Thoughts lead to feelings, feelings lead to actions, actions lead to results.

That's the universal mindset formula. All mindset gurus from Marie Forleo to Byron Katie have their own version of this. So do I, but I trace it back one more step:

Our situations and surroundings lead to throughs, thoughts lead to feelings, feelings lead to actions, . . . and so on and so forth.

The reason I'm so hellbent on including situations and surroundings is that even though we often find ourselves in situations and places we have zero control over--like the weather, traffic, pandemics, illness, global events--we have more power than we think.

And yes, even though all situations and surroundings are inherently neutral (meaning, we infuse them with meaning and preferences), that doesn't mean our preferences are insignificant.

How we think about our surroundings matter. What our surroundings make us think about matters. Use that knowledge for all it's worth. That's what an elderly home in the Netherlands did. When they surrounded dementia patients with furniture and props from their youth, the patience's memory improved, stress levels went down, and they slept better.

If you know plants make you happy, bring plants to work. If a certain teacup makes you more focused, drink from that teacup. If you have a super noisy neighbour that makes you batshit crazy, invest in sound blocking headphones. You can't change the neighbour, but you can change your response. You can prime your environment and gadgets in your favour.

But this isn't about all that outer stuff. This is about your thoughts and about you getting to know them. This is about you getting to know what works for you and what doesn't. This is about you leaving nothing to chance and paying attention.

A while back I wanted to prime my office for success. So I thought: what do successful people have in their office? Weirdly enough, my answer was: sparkling water! I bought a case of sparkling water. What else? They have white binders! So I bought white binders. What else? They don't have crap everywhere! So I decluttered and cleaned.

When you ask yourself that question, you will come up with totally different answers. And that's the point. The pointis to personalise it, optimise it, and claim it.

So maybe that's a fun challenge for this week: how can you prime your office for success? Take it away!