Most of us can pretty quickly point to the areas in our lives that we’re not happy with. The answer to asking ourselves the question, “what’s not working?” is rarely a surprise. But the problem that most of us have when reflecting on our sticky spots is that we simply slap a label on it and then shut down or become self critical.
The truth is:
Self criticism offers no clarity.
Think back to a time when you were getting overly critical with yourself. Did you come up with any solutions for the issue you were dealing with? Not likely. Your mind just kept going around in circles about how you should have done this or that…not helpful or resourceful in any way.
If letting go of what’s not working, or finding actionable solutions is the goal, then we have to try a new approach.
Pull out a pen and a piece of paper (I HIGHLY suggest writing this out) and answer these questions:
What is weighing you down? (Heavy? Burdensome?)
What do you fantasize about changing or getting rid of?
What have you bitched about on more than 3 occasions?
What would you love to never do again?
And then ask yourself this question, which you might want to spend some extra time on…
Why? Why haven’t you let this go…yet? What expectations do you have of yourself and others that keeps you stuck in this situation?
And then…take a deep breath. Reread what you wrote and allow this to sink in.
Then, off the top of your head:
‘What ACTIONABLE steps can you take to change this situation?’
Write them down.
Maybe you don’t know the answers yet. That’s okay. Because taking the time to get clear about why it isn’t working, and why you are still dealing with it, will eventually lead to ideas.
You can also do this for the less intense things in your life too. Maybe the clutter in your drawers is weighing you down. (That’s true for me!)
Why is this an issue for you? What are your expectations about yourself? Did someone expect you to keep everything neat and tidy when you were a kid? Do you still feel that way now? If so, schedule times to get rid of that crap. Or maybe now you realize that, despite your upbringing, you don’t really care about clutter. Great! Drop the expectation about being a neat and tidy person!
Getting clear about our bigger issues can be tough or easy depending on your level of clarity. You start with asking, why it’s still a problem and what your expectations are around it. Your answers will give you the clarity you need to handle the situation. And that makes it easier to take the necessary actions to create the change you want. And, getting rid of the little issues can open up way more space (and time!) to handle the big stuff.
So, write out your answers to the above questions and see if you can actually DO something to change those situations. Both the big stuff and the little stuff.
And if you want support with this, get in touch and we’ll tackle it together.
And as always, retweet, repost, and forward to your friends.