Pay Attention

As a Mom, I feel like I’m always saying “pay attention!” With two toddlers who were born into a family that I swear is genetically predisposed to always knock things over, trip, whack our heads/elbows/knees on anything we walk by and just generally prove to the world that we fully comprehend what “klutz” means, “pay attention” is one of my go-to phrases.

I was thinking about this a lot over this past weekend, in particular. In addition to the normal reminders to pay attention as my almost 2-year old tried to step off a stool that was much higher than he realized and my 3-year old marched confidently into a parking lot without looking both ways, there were a few other moments. In fact, a few big things happened and honestly? None of it was a surprise.

I admit that I had a hard time wrapping my head around how such big news could have such little impact on me. Why didn’t I feel more upset? More hurt? More angry? More frustrated? More stressed?

That’s when I realized: it’s because I’m paying attention.

My 3-year old’s tantrums and selective hearing? It’s a developmental leap.

My husband’s grumpy behavior? He’s overtired as he approaches the end of his most recent busy season.

Another issue with the house? That’s just what comes with home ownership.

Gaining greater awareness is more than being aware of what you’re thinking and feeling. It’s about being both self- and world- aware, of watching and paying attention to what’s happening around you. It’s about being aware of what’s happening in yourself and in others. It’s being cognizant of changes.

When you learn how to be aware, you open yourself to getting more information about any situation. With greater information, you create the ability to use that information to make wiser, more intentional decisions. You create the ability to respond instead of react. The same stuff still happens, but now you are different and calmer when it happens.

So when you learn to stop and notice, then choose your response with intention, fewer things can rattle you and, as a result, you improve your responses.

Take Action
We often encourage our clients to start their self-discovery work by learning how to tune in to themselves. Once they’ve achieved this step, we move on to world-awareness, of paying attention to what’s happening around us. Take 10 minutes today to just observe. Observe you: your feelings, thoughts and actions. Observe your world: what is going on around you. Then take a moment to ask yourself, how can you bring your best to the situations, events and people in your world?

By Kristin Allaben

Consider reading Unhinged – How Do You Act When Things Don’t Go Your Way?

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Finding Your Fit: Don’t Forget You

The Forte Factor is focused on helping our clients discover, develop and live their strengths. This means equipping them with knowledge and tools to help them make informed decisions about what is the right fit for them. To do so requires intentional learning – learning who you are, understanding your strengths and passions and recognizing your liabilities. Having a better understanding of each of these pieces gives you the opportunity to get a more complete picture of yourself.

When you truly know who you are, what gets you excited, what you shy away from, what fires you up – that’s when you are fully capable of identifying the right fit for you in work and life. You’re better able to define happiness and success and work toward achieving it.

Kristin Allaben, Certified Greatness Zone Coach and COO, The Forte Factor

Kristin Allaben is an example of this approach to finding her fit. You may know her as a Certified Greatness Zone Coach and COO of The Forte Factor, but she followed an interesting path to get here.

Q: What did you go to school for?

I went to Bentley University and got my degree in Information Design and Corporate Communication with a minor in Psychology. I absolutely loved every class I took specific to my major and minor. I always looked forward to class, and never thought of homework or projects as work. I knew this is what I wanted to do, but I didn’t know what it could look like for a career until I stumbled on a PR internship and fell in love with the industry.

Q: What did you love about it?

The fast-paced days. The need to always be on and capable of thinking creatively and strategically. The need to be able to do things quickly and efficiently, to shift gears at a moment’s notice, if needed. The importance of being organized to ensure things always ran smoothly.

Q: What made you leave?

I worked at Schwartz Communications for the better part of my career and absolutely loved every moment of it. Sure, there were hard days – I certainly won’t pretend that’s not the case, just like at any job – but I was passionate about the work and was lucky enough to be able to take advantage of a number of opportunities there. I moved to a different agency shortly after the company was acquired and started to think about the future, beyond promotions and career status. My husband and I just bought a house and we were thinking family, dog, etc. I started to think the demanding role I was so passionate about might not allow for the future I had envisioned. So, I considered other options, including how I could keep doing PR but on a less demanding schedule. I took a job doing in-house PR, working for one company instead of managing multiple client engagements at a firm. It was perhaps the best move I made because it was most definitely a bad fit situation. It forced me to reflect on what it was that I loved about the PR world, and if it was something I really wanted to keep doing.

