We’ve heard so much bad news this week from people close to us, it’s difficult to be positive. As a coach, I naturally look to what we can learn from this. Firstly, I’ve realised that the things that are worrying me and causing me stress are really not massive issues in the greater scheme of things. Secondly, in life, as in business, there are some things you just can’t control.
When you spend time worrying about things you can’t control, you get distracted from the things you can control. You become preoccupied, and ultimately you waste time and energy on something that has no positive outcome. The stress you create in the process makes you fixate on the wrong stuff and it immobilises you. The proverbial deer in the headlights!
If you are wasting a lot of time worrying about things you can’t control, stop it! Here’s where you need to focus your attention:
Things you CAN control
When you find yourself worrying, take a minute to examine the things you have control over. You can’t control the storm that’s brewing, but you can prepare for it. You can’t control other people’s behaviour, but you can control your reaction.
Sometimes, all you can control is your effort and your attitude. When you put your energy into the things you can control, you’ll be much more effective in dealing with the uncontrollables.
Influence vs control
Control is the unilateral ability to make something happen. Influence is the ability to affect someone else’s thinking. You can influence people and circumstances, but you can’t force things to go your way.
It is important to recognise that business leaders influence their teams, either consciously or unconsciously – and that influence can be either positive or negative.
Positive influence comes from providing an enabling workplace environment, supporting positive business values, providing the tools, resources, information and support for the people around you to get things done.
Accept the worst-case scenario
Ask yourself, “what’s the worst that can happen?” And if that happens, what would you do about it? Usually, the worst-case scenario isn’t as tragic as you might envision and there’s a good chance you’re more robust than you think. Acknowledging that things you can’t control might happen, helps you to move on and put your energy into more productive exercises.
Deliberating vs problem-solving
Replaying conversations in your head or imagining catastrophic outcomes over and over again isn’t helpful. But solving a problem is.
If you’re wasting your time mulling things over and over, change the channel in your brain. Acknowledge that your thoughts aren’t productive and get up and go do something for a few minutes to get your brain focused on something more productive.
You need to consciously and actively solve problems, and keep working on solutions to find ways to increase your chances of success.
I am a firm believer in the law of attraction. The more you think about negative outcomes, the more likely they are to occur. Conversely, when you focus on positive outcomes, you increase the chances of success.
Develop a few positive affirmations and healthy mantras that will keep you mentally strong and motivate you. “Let’s do it!” “Make it happen!” “I’ve got this!” Whatever makes you think positively.
If you need to take control of your business again, give me a call and let’s do this!