2020 The Year That Chaos Happened

Normally, I call this “The End of The Year Exercise.”  However, there was nothing normal about 2020 for any person on earth.  So here in December 2020, I am asking you to look at your personal life and your professional life very differently. 

If at all humanly possible, let yourself go to a place mentally where you feel free from all the constraints you have endured in 2020.  Free yourself from all commitments, worry, anxiety, disappointment, and frustration.  Know that no pandemic in the history of the earth has lasted forever and there will be an end to COVID-19.  I want you to focus on Y-O-U not the world and what is happening in it.

Our [yours and mine] goal in doing this exercise is to adjust our attitude.  Yes, all of us have been “uprooted” from our routine. We are turning a corner in 2021 even if the COVID-19 virus is still here and this is how we will do that.

  1. Look at the positive [no longer allow anything negative into your sphere of work or living] Application on this will come later.
  2. Be on the team [decide right now to do whatever it takes to move your life and business forward] Application on this will come later.
  3. Offer no opinions. [for some reason, every person thinks what they say matters – it doesn’t – just because you have a thought does not mean you need to express it.] Application to come a little later.
  4. Listen and offer no negative comments. [When we utter negativity, no one moves forward, we stall the entire process] Application coming shortly.
  5. Your circle of professional and personal people does not want to know your elevated experiences. [everyone has experience during this past year, and everyone has a story about how it has affected them, telling your story, again, does not move them forward] Application almost here.
  6. Get out of the way and let those in your personal and professional life get on with their jobs. [When we stop to ruminate over the past, no one can move forward, we act as a blockade.] Application coming soon.

Which one of these six listed items really irritates you? 

I hypothesize that the one which bugs you the most is the very one you need to work on the most.  It is not a nice thing to hear, but it is true.  I have people around me who point this out to me all the time.  This one item above is where you need to do the most growth.  It is extremely hard to turn that mirror around and look at yourself, that ugly part of yourself that most of us deny we truly are.  

View Yourself in A New Way

Here is a new way of viewing yourself.  Think of yourself at the base of a local hill or mountain you want to climb.  That hill or mountain is the item that bristles you.  As you begin to climb and gain ground you begin to feel better about your progress and who you can change, improve and be more aware of what and who you really are and want to be. You become stronger and more resilient with every foot you tackle. 

When you finally reach the summit, and stand tall and stretch and view the beauty of the landscape below you, you will do a 360° degree turn and there in the distance is to your surprise a higher peak waiting for you to conquer it.  This new summit is there to let you know, “Hey, over here, there is more room for you to grow, come on over and let’s get started!”

You and I have what are called “Growth Gaps” in our way of living and working.  These are normal, most people feel the gap before they know what it is in their life and what it represents.  So, don’t beat yourself up on this one.  Let’s look at each of the six items, listed and do what I call a “Growth Gap Application.” Ready, let’s rock and roll now.

 Growth Gap Application

  1. Look at the positive [no longer allow anything negative into your sphere of work or living]
  • The growth gap here is our whole attitude has been rewritten by the negativity of the situation with a global pandemic. Many of us assumed we would weather a season of illness and closure, but after several months, things go sour and south very quickly and eventually those in lockdown erupt in all sorts of unhealthy negative ways. 
  • The second growth gap here is our knowledge We put our faith and trust in government, health organizations, and other experts in the beginning and then the tide turned. We found ourselves questioning everyone because conflicting information bombarded us daily.  Couple this with the politization and weaponizing of information and you get a knowledge gap.
  • The third growth gap is one of timing. Too much information at the wrong time or being given all the time damages credibility of those purveying the information. When will be “open”, when will I be able to “work”, where is my “relief check” all disarm an individual who is on the verge of collapse? 

Growth happens when we begin to be Self-Awareof how the gaps are affecting our mood, our outlook, our daily habits, and our relationships. Here is something you might want to post on your mirror: 

“I must know myself in order to grow myself.”

What does this mean?  Know who you are. 

  1. A) “Who Am I?”
  2. B) “What Am I?”
  3. C) “Why Am I Here?”

If you feel like “you lack direction” there is a reason you feel this way.  You may find yourself in one of these three categories.