Q: How did you decide what to do next?

Believe it or not, I actually turned to The Forte Factor and took the Talent Assessment. I felt like I had been so focused on moving my career forward that I needed to reconnect with myself, to be sure I was staying true to what I really loved to do and what I was really good at. That last part played a big role in every decision I made from that point forward. I had forgotten to combine what I loved to do with what I was good at.

Q: When did you discover that your calling was doing something else? What did you do about it?

The work I did to reflect and reintroduce myself to me helped me realize something big. One of my greatest strengths is organization. Working in the PR world, organization was critical to ensure clients showed up to where they needed to be on time, and that you never forgot the key details from any conversation you had, among other things. But often, my organization became a joke. I was often told that my need to keep things organized kept me too bogged down, preventing me from being truly strategic or creative, and that it would hinder my opportunity to grow any further. And that’s when I realized that I needed to find something that combined my talents (being organized, being focused) with my passion (helping people, communication, telling stories).

And that’s when I discovered being a Coach was the right fit for me. This, combined with my role as the COO at The Forte Factor, brings together so many of my strengths, talents and passions.

Q: Who are your role models?

I have a variety of role models for different reasons. Though I know it’s cliché to highlight my parents as role models, they really are. My Mom is a huge role model; she raised my sisters and me as a single mother and somehow we all made it out alive (and each of us credit her for the independent women we have become). I look at my Dad as a role model who bravely followed his true self and made big decisions to be happy in work and life. I see my kids as role models because they remind me that feeling every emotion is ok and good, and they remind me that life goes by too fast to worry about the small things (all the time). And my husband because he consistently amazes me with the ability to balance an extremely high-demanding and stressful job with being an amazing husband and father, and making it look easy.

Q: What is one thing you are still working on that you know you can do better?

I’m quick to judge and quick to react. I’m working hard to remember to respond instead of react, and I’ll be the first to admit it’s a work in progress! Some days, it comes much easier than others.

Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d give to someone who may not feel like they’re in the right fit job or position in life? What can they do to find their right fit?

Take some time to get to know you. Reflect on the things that are working right now and the things that aren’t. Are there areas where you feel stuck? Why do you feel that way? Are there areas where you are genuinely happy? Why? Reintroduce yourself to you. You’ll be amazed what you can uncover.

Could you benefit from some life coaching? Contact us to get started with a free, 15-minute introductory call.

Consider reading Are You The Great Pretender?

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Here’s Your Permission Slip

What’s holding you back? What’s keeping you from doing what you want? From pursuing your dream(s)? From living your best life?

I’m here to tell you those obstacles don’t exist for you anymore. I’m wiping them away for you. In fact, here is your permission slip to be who you authentically are. To identify what makes you happy and go get it. To define what success is to you and to make it happen. To step out of the role you’ve been siloed into so you can redefine what you want your life to be.

Here is your permission slip to be yourself.

Our world is full of voices telling us what we should look like, who we can love, what we’re supposed to do with our lives. What’s considered acceptable for who we are, based on the world’s definition of us.

But what if, with this permission slip, you decide to take a stand? What if you decide that what the world dictates is not right for you? What if you decide to find your own happy? How will you change? And with that change, what can you now bring to the world?

Remember this quote from Buckminster Fuller, a 20th century inventor and visionary: “What is it on this planet that needs doing that I know something about that probably won’t happen unless I take responsibility for it?”

You are responsible for every decision you make. Your life is yours to live. Here’s your permission slip. Go live it.

Take Action
Take 10 minutes today to ask yourself these three questions:

  1. What makes a good day for me?
  2. What makes me happy?
  3. When do I feel successful?

Look at your answers. Do they align to the life you’re living? If not, take your permission slip, and make it happen.

By Kristin Allaben

Consider reading Unhinged – How Do You Act When Things Don’t Go Your Way

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How Your Disengaged Employees Are Impacting Your Customers

Your employees are either building or eroding your brand. Think about their daily interactions with any of your customers. Are they encouraging customers to come back and bring their friends? Or do their actions send customers running and complaining to anyone who will listen?

Either way your brand is affected.

We know that to activate customer loyalty, the organization (and its employees) not only needs to know what customers need and to provide it all the time (this is what drives satisfaction), but to then also choose to do some extras. Ken Blanchard calls it the “+1” in his book Raving Fans. Emeril Lagasse calls it “Bam!” I call it your “Standout!”

