Machen MacDonald

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September 24, 2012
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Get clear with TLC

We are friends, right? Well, as a friend, there’s something I need to let you in on. Everyone’s been talking and, well, I just don’t think you should be the ONLY one who doesn’t know.

Most people consider themselves positive and focused when they’re asked. I won’t bore you with the statistics on this one because if you read the book, “How to Lie with Statistics,” you can ask people in a certain way to answer in support of your desired research. So, check this out for yourself.

Do you fall into the trap most people do? They are focused on what they don’t want or are trying to avoid and are positive they are uncertain on how to avoid it.

When it all boils down, people really only have two problems. One, they may know what they want but don’t know how to get it, or two, they simply don’t truly know what they want.

Here is some simple yet eye opening research to which you may be able to relate. In our business planning workshops and in our one-on-one coaching and consulting sessions, when we ask the question, “What do you want more of in your life or in your business?,” eight out of every 10 people respond with what they want less of or don’t want.

Ask yourself the question above. Is the answer what you want to be moving toward? Your initial response is most likely what you are trying to avoid. Popular responses sound like, I am tired of hassles with my employees. I need to reduce my expenses or debt. I’m working too hard or too much. I want less fatigue, aches or pains. I wish my customers weren’t so demanding. I’m overwhelmed. I’m unfocused and get distracted too easily.

These are not answers to what is wanted as much as they are statements of what they don’t want.

Flip the coin of focus. Once you become aware you have been focused on what you are actually trying to limit or eliminate, notice what is on the other side of that coin. It usually has to do with increasing your capacity in some way. Becoming more resilient, creative, certain, confident, prosperous, effective or productive are just several of many desired outcomes.

In her book “The Passion Test,” Janet Atwood states, “When you are clear, what you want will show up and only to the extent you are clear.”

So, how do you get clear? Try a little TLC.

T - Take yourself to the place of having invested the side of the coin you desire. Let’s say you want to experience a more productive relationship with your employees. What particular capacity do you need to more fully develop in yourself? Step into the story of success. Imagine the desired interaction you really desire to have.

L- Look back from there. Notice did you have to become a better listener? A more effective trainer? A stronger example of what you expect of others? Did you have to hire a manager who was perhaps better at training than you?

C- Create a plan from there. Think strategically of a plan that will actually help you develop your capacity around becoming more of who you desire to be.

You will find once you become clear of what you want to move toward rather than avoid, it’s like doing a 180 degree turn. You see things entirely differently. You have a new perspective and become aware of resources available to help you achieve your preferred outcome.

Remember, there is never a shortage of resources, only a shortage of resourcefulness. By focusing on what you want, you become more resourceful —thereby bringing into existence that which you desire.

Make it up. Make it fun. Make it happen.

Machen P. MacDonad, CPCC, CCSC is a certified life and business coach with ProBrilliance Leadership Institute in Grass Valley. He can be reached at coach@probrilliance.com and (530) 273-8000.


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The Union Updated Mar 29, 2013 09:15PM Published Oct 8, 2012 04:18PM Copyright 2012 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.