Because three is manageable. Because three is doable. And because we all want to be able to live lighter, here are just three things I started doing to create that change I wanted to see in my own life. (And yes, it’s going pretty OK!)
1. Managing my Thoughts
Our thoughts are indeed our powerhouse; they are so powerful that they control our feelings, actions, habits, and behaviors, so if you want to produce a different set of results in your life, a great starting point is to learn to manage your thoughts more. It’s impossible to control every single thought that you do have (and it would be incredibly time-consuming!!) but your aim is to become more aware of certain thinking errors you could be prone to, such as unrealistic expectations or double standards, because it’s only when you become aware of your thinking patterns that you can actually do something to change them.
2. Aiming for Excellence
If you’re aiming for perfection the chances are that you will never be happy with the results you get, and you’ll end up continuously frustrated with yourself and others,as they usually won’t live up to your unrealistic expectations either. Whereas when you aim for excellence, you immediately allow yourself room for personal and professional growth. And how do you know when you’re on the right path? You ask yourself, Am I really doing my best here? or Did I do my best to be __________Today? Because when you can honestly say yes to these types of questions, you know you’re heading in the right direction, not down that lonely, guilt-ridden and frustration-filled journey to “perfection”!
3. Asking Better Questions
I quickly realized when I started my coach training, how useless Why questions can be in so many different situations. Think about it for a second and reflect on how the following questions make you feel:
Why are you late?
Why has the deadline not been met?
Why did the project fail?
Now compare those questions to the following and notice the difference:
What do you need to do to make the start of the morning briefing?
How can we make sure deadlines are met?
What actions do we need to take to ensure the project succeeds?
The Why questions seek justifications and often encourage us to find reasons or create scapegoats; they can be problem focused. Whereas the How and What questions recognize that yes, there is an issue, AND more importantly, focus on taking action and creating solutions.