Getting it right is great, but doing something more for customers is required to move from satisfaction to loyalty. Both need to happen, every day, all the time.

Here’s the hard question: are your employees delivering this type of customer service to every customer all the time?

Consider this: the Gallup organization shares that nearly 70% of employees are disengaged. This means that nearly 70% of employees do just enough not to get fired, or sometimes do even less.

What does this mean for you? They’re doing just enough with your customers.

Disengaged employees sometimes get it right for your customers. Sometimes. That means that sometimes customers will be satisfied. But satisfied and loyal are two very different things. Disengaged employees will rarely, if ever, consider doing the extras to move a customer to loyal.

Why should you care? Because in our world of intense competition, organizations must know, manage and provide exceptional customer experience in order to grow and succeed. The greater your employee disengagement, the greater the likelihood your customers are receiving average service, which could leave you struggling to achieve your performance goals.

So how can you identify your disengaged employees and start making changes? It starts with greater awareness. Pay attention and notice their performance, effort and response. And ask questions.

Employee surveys are great when used with intention; same with customer satisfaction surveys. But don’t administer them without an action plan in place. These surveys can provide you with valuable information you need to help you make intentional changes to make your workplace better for your employees. And when this is done successfully, it can help deliver a better, more consistent customer service to drive toward loyal customers.

Take Action
There are two critical “experiences” to constantly watch and improve: the employee experience and the customer experience. The employee experience (degree of engagement) drives the customer experience (degree of loyalty). What are you doing on a daily basis to understand where employee engagement levels are and what can improve them?

Remember that employee engagement has the greatest impact on your ability to create a brand that is associated with delivering consistent and exceptional service. This is what ultimately creates a level of customer loyalty where they happily refer you to their friends.

By Jay Forte

Consider reading Don’t Do Average. Make it an Experience

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This article originally appeared on Vistage’s Talent Strategies Network on August 27, 2019: https://my.vistage.com/networks/talent_strategies/blog/2019/08/27/what-your-disengaged-employees-do-to-your-customers.

Hindsight is 20/20

In just a few short months, it will be 2020. It’s pretty amazing considering so many of us can vividly remember the “Y2K scare” as we anxiously awaited what we thought would be the world shutting down. How is that already 20 years ago?

Time flies by. I remember my parents saying time only goes by faster as you get older and I completely get it now, especially as I watch my two little boys figuring our their world and we count down the weeks for baby boy #3 to join us. I swear I just blink and a year goes by.

But almost simultaneously, I wonder how it’s possible that so much has changed in such little time. My passions and talents still remain the same, but the things that matter most to me have varied and, as a result, the way I do things and the reason I do things have changed.

We talk a lot about how life likes to present us with both opportunities and challenges, and both are great teachers when you learn where to see the lesson. Next year, I think we’ll start to see and hear the phrase “hindsight is 20/20” a lot as people look to explain away a mistake or a poor decision they’ve made.

So, before the phrase becomes overused to a fault, I’m taking a stand: “hindsight is 20/20” should never be an excuse. It should never be the reason why you believe something could have been done better or differently.

As a coach, I guide my clients to learn from their past but to spend more time in their present. With greater awareness in this moment, more options become available and possibilities increase. Spending time dwelling on the past distracts you from today, the place and time where life is happening.

So, instead of “hindsight is 20/20,” I’m encouraging everyone to replace it with a more productive phrase: 20/20 vision. This is about seeing clearly, not looking back. Though there are lessons when we review our past, what is more valuable is to be fully tuned in and present in the moment – to have 20/20 vision today. That takes effort, intention and commitment. It requires getting past habits and routines and seeing things new and fresh.

So, as we approach 2020, don’t think to yourself, “well, hindsight is 20/20 and I should have done XYZ.” Instead, use it as a reminder to bring your best and clearest vision to your day. Have 20/20 vision as you look at where you are and what is possible. Use this to see things clearly and to get energized for all that life can offer.

Let’s get started.

Take Action
Challenge yourself to take 10 minutes out of your day to create three lists. On one list, write down everything you love to do. On the second list, write down everything you’re really good at. And on the last list, write down everything that really matters to you.

You’ll discover that the real challenge is not to find the time to do it, but instead to avoid using each list to create the next one. There may be some overlap, but the point of this exercise is to illustrate that, for example, you may have existing passions (what you love to do) and talents (what you’re really good at) that are aligned but you may never have considered exploring as a job, career or hobby.

