Make Sense Out of Change

“Make sense out of change by plunging into it, moving with it, and joining in the dance.”

—Author Unknown

Image of boy diving from a boat

Image from Lakehouse Lifestyle

As we move through the stages of adult life, most of us become a bit more set in our ways. There is nothing particularly wrong with that. We often find comfort in our rituals, habits, and routines.

Without a direct invitation from us, however, the world increasingly knocks or, in some cases, pounds on our doors, bringing all kinds of change into our personal and professional worlds.

What if, instead of bolting our doors or barricading ourselves into our comfortable worlds, we opened ourselves to more opportunities and adventures by moving, plunging and dancing with these changes?

EXERCISE:

Where would a more open, welcoming, “try it on” approach to the changes around you make the biggest, most positive difference? Consider opening this door, or better yet, stepping right out there and joining the dance!

The Past Should Be a Springboard

“The past should be a springboard, not a hammock.”

—Ivern Ball, Dadaist Poet and Writer

Image of a man standing on the end of a diving board

Image from DivSanDiego

I once heard that as we age, the ideal “Happy Hour” is a good nap.

Who doesn’t enjoy some well-needed rest to rejuvenate from time to time?

Our past achievements and successes can sometimes lull us into complacency or even a bit of a snooze by reliving the memory as if it was happening in the present.

Today’s quote urges us to see past events as a springboard for even more remarkable achievements and successes that lie ahead of us.

EXERCISE:

How can and will you use your past accomplishments and success as a springboard to dive into the deep end of your greatest potential?

Now is the ideal time

“NOW is the ideal time.”

—Author Unknown

Clock with "Make Time for What Matters" written on it

Image from LinkedIn

The first thing that came to my mind when reading today’s quote was, “For What?”

If we stopped there, we would simply be puzzled for a moment and then get on with our day. That, of course, is not the purpose of The Quotable Coach series!

It is powerful statements and the questions they generate that make us do the work of personal inquiry. We then reap the rewards of discovery through what can be revealing responses.

EXERCISE:

Examine your “For What?” answer as it relates to the following areas. Then take at least one step or leap outside your comfort zone to act upon it:

  • An important relationship
  • A work-related matter
  • Your health and fitness
  • Life balance
  • Your finances
  • Faith or spirituality
  • Community
  • A hobby or avocation
  • Travel and Adventure

Feel free to add to this list and let me know what other areas you identified.

The faintest pencil is better than the strongest memory

“The faintest pencil is better than the strongest memory.”

⏤Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism

Image of a pencil on a table

Image from Flickr by Chris

Sam Horn was one of the speakers/conversation starters at a coaching conference I attended last year. One of her favorite sayings is “Ink it when you think it.” She always has a notebook in her hand.

Productivity guru David Allen, who wrote Getting Things Done often advises his readers that brains were meant for thinking, not as a storage device for information of limited value.

EXERCISE:

How would an “Ink it when you think it” strategy foster less stress and far more productivity in your life?

Nobody in the history of the world has ever washed their rental car

“Nobody in the history of the world has ever washed their rental car.”

⏤Author Unknown

Image of a car in the shower

Image from ultimatecarwashanddetail.com

Are you familiar with the “Endowment Effect”?

I wasn’t either, until I learned that it is our tendency to undervalue things that aren’t ours, and to overvalue things because we already own them.

Do you, like many people, have drawers, closets, or even entire rooms filled with items that you haven’t used or worn in years? What are these items worth to you, and what might it be costing you in having them take up space in your world?

Consider what you would actually pay for these items, if you didn’t own them already.

EXERCISE:

Imagine that you are planning to change your place of residence. The two criteria I’d like you to consider as you go through the things you own are:

  1. You will be downsizing your living and storage space by 25-35 percent.
  2. You must pay a substantial extra fee to bring all non-essential items along.

What would stay, and what would go?

What actions will you take based on your answers?

Great ideas have a very short half-life.

“Great ideas have a very short half-life.”

-John M. Shanahan, Creator of Hooked on Phonics

image of biz card with the quote on it

Image from ofilispeaks.com

When was the last time you read a book, listened to a podcast, or attended a workshop or seminar? What percent of what you learned did you retain, or better yet, put into practice?

Without going into a lot of brain science and learning theory, it is clear that if ideas are not acted upon quickly, they never make it into long-term memory, much less into tangible results.

One of my past coaching clients even named her company Info-to-Action, for just this reason.

EXERCISE:

What personal or professional idea at the top of your priority list is about to expire through inaction or procrastination? How soon will you put this info into action?

Action Review

FRIDAY REVIEW: ACTION

What does it mean to take action in your life? Here are a few action-related posts you may have missed. Click the links to read the full message.

“Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

 

 

 

 

“It is hard to fly when something is weighing you down.”

 

 

 

 

“A person’s actions will tell you everything you need to know.”

 

 

 

 

The Day’s Resolutions

“I think in terms of the day’s resolutions, not the year’s.”

-Henry Moore, 20th Century British Sculptor and Artist

Image from cakewhiz.com

Why do we do it?

You know what I mean. Why do we make New Year’s Resolutions, knowing darn well that as much as 90% of them are abandoned by the end of February.

Perhaps it is because a year is a pretty long time, and it’s hard to set out on a journey whose goal is so far off. It almost guarantees that obstacle and barriers will slow us down or stop us completely.

Today’s quote is like the one about eating an elephant one bite at a time, or that every journey begins with a single step. Perhaps daily resolutions are the way to achieve what we deeply desire—one day at a time.

EXERCISE:

Where and on what priority issues would making 365 daily resolutions help you make 2017 your best year yet?

Grab a Star

“Most look up and admire the stars. A champion climbs a mountain and grabs one.”

—Author Unknown

Image of man on mountaintop grabbing stars

Image from CDP Safe

What stars are you reaching for these days? To what degree do you leap out of bed each morning, eager to jump into your personal or professional quest?

Perhaps you, like many, simply examine and admire the efforts or accomplishments of others through social media, or more traditional methods.

You may also compare yourself to others and get excited to summon your own “Go For It!” perspective.

EXERCISE:

What personal or professional mountains will you begin or continue to climb today, to grab your own star with the heart of a champion?

Talkers are no good doers

“Talkers are no good doers.”

—William Shakespeare, Richard III, Act 1, Scene 3

Image of Shakespeare with the quote

Shakespeare sure had a way with words!

I had to re-read today’s quote several times, letting it percolate for a while before I chose it for today’s post.

What was your first interpretation?

What other meanings might it have for you?

I first thought about an individual being all talk and no action. Next, I considered whether talkers, or those too busy being interesting to be interested, were bad people, arrogant, with excessive egos.

What is the message you prefer, or relate to the most?

EXERCISE:

What are your views on people who talk far more than they listen?

What would others say about your propensity to talk versus listen?

What relationship does this issue have with what actually gets done, and what you learn?

Feel free to respond to this post with your thoughts and perspectives.