How do you want to be in 2009?
What ‘state' are you in right now? – What are you thinking right now? What are you feeling? Are your thoughts and your mood positive, negative or neutral? How might this affect your performance today? Whether you are working on your own in the office, going to a meeting or needing to make important telephone calls, your ‘state', your thoughts and feelings will have an impact on how effective and successful you are.
Check in with yourself as you progress through each day and ask yourself whether your thoughts and feelings are going to help or hinder you right now?‘Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.' Anais Nin
What mood, state or energy do you need to be in? – Different things require different states to successfully carry them out. You might need different energy levels to write a report, coach a team member, present to prospective clients or carry out a disciplinary meeting.
Think about the main tasks and activities that you need to carry out in your job to achieve your key objectives this year. What different states would be an ideal match for you to successfully carry them out?
‘Energy is the essence of life. Every day you decide how you're going to use it by knowing what you want and what it takes to reach that goal, and by maintaining focus.' Oprah Winfrey
What is in your circle of influence? – Yes, I know, I keep on coming back to Stephen Covey's Circle of Influence and Circle of Concern, but I think it is one of the keys to staying positive in 2009. When we focus on what we can directly influence: our thoughts, mood, our actions, decisions, our communication with others, we start to feel motivated, positive and able to influence things around us. When we focus on what is in our Circle of Concern, which we have no influence over, we feel like we are banging our head against a brick wall, we get demoralised and find it difficult to have the enthusiasm to do anything.
What is in your Circle of Influence that you are going to focus on in the coming months?
Do you believe you will be successful? – Why are your beliefs important?If you believe it will work out, you'll see opportunities. If you believe it won't, you'll see obstacles.' Dr Wayne W Dyer
Our beliefs can become self-fulfilling prophecies; they have a profound effect on how we pursue our dreams and goals, how we approach challenges and obstacles along the way and how persistent we are in the face of setbacks. We all know of people or have read inspiring stories about people who have, despite enormous challenges or against all odds, succeeded in fulfilling their dreams (see right hand column for an example of this). Was it their skills and knowledge that set them apart, was it the amount of effort they were prepared to put in or was it their determination, their attitude of mind that made them drive forward, no matter what?
Think about your beliefs with regard to the coming months. What do you believe about …
- Yourself – do you see yourself as resilient, positive, successful, determined or fearful, pessimistic, stuck in a rut, a failure!
- Your goal, desired outcomes – do you see them as realistic and achievable or impossible to achieve? Do they inspire you or leave you feeling overwhelmed? One of my client organisations has set three targets in terms of sales this year. The first is the ‘must achieve' (which happens to be lower than 2008 as they are being realistic), the next is what they would like to achieve, and then there is the WOW goal, which would be amazing if they achieved this.
- The world around you – do you see the world as a hopeless cause, do you see the current circumstances as just a blip that will be overcome or do you see the positive things that are happening around the world, how people are pulling together in difficult times?
- Other people around you – are you feeling positive about their ability to perform, to rise to the challenges, to support you in what you want to achieve? Or do you believe that they are not capable, not able to deal with the pressures they face?
What positive, empowering beliefs would it be good to hold to support you in your activities in the coming months?
‘Each of us makes his own weather, determines the colour of the skies in the emotional universe which he inhabits.' Fulton J Sheen
Take time out to develop yourself – find new and exciting ways of working
Coaching & Performance Management - Thursday 22nd January 2009
This is organised by Oxford Brookes University and open to anyone who wants to learn how to coach and develop their staff and effectively manage performance. Click here for more information or email Melanie on email@example.com
Master Your Inner Critic, Release Your Inner Wisdom - Saturday 21st February, Kidlington, Oxon
This programme is based on my book and includes a one day workshop, a copy of my book, and two follow up coaching emails to assist you in putting your learning into practice. Click here to email me for more details about the programme. 20% discount booking deadline for the Master Your Inner Critic workshop has been extended to 16th January.
To order a copy of my book Master Your Inner Critic, Release Your Inner Wisdom, click here to email me for an order form. £8.99 plus £1.00 UK P&P.