Let the term 20/20 not make you focus on hindsight, but rather be an inspiration to see clearly today. See the real you. Define what makes you happy. Find your fit in today’s world. Then go make it happen.

By Kristin Allaben

Consider reading Managing Your Self-Talk

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Three Things to Amp Up the Effectiveness of Your Meetings

Meetings. They fill our days. And let’s be honest: most of them are unproductive or poorly managed. The result is that we waste a lot of time that most of us don’t have available to waste; we are already overcommitted.

Like it or not, meetings will always be part of the workday, so it is critical that you make them effective (they achieve what they should do) and efficient (they do it in as little time as possible). Remember: the value of meetings is what they accomplish or inspire, not just the act of meeting.

In my more than 20 years of coaching, consulting and working to amplify performance, I’ve discovered three things you can do to amp up the effectiveness of your meetings. 

1. Make it Personal. Meetings are more effective when those attending can relate to each other. For that, we need to remember that we are each human. So consider starting each meeting with a quick run around the room, asking everyone to share any of the following:

  • What is the best thing that has happened to you today?
  • What is something personal that you want us to know about?
  • What is a success or achievement that you are proud of?
  • What is something that we would never have guessed about you?

When we share our humanity, we connect at a deeper level, which encourages greater sharing of ideas, less apprehension to contribute and, therefore, more productive meetings. Connecting personally builds a stronger bond than just meeting to solve problems, discuss ideas or share information.

Devise a bank of questions you can open your meeting with to help those involved see their shared humanity.

2. Define the objectives and expectations. According to Habit #2 in Stephen Covey’s book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, “begin with the end with mind.” With clarity of a direction, goal, objective or expectation, the meeting can police itself to stay focused. Without this clarity, a meeting can run in all directions, distracting the participants and wasting time.

I call this defining the goalpost. Ask yourself: what will we have to achieve to make this a successful meeting? Define it. Share it. Hold all meeting attendees to its achievement.

3. Use an agenda to stay on task. This might seem like a no brainer, but some of the most ineffective meetings are often the result of running with an unclear agenda, or no agenda at all. Even with clear objectives, meetings can wander because of the diversity of the meeting members. Use an agenda to stay focused on what matters and to stay committed to the time allotted to each topic. And ensure your meeting has a time or agenda manager, someone who keeps everyone accountable for their time, contribution and ensuring the meeting continues to move forward.

Nobody has unlimited time; it’s why seeing your calendar fill up with meeting after meeting can be so frustrating. So, make the time to define the topics that need to be covered, understand the time required to adequately discuss each topic and identify the goal(s) of the meeting. This creates the ability to use time wisely and to ensure the meeting attendees to stay focused.

I never attend a meeting I don’t have an agenda for. An agenda is not only a time saver, but it also helps me know how to prepare, how much time I will need to provide and what the meeting will accomplish. With this information, I can be effective in supporting it and making good use of my and the meeting’s time.

Take Action
Before you attend your next meeting, insist on knowing the objective or goal of the meeting and see the agenda. Then, once in the meeting, be sure to first make it personal and be committed to living to the focus and time define in the agenda.

Meetings are truly an invaluable tool when they are organized and run correctly. They can be the place where great things happen, or they can be an abject waste of time. Take control of them to get them to deliver great things for you and your organization.

By Jay Forte

Consider reading Managers: How to Identify and Correct Your Blind Spots

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The Power of Collaborative and Collective Genius

I recently worked with a client who struggled with several difficult and challenging problems. The CEO of this organization confided that not being able to solve this particular situation was stressful and frustrating.

As a coach, my core belief is that each of us is extremely capable, though most people don’t come close to accessing or using their potential. This is due partly to the fact that we don’t know how capable we are, and we are not regularly asked to bring our best ideas to the challenges we face, particularly in the workplace.

So, I brought this question to my client for consideration. A group of the organization’s employees were working through a mindful problem-solving skill training program, a perfect time to activate their thinking and have them use what they were learning to fully understand the challenge the CEO and organization were facing and then brainstorm possible solutions. They were not to solve; instead they were to help the CEO out by using their diverse perspectives and share their best ideas.

The goal of this was for the organization to learn how to better engage the collaborative and collective genius of others to see, consider and brainstorm – to expand what they consider before they choose and act. It was to give them permission to consider moving past the conventional and recurrent ideas to ones that were wiser and more sustainable.