  1. I do not know what I want to do. This is a place where a person is stuck, not unlike a deer in the headlights of a car on the road. A person is on overload and hears so much they are unable or unwilling to make any decision, so they stay where they are.  What is needed is “Clarity and Focus.”

  2. I know what I should/want to do, and I simply do not do it. Here there may be something else at play with you. You know what you know, but you just are not “Challenged” enough or see the reasoning behind doing it. 
  3. I know what to do and I do it. This requires “BIG THINKING.” If this is, congratulations – nothing more need be said here.

Growth Gap Application

  1. Be on the team [decide right now to do whatever it takes to move your life and business forward]
  • If you are a member of a team in your professional life, what are you contributing to moving the business forward?
  • Are you there to just collect a paycheck?
  • Or are you invested in seeing everyone grow in knowledge, service to the customer and grow revenue for everyone?

People are quite different and have quite different character traits and foundations which were built long ago in childhood.  As we grow through life, our experiences shape us, our thinking, and our beliefs.  It is a matter of “buy-in” to the vision of the organization/business you are working with.

Growth Gap Application

  1. Offer no opinions. [for some reason, every person thinks what they say matters – it doesn’t – just because you have a thought does not mean you need to express it.] Just because you have a thought or idea does not mean you must express it. Ask yourself these questions: 
  • “Will my thought move the conversation forward or take the conversation off on an exit ramp?” If your answer is: “yes, voicing my opinion or thought will take us off on an exit ramp,” then stay quiet.
  • “Did anyone ask for my opinion or thoughts on the subject we are discussing?” If you answer is: “yes, then think carefully about what you will say.”  If the answer is no – again remain quiet.

    Growth Gap Application

  1. Listen and offer no negative comments. [When we utter negativity, no one moves forward, we stall the entire process] We have all been in conversations where there is the nay sayer and true to their behavioral characteristics, that individual will try to agitate and in some cases hijack the entire meeting in order to derail it. If you are this kind of person, what you need to know is this; you do no one any favors by being the nay sayer.  In fact, it is a selfish way of drawing attention to yourself in a negative way. 

If you are feeling tension and you feel the need to bring up a negative point, may I suggest you write it down and its context.  At the end of your meeting or conversation when the facilitator asks for comments, concerns, corrections, and next steps; this is when you speak up.  You may find that instead of interrupting, the objection may be overcome by listening and hearing all the conversation first.

 Growth Gap Application

  1. Your circle of professional and personal people does not want to know your elevated experiences. [everyone has experience during this past year, and everyone has a story about how it has affected them, telling your story, again, does not move them forward].  This is in line with the “intent” of your conversation.  Again, we need to know when to speak and when to hold our tongue.

Growth Gap Application

  1. Get out of the way and let those in your personal and professional life get on with their jobs. [When we stop to ruminate over the past, no one can move forward, we act as a blockade.]
  • This may seem counterintuitive, but it is not. Life is not all about you my friend. This is self-elevation and the need to feel important.
  • If you truly need to speak or intervene, then ask for permission and set up an appointment to do so.
  • One thing millions of people do to quell this urge is to “journal” their thoughts and feelings. You might try this.  Let me explain why this method of application is so effective.  Our brains will work literally all night to solve a question or to find the answer to a problem that we go to bed with.  This rumination creates deep creases in our brains and those irritations stay put for a long time.   When we write down these things and empty our brains so to speak, we create “white space”, and our brains can work on other vital things such as repairing our bodies during our sleep.

Okay, so there you have it. 

How is this information sitting with you here at the end of 2020?

What are you going to do moving forward in 2021?

Remember, when you wake up January 1, 2021, COVID will still be here, it will still be winter, and most likely your situation will remain the same unless you make a mental shift, to change your world.

 

 

I’d like to hear from you!

Janice Bastani Coaching offers customized solutions for you and your team to resource and equips you to be a “Great Leader.”  When you are ready, we are here to help, send an email to begin the process:  janice@janicebastanicoaching.com .  

Visit my website at:

www.janicebastanicoaching.com   or www.johnmaxwellgroup.com/janicebastani