Can this be changed? Can I do something about it?
I am a firm believer of goals, plans and actions, I am convinced that if I have not gotten something in life, it is because I have not had the discipline to implement a good plan to get it, I think that is empowering. But I also recognize that sometimes some of our energy gets lost on trying to change something that will not change.
We have so many popular phrases or sayings to help us accept things and be complacent, like: “Everything is as it should be”, or “Things happen for a reason”, or “It is God’s will”. I am not discarding any of these; actually I think all of them are pretty valid and true.
Where I believe we fail is when we do not have a firm position, of either accepting it or fighting it, switching back and forth between I will do something and there is nothing to do will not help your cause. When we face challenges or difficult situations in our life we need to start handling them with a clear and definite assessment, use these two powerful coaching questions: Can this be changed? Can I do something about it?
Instead of asking (and answering those questions) sometimes we start the useless dance between frustration, anxiety and impotence; and worriedness, sadness and low energy action. But the better formula to solve your predicaments is to follow, with firm conviction, these 2 elements: acceptance and action.
Can this be changed? If the answer is no then acceptance is your word: “Everything is as it should be”, or “Things happen for a reason”, or “It is God’s will”, stop fighting the situation and accept that it is what it is. And you are not off the hook, your acceptance action is to start thinking if you want to stay in that unchangeable situation or what things you can do in the future to be able to answer “Yes, it can be changed”, only then will you be able to stop acceptance and move to the next powerful question.
Can I do something about it? If the answer is no, same situation, acceptance is your word and exactly the same process applies, your acceptance action is to start thinking on what are the things that you can change in yourself to be able to do something about it?, only when you can answer “Yes, I can do something about it” you are ready for real action. If it can change and if you can change it, then you now have all of the power, no more acceptance, it is about goal, plan and disciplined execution. The key principles of coaching.
Now this is the tricky part, our present moment, our changing reality is never a standing still moment, think about it, the second you are living your present it becomes the past and your next second arrives from the future with your new present, in a blink of an eye.
Top performers, leaders, achievers, champions, enlightened fulfilled beings are those that manage to split every second of their precious moments in life in 2 parts: the present moment where they accept everything is as it should be, and the present moment where assessing the situation they take action to think, talk or act with whatever is needed to create better futures.
May be the skill to split a second is going to take you some time, but a good beginning is to start splitting your challenges, problems, predicaments in two parts: acceptance and action.
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