It worked. A solution came from the greater number of ideas generated.

To activate your teams’ collaborative and collective genius, consider the following.

  • During the job candidate interview process, test and assess your potential future employees’ ability to think creatively and critically. Though these are skills, many people have not learned or developed them. Ensure all who join your organization are able to play big with ideas to contribute and encourage the contributions of others.
  • Create a workplace culture that requires all employees to contribute ideas to improve the organization. Don’t exclude any role in the organization from collaborating and contributing. Each employee has a great number of life’s experiences that inspire ideas. The “best ideas” are not exclusive to managerial or leader roles. Your front-line employees have ideas and perspectives that may be just the solution needed.
  • Applaud ideas, not just solutions. Most workplace cultures value solutions more than ideas and critical thinking. The result is that most organizations don’t give themselves enough ideas from which to choose the best. Remember the adage, “To have a great idea, you first have to have a lot of ideas.” Encourage ideas to be able to create solutions.

There is great truth in the expression, “None of us is as smart as all of us.” The role of manager, leader or CEO does not make you smarter than the rest. Rather, the smart managers, leaders and CEOs constantly source ideas, information and perspectives from everyone in the organization. Use the genius of your workforce to be adaptable and resilient in today’s workplace.

Take Action
What project, issue or challenge would benefit from your organization’s collaborative and collective genius? How will you assemble a team and guide them in how to collaborate to share ideas to help you solve both small and large challenges?

By Jay Forte

Consider reading Pay or Performance – What Really Activates Employee Performance?

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NOTE: The full article appeared on Vistage Florida Speaker Spotlight on August 5, 2019: https://research.vistageflorida.com/the-power-of-collaborative-and-collective-genius

Know Your Limits (Guardrails)

We talk a lot about discovering, developing and using your unique strengths to have the life you want. It’s so ingrained in the way we coach that it’s written right into our title! And by making the effort to know yourself – your strengths and liabilities – you also create awareness of your limits, something we refer to as your guardrails. Your guardrails help you identify the edges of what you consider acceptable.

For example, if you value authenticity, you encourage yourself and others to be who they really are. So, when you see others being manipulated to be or act against their own values or beliefs, it challenges or triggers you.

Notice the word trigger. Though it typically has a negative connotation, when you have great self-awareness, it becomes an opportunity. You may be triggered to move toward action. Your opportunity exists in the action you choose: do you respond or do you react?

Responding is an intentional action. You’ve thought about the situation and your possible responses and picked the one that you think makes the most sense for the situation.

Reacting is immediate with little or no thought to how to make the situation better or any unintended consequences that may result.

I think your guardrails fall into three buckets:

  • Physical – you are aware of your health and physical condition and identify what is acceptable and not acceptable for you. You may want to run a marathon but until you are fully aware of your physical abilities, you won’t know how to wisely train or to recognize (read: admit) there may be another more appropriate activity.
  • Mental – you are aware of what you will put up with and not put up with in the way friends, family, colleagues and strangers treat you. Being aware of this helps you manage your response(s) so you can intentionally choose how to respond in any situation.
  • Personal – you are aware of who you are, and what you want and don’t want to have a happy, successful and responsible life. Being aware of this helps you to choose your response to any situation more intentionally and wisely.

Understanding your guardrails gives you clarity in a world that challenges you to make yourself fit, a world that sometimes pushes things on you that are different than what you want for yourself. But to successfully leverage the clarity your guardrails provide, to understand how to recognize your physical, mental and personal limits, you need to properly define your guardrails. Consider your values and beliefs as a starting point; they are there to help you maneuver through life.

Take Action
Make a list of your guardrails. Start by considering your values and beliefs – what you consider acceptable behavior for yourself and for others. Now make a list of your triggers. Ask yourself what’s happening in your world – whether on a large scale (national or global) or local scale (family, friends or work) – that makes you feel angry, frustrated or sad. Notice where those lists overlap. Where do you find your values and beliefs are challenged and how can you make a greater effort to intentionally choose your response to generate a more productive outcome?

By Kristin Allaben

Consider reading Learning How to Be Self-Managed

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Staying Connected by Being Accountable

I was talking to a friend of mine who told me that each day, she and her husband put time aside to share three big moments, two things they each want to improve on, and two things that didn’t get done that day. She explained that in doing so, it helps them stay focused on what they want to improve on while not losing sight of the good things that happened that day, things that can be easily forgotten or overlooked when life takes over. In short, this is how they stay aware and mindful.

