When unwanted results show up, and they always do, where do you put your energy and attention? On the problem or the solution?
If you’re like the majority of people, in your personal and professional life, the things you don’t want end up captivating you. You think about them. Talk about them. Wrestle with them. Worry about them and allow them to disturb your peace of mind. In the process, you unintentionally, squander opportunities to find solutions.
The next time you face a problem, instead of dwelling on the what’s wrong side of things – looking for who or what is to blame – step back and ask yourself and others this simple question. “What can I or we do to…,” fill in the blank with a statement of your preferred outcome. That small step, consciously choosing to ask yourself and others what can be done to attain more desirable results, reframes the situation from a paralyzing issue to a proactive search for outcomes.
As Winston Churchill once said, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
Swapping negative talk for solution seeking on the surface addresses the issue at hand, but on a personal level, it reduces stress. It also puts you in the right frame of mind to succeed in spite of circumstances.
With reframing, the door to a world of possibilities opens. It’s this kind of positive thinking that leads to the desired state – the solution – and protects your mental and emotional energy.
When the next problem arises, and there’s no doubt it will, respond the emotionally intelligent way. Align your energy and your intentions with the solutions, not the problem.
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