Over a phone coffee with my girlfriend, second best to a face-to-face, we were talking about her mom’s recent visit, acknowledging how so many of our habits are exhibited by our mothers.
A visit is kind of like someone holding up a mirror so you can see what you are like, the good, the bad and the ugly.
The discussion wasn’t a critical one.
But it did leave me thinking about what I needed to be doing differently. Making conscious choices to stop doing certain things, or maybe do more of others. At work and in life.
it made me think about my need to choose to respond differently when my kids push my buttons vs doing what I always do, which isn’t working very well.
Getting frustrated and raising my voice is my Autopilot and habitual response. It’s my go-to, but ironically it’s totally unproductive. It doesn’t typically change their behaviours, but more importantly, it’s not how I want to act. It’s not who I want to be. I would never respond this way to friends, clients or even strangers.
Proof that I choose my responses and so do you.
It’s up to us to change our bad habits and to stop repeating the limiting responses that aren’t helping us to get to where we want to go.
Fast forward 1 year. What’s your life going to feel like if nothing changes? What’s the impact if everything stays the same? On your Health? Career? Finances? Relationships? etc…
2 TIPS TO BREAKING OUR BAD HABITS
#1 OWN IT:
This may sound harsh, but we are choosing to stay stuck in our bad habits. We are choosing how we respond to the details around us.
Trust that your boss, colleague, partner, child, etc….isn’t going to change first. We have to.
Nothing will change until we OWN the fact that it’s our choice how we respond.
Here’s a work related example: A client whose boss was a jerk and would lose his cool really quickly. Her Autopilot response was to get defensive and respond, but that wasn’t productive nor did it add value to her or the situation. She wanted to get promoted and needed to focus on responding in a way that demonstrated her ability to manage herself and leadership qualities. So the next time he flew off the handle she ‘owned’ her Response, and chose to take a deep breath, followed by “I hear what you are saying. I’m am going to have to get back to you.”
He didn’t change. She chose to.
#2 A VISUAL CUE:
Sliding into Autopilot is easy. I do it too, but the trick is realizing it and getting out of it.
Do you ever ‘know’ you don’t want to be acting or feeling a certain way, but have no idea how to do it differently?
This is why I love TOOLS. A physical reminder to help you to practice and create your new responses and habits.
Here are a few examples of clients’ TOOLS, Visual Cues…to encourage you to find one that works for you and is relevant to your scenario.
A NUMBER: A client wanted to keep her stress at a 2 out of 10 for her own health. She literally saved a #2 as her screen savers, a constant reminder to check herself when she feels like she’s letting herself get worked up. The 2 is the reminder that getting swept up in the moment is at the expense of her health.
A COLOUR: Another client identified the colour blue to signify how she wanted to act in an upcoming meeting. Choosing a colour and wearing/bringing it to the meeting (a shirt, bracelet, sweater, note book, etc…) was a reminder to keep her head up and share her thoughts, vs letting her mind default to her autopilot responses and holding back.
AN OBJECT: Another client used her wedding ring as a reminder of why she was taking a step out of her comfort zone, vs her Autopilot of avoