“Tolerations” Take a Toll

What do desktop clutter, inadequate tools for the job, a too-chatty co-worker and a troublesome relationship with the boss have in common?

They’re all tolerations, the little and big things we put up with—often without realizing it—that sap our energy and drain our life force. Every time we tolerate something, we deplete the energy we could be using to grow our business or make desired changes or to simply experience joy. It’s like living with a low-grade fever or pain that somehow dulls our experience and zaps our full vitality.

When am I going to get to all that paperwork? Zap!
Ughhh. I wish he would just be quiet. Zap!
My computer just froze again—the third time today. Zap!

At the root of our tolerations are a variety of limiting beliefs that immobilize us. For example: “I can’t take the time.” “That’s just the way it is.” “Don’t rock the boat—play it safe.” “Don’t complain or be too demanding.” “It’s not that important.” “I have no control.”

There are countless limiting beliefs, yet they all serve to dampen our life force and keep us playing small. And, boy, are they exhausting!

If we are committed to creating work and personal life that is balanced and fulfilling, if we want to fully express our unique gifts and be of service, it is necessary to consciously evaluate and eliminate the tolerations standing in our way. Here are some ideas on how to do that:

Appraise. Make an honest appraisal of what you are tolerating in each of the areas of your life: environment, health, work, money, relationship and so on. Write down everything that annoys you or that you feel you are putting up with. You will likely come up with more than 100 of these tolerations!

Choose. Based on your values and goals, you get to choose. What will you say “no” to? “Yes?” Make sure the “yeses” really excite you. Commit to making them real!

Plan. With the support of your coach, friends or family, develop a strategy for eliminating these tolerations. You don’t have to do it alone—in fact, it’s more fun to partner up or create a support team.

Verify. Create accountability around your goals, with specific deadlines for eliminating tolerations. How many and which ones will you eliminate each day?

Evaluate. Examine each underlying limited belief that has kept you putting up with these things. Again, get support to help you break through them. You may be so close to some of these beliefs that you can’t fully recognize them for what they are.

Appreciate. Take an honest look at what you are getting out of keeping things as they are. There is always some kind of payoff for whatever is going on in your life. Who in your life—or what part of you—does not want things to change? Appreciate that person or part, and look for ways for it to be win-win for all concerned.

Request. Remember that complaints are usually unspoken requests. What requests do you need to make?

As you eliminate tolerations, you will feel the joy of being at choice, an increase in your vitality and a sense of empowerment. And then YOU will be in the driver’s seat…and won’t that be a beautiful and worthwhile ride!

So now it is your turn. What are you tolerating? Share your thoughts and ideas below.

To your success and happiness,
The Team at Edge Of Change

In Loving Memory

Somehow it doesn’t feel right saying “Happy Memorial Day”.

Happy is not how I would describe remembering the deaths of almost  1.4 million Americans that died while in service to our country during one conflict or another.

I’m happy to be alive. I’m happy to have friends and family to spend my life with. I’m happy for the day off so I can have a barbecue. I’m happy that I can pursue even more happiness because of the freedom that was won and is still fought for by those serving today. Even more than happy I’m grateful.

I’m happy, I’m proud and I’m grateful, to be and live in America.

Remember the fallen, thank those that have served, pray that those now serving come home whole, and in gratitude, fly the Flag on Memorial Day.

Have a Grateful Memorial Day. Celebrate the pursuit of happiness.

We will too.

The team at Edge of Change

 

Courage is the First Step to Change

Happy first day of Spring… I do love Spring time. I can see it all around me, the trees are blooming, flowers in all their glory, I can even smell the freshness in the air. There is proof that things are changing, new beginnings, life.

Imagine bringing the feeling of Spring into your life, the change, new beginnings, freshness, what would it take? What would be better?

Here are some thoughts of what it takes:

Courage is the First Step to Change

The initial step required for any bold action or idea is courage, because without it, nothing else can happen, especially not anything new, daring, different, contrary, challenging, or innovative. The root of the word courage is cor, the Latin word for heart.  Courage originally meant “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” It takes courage to come up with a new idea and state, champion, and implement it. It takes courage to say that we disagree with a decision, policy, or strategy. It takes courage to speak out, risk the criticisms of others, and be different.

Courage is being brave enough to reach beyond the boundaries created by our existing, often deeply held, limitations, fears, and beliefs. If people do not claim what they want, they become victims of what they don’t want.

Initiating change of any kind is possible when we are courageous enough to take the necessary action. Making positive change takes courage, loving oneself and loving what we do. Every time we are courageous, we make those around us a little braver, too.

You may not have Control, however you do have Power.

Power is making a difference in our life, and the life of others, one person or many people who come across your path. As a Leader, you have this power in small and great ways every day.  A key reason to be courageous is that your perspective makes a difference. Real power does not come from the control you wish you had, it is from the ability to make present-moment choices from your own heart’s deepest truths.

Making Your Unique Contribution

The day-to-day challenges you face and overcome support you in recognizing who you truly are and what you want. You are a unique individual with a unique role to play in the transformation of Leadership and its impact. Your perspective and gifts are needed. You may not fully know or have logical awareness of what your gifts are. And in your heart, something deep inside you knows who you are.  Perfection is not required.

By you being yourself, by bringing something no one else can do exactly like you can, you make a difference. Your quirky self, confused self, and self that does not know the answers are a part of the solution. Your unique sense of humor, unique way of loving, working, and being in relationship also are parts of the solution.

You have choice in how to respond to day-to-day problems. To bring more of your unique contribution into your everyday choices, do the following things:

  • Ask what is true for you at the present time.
  • Set a foundation of what is most important to you.
  • Notice what you think, feel, and believe.
  • Observe where your choices really come from.
  • Change your mind, which is the prerogative of men and women.
  • Align with the reality you want to create.
  • Take Action

What I hope to contribute to you during this month of new beginnings is that you see that you are already enough. The question I invite you to consider is:

What shifts and opportunities might be possible, as I live more fully from my heart?

Below share your thougths and Ideas…

To your success and happiness,
Corinne

 

The Power of Negative Thinking

The Power of Negative Thinking

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When something traumatic happens in our life – we lose our top client, our job, discover that we are sick, or separate from our spouse we are often told to focus what we have left. The common wisdom is that thinking about the good things will help us avoid the depression that may follow an event like this. While this works to some degree, new research suggests that thinking about what life would be like if we subtracted one of the “things we have left” may actually make us feel much better.

Before reading further, test it out. What would your life be like if you had never met your spouse? What if you had never gotten the job you think most fondly about? What if you woke up tomorrow and discovered you were blind? Simply by traveling down this mental path of negative thought, we discover new reasons to appreciate the things we have, and we experience more pleasure in these things.

The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology recently published four studies that all prove the power of negative thinking. In one, people who reminisced about how they met their partner reported a lesser degree of satisfaction in their relationship than those asked to imagine what their life would be like if they never met their partner in the first place. In others, students were asked to either write about a positive event of their choice and how it changed their life, or choose a positive event and write about their life as though it had never happened. The students who imagined that the event never happened also reported greater degrees of happiness and satisfaction with their life than those who simply wrote about the event. The implications of this research are amazing. It suggests that we are taking the long way to happiness by thinking “positively” and that simply subtracting the elements of our life we are grateful for leads us to become more joyful and appreciative about our life.

It is all too easy to become depressed about the future of our business or our jobs these days. The economic crisis has been dragging on for too long and the instinct to either fret about the future or dream about the past can be overpowering. By making this information a part of our work life we can find a path to follow what will lead us to the future success we dream of and hope for. Imagine what your business would be like without a key employee, or what your life would be like if you never took the risk of starting your own business. How about that key client that helped change your business model? By focusing on those things we would hate to live without in our work life, we gain invaluable and potentially surprising insight into the directions we need to be moving toward in these tough economic times.

