos tenemos tres necesidades psicológicas inherentes, teoría de la autodeterminación: sentirse auténticos al elegir hacer cosas que se alineen con los valores y los intereses; ser competente a través del aprendizaje y el dominio de nuevas habilidades; y pertenecer Cuando sientes que perteneces, sientes que eres valorado e importante para tu organización, y te estás conectando con otros en tu equipo o en toda la organización.

“La mayoría de los trabajadores modernos quieren sentirse efectivos en sus trabajos, sentir una sensación de dominio e inversión en la empresa”, explicó Rich. “La administración trata de destapar la tremenda energía que tienen los empleados y ayudarlos a aprovecharla”.

Por ejemplo, los estudios han encontrado que cuando nuestras necesidades de autonomía, competencia y relación se encuentran en el trabajo, pueden mejorar el compromiso de las personas con el trabajo, mejorar el desempeño laboral y promover un mayor bienestar psicológico y menor malestar en el trabajo.

Entonces, ¿cómo se logra destapar la motivación de la gente, su equipo?

Rich y sus colegas sugieren tres formas en que puede aumentar los niveles de motivación y el compromiso de su equipo para fomentar una cultura mágica:

  • Fomente la autenticidad: considere cómo puede ayudar a los miembros de su equipo a diseñar sus tareas para que realmente puedan poner sus energías en sus tareas. Discuta los objetivos y la misión de su equipo, de una manera que le dé un sentido de propiedad y proporcione un fundamento para lo que está haciendo. Haga preguntas abiertas que estimulen la discusión sobre el propósito de la actividad, los problemas percibidos y las posibles soluciones. Luego usa la escucha activa para entenderlo desde su perspectiva. ¿Qué significa la tarea o sus demandas para ellos? ¿Cómo pueden trabajar juntos para encontrar formas de eliminar obstáculos? Piense en esto como un ejercicio para realmente tratar de escuchar las necesidades y esperanzas de sus empleados.
  • Fomente la competencia: ayude a su personal a adquirir dominio y confianza en sus trabajos al proporcionar retroalimentación sincera y positiva que reconozca sus contribucionesBrinde ejemplos específicos y, siempre que sea posible, reconozca las iniciativas o el impacto único que tienen en la organización. Y al trabajar con ellos para diseñar soluciones para reveses o desafíos, puede ayudarles a realizar tareas, sentirse seguros y desarrollar aún más su competencia.
  • Crear pertenencia: no supongas que cuando unes personas juntas se conectarán automáticamente. La verdadera conexión se produce cuando brinda oportunidades para que los miembros de su equipo se ayuden mutuamente, para que sientan una interconexión e interdependencia entre ellos. Encuentre maneras de fomentar el intercambio de habilidades, conocimiento y apoyo práctico entre los miembros del equipo.

Y claro, esto no se hace con unas horas de formación, sino más bien diseñando una estrategia de desarrollo de estos 3 pilares que, como todo lo que se hace bien y perdura, suele llevar tiempo hasta que cala en toda la organización.

Por Jose L. Menéndez Cuenca, empresario, Master Certified Coach, Master en PNL, experto en diseño e implementación de estrategias de Liderazgo Integral Positivo y estudiante en el Executive Master of Positive Leadership and Strategic del IE Business School. –