We live in a world of schedules, often jumping from one thing to another, multi-tasking along the way. This can lead to performing tasks poorly because we are just trying to get through the long list of everything we have to do. There is a huge difference between doing something well and doing something just to get it over with because we feel we have to get to the next thing on the list. This happens in the business world as well as our personal lives. But the two worlds intermingle and sometimes our best examples are outside of business, and these remind us of concepts we may not be aware of, or may have forgotten.
This summer we watered our gardens every few days. We watered, really, because we didn't want the plants we put in to die. So, we went through the motions every few days to keep our investment from needing to be pulled out and thrown out. I can honestly say we did not water because of the love of the garden, although we both love gardening and the results it produces. Later in the summer, we were having a big event at our home and the plants were not doing too well. For the couple of weeks prior, I watered every day extensively with a bit of miracle grow in the water. It actually didn't take that much extra time, but the results were remarkable. When we watering every few days, we were trying to be efficient with our time, and were really just going through the motions and making it a "job" to complete as quickly as possible. Watering everyday with the bit of fertilizer with a defined purpose in mind of improving the look of the garden, took a bit more time, but was much more effective. Very quickly the plants took hold and exploded with growth and looked just beautiful. I had thought the reason the garden wasn't looking great was due to the plants. It wasn't the plants, it was my care of the plants.
A good reminder not to just go through the motions, but actually do things that are effective that lead to the desired end result. I look forward to next year's garden, with a renewed outlook to be more effective, and I am grateful for the everyday lessons we find in everything we do. When you are open to lessons, they spill over and benefit other areas of life as well.
As individuals are finishing up 2013 and making plans and setting goals for the new year, it is a time of reflection. Very often an individual comes to the realization they want to take a different direction in their work and decide to change jobs in the new year.
When a person is going through this type of scenario, as it is important to take time to stop and reflect. During this reflection time a great exercise to do is to make a list of all the things you don't want and the reasons you want a new direction, and, a list of all the things that are important to you in your next step. This is called clarity through contrast, and it is in engaging in this type of exercise that one can gain a lot of clarity. Spending the time to identify and put on paper what you don't want, is a reminder not to fall into the same scenario with a new job. Listing all the things that are important to you in a new direction allows you to identify what is really important this time around.
Once the exercise has been completed, you may not know exactly what it is you want to do, however, having the clear vision of what you don't want and what you do allows you to identify confidently when the new opportunity is a match.
We all have word tracks in our heads that determine every decision we make. Many times these word tracks are limiting and destructive to living the life we truly want to be living. Unless explored, most don't even realize these word tracks are deep within their mind and limit them in many ways. Once you identify the current word tracks you have in your mind, you can then determine if these deep rooted beliefs are helping you move ahead or are keeping you stuck. If you find yourself stuck, the next step is to determine the words that would support the direction you want to take your life.
An example of this would be: Be the example that others can follow.
With every decision you make, this is the measuring stick you would use. Ask yourself, am I being the example that others can follow in this situation. This would apply to both work and personal parts of our lives. Here is a very basic example - Take your dog for a walk. An old conditioned word track might have been, nobody picks up after their dog, so why should I? With your new word track "Be the example that others can follow", you would pick up after your dog, and while you are bending over anyway, pick up some garbage on the curb and disgard of all of it together when you get home. This is the type of small change in your words and actions that will affect every aspect of your life in a positive direction.
The word tracks you choose are personal to you and are meant to support the type of life you want to be living. Take the time to explore your current word tracks....you will realize and identify the many limitations you have bought into, and that is the first step to making changes that support the direction you want to go.
Debbie Ruston - Entrepreneur - International Trainer, Visionary Leader