Call to Action:
What are you most grateful for in life? Discover the appreciation you feel by mentally subtracting that one thing from your life. You can do this in your journal or in an email to me.

Letting Go Of The Expert

When I first encountered this concept of letting go of the expert, I thought: That is crazy, I’ve educated myself and worked hard to become an expert, why would I let it go?!

Perhaps the most understandable way to start this discussion is to discover what is an expert. Webster’s defines an expert as: A person with a high degree of knowledge or skill in a particular area. Some synonyms: master, proficient, and whiz. The suggestion is that you have arrived, and your work is done. OK, that sounds pretty good, so why do I want to let go of that?

Let’s also look at the reverse of expert as in a learner and a discoverer. Learner: again Webster’s definitions: To gain knowledge or mastery of by study. Discoverer: to obtain knowledge or awareness of something not known before, as through observation, study listening.

So why let go? Because letting go could lighten your workload, reduce your stress and responsibilities and open the door to incredible discoveries and personal and professional growth for yourself and your team.  Are you interested?

Here are some ideas that have been shared with me. After all, I am not the expert. I, too, am in the learning process. Review the concepts and choose what works for you. There is no right answer only exploration into possibility.

Consider these options:
When we present ourselves in the world as an expert, whether it be at home: as a parent or spouse, or at work: as a manager, we are opening a communication channel, one that most often is one way. It is up to us the expert: to distribute the information in a way it can be heard and understood, weigh the consequences, to make the decisions, get cooperation or accomplish the tasks ourselves, set a timeline, determine what is success and take the credit for success and or the failure. Whew! Granted, we are basing our efforts on time-tested expertise, this is a good thing, and there are times that this is the best method, as well as the best use of our time, energy and resources. There is little room for growth for the expert or the team in this situation as the task is to disseminate expertise in an effort to create the outcome upon which we have decided.

When we present ourselves as a learner or discoverer we also open the channel for communication, and in this instance, the communication is more likely to be two-way. We listen, ask questions and receive input from various sources. We have the chance to make changes based upon the input we have encountered. We may discover a better method or process through this discovery. We will probably get a more thorough buy-in by our team if they have some input to the process and outcome. We are not necessarily alone in determining what is considered success, neither are we totally responsible for the tasks at hand or the outcome. The result can be a workload spread over several more willing members, less stress, and an excellent opportunity for both personal and professional growth. As a learner we can add to our pool of knowledge, and potentially grow through the experience of collaboration.

True, you no longer have total control of what the actual outcome may look like, and it could possibly be even better than you could imagine. And the trade off may be worth it: If you gain time to work on other projects, what if your team is more motivated with their role of contribution and accomplishes more, if the atmosphere in the office improves with their added input, almost anything is possible. Your team is also given the opportunity for personal and professional growth so they can potentially contribute even more in the future.

Here is a simple example of how I learned to let go of being the expert and the effect on my quality of life.

I dislike doing dishes; as a matter of fact other than eating brussel sprouts it is my least favorite task in life. My husband promised that if I did the cooking, which I love, he would do the dishes. Wow! He continued to explain that his Mom taught him how to do dishes and that she always said he was terrific at it! Double WOW! So the bargain was made. I cooked and he did the dishes.

What I immediately discovered is that if I stand at my place of expert and review his work, he doesn’t do it the way I would do it myself. I began to approach Michael on this subject of his expertise. Then I stopped myself and thought: If I get to be the expert here, I also get to do the dishes. If I become the discoverer and encourager, I get to have half an hour of quiet time for myself after the dinner hour.

The next time I visited with my Mother-in- Law, I mentioned what a great dishwasher Michael is and thanked her for teaching him so well. She winked at me and I realized she had always had that half hour of quiet time. We chatted and smiled while Michael did the dishes.

Coaching Challenge:

Look at your world and ask yourself if there are times when being the expert is holding you or your team back? Pick a situation and become the discoverer and learner and smile!