Outstanding practical wisdom. I thought this was an amazing way to not only remain connected with your partner, but to also hold each other accountable for how you want your day, week, month or even your life to be. They embrace their roles as accountability partners.

I often find that not having an accountability partner is one of the reasons why people have a hard time achieving their goals.. It’s so easy to allow yourself to slip off course with a simple, “I’ll do it tomorrow” or the casual, “I will make it up.” Just think of the number of good-intentioned New Year’s resolutions that don’t make it to the end of January.

So, as you define new goals for yourself, however large or small they may be, consider identifying an accountability partner and sharing those goals with that partner. Whether it’s a spouse, a friend, a family member, a colleague or a coach, ask your accountability partner to check-in with you to help you stay on task and to live your commitments that will keep you moving in a productive direction.

Combine this with small, actionable and easy-to-measure goals and you’ll find even reaching your stretch goals becomes more manageable and easier to achieve.

Take Action
Consider how you can implement a 3-2-2 approach to your day, like the one I shared in the opening paragraph. Maybe it’s done in the morning as you set your intentions for the day, allowing you to reflect on the good things from the day before. Maybe it’s done right before bed so you can focus on the good before closing your eyes. Maybe it’s a standing lunch date to help you stop and notice what’s happening in and around you.

Whatever the approach, consider how your life could look when you add an accountability partner to help you stay on the right path toward achieving your goals.

By Kristin Allaben

Consider reading Be Someone’s Hero

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How to Make the Most of Tough Situations

So many times in life, we get irritated, aggravated or stuck by what is going on. It could be the back-up on the highway that has you sitting in traffic. It could be rain on a day you planned a family backyard outing. It could be the promotion that was given to another employee.

These are examples of life events that sometimes don’t go our way. And for many, this starts or continues the downward spiral of disappointment and knee-jerk reactions. With this mindset, you can only focus on what is lacking or disappointing about life or work.

Those who experience these frustrations, aggravations and disappointments in life can take it out on themselves with negative self-talk or negative behaviors (i.e. drinking, buying things to feel better), or they can take it out on others by being short, critical or downright mean.

I get it. You feel bad when things don’t go your way. We all do. It’s how you manage these feelings and behaviors that helps you both stay productive and be happy, regardless of what work or life sends.

As a coach, I see this situation a lot. Blocks, challenges and disappointments are frequent reasons people approach me for coaching. They want to develop ways to navigate around these challenges and blocks so they can feel more in control, better able to perform at their job or be more present in their relationships. They don’t want to be activated by the negative events that can sometimes be part of our days. They want to be responsive instead of reactive. These are all things coaching can help with.

To help yourself out of being frustrated, aggravated or irritated, and some of the negative feelings behviors like this can inspire, consider this one-two approach that I share with my clients.

  1. Stop and notice what you are feeling. Give it a name. Label the emotion and why you are feeling it. It could be I am frustrated because this traffic is going to add an additional 30 minutes to my commute. It could be I am disappointed in myself for not being more confident and enthusiastic in my interview, so I was passed over for the promotion. It could be I am aggravated that all the great work to create the fun backyard party will go unnoticed now that it is in the garage. With these, you become clear of what you feel and why you feel it.
  2. Ask “How can I turn this into something good?” This starts to shift the energy off the hurt, disappointment and other catabolic emotions and on to more positive outcomes. How else could I use my time in the car since I am stuck in this traffic back up? How can I be more prepared for the next promotion opportunity? How can we have fun together regardless if we are outside in the backyard or in a garage? Change the energy. Change the focus. See what’s possible with what you have instead of what you wanted.

There is always more right than wrong if we learn to focus on what’s possible or what else could be done to turn anything from down to up. How you show up to the events of life is up to you. You can be down when they don’t go your way, or you can say, since this is what is going on, what else could happen here? What good things are possible now?

Take Action
This week, stop and notice when you are frustrated, aggravated or irritated. Understand it. Then shift it. Ask, “how can I turn this to good?” Soon the frustrations and their negative cousins of aggravation and irritation will hang around less. They will be replaced with contentment, acceptance and even happiness. I see it happen all the time.

By Jay Forte

Consider reading Managing Your Self-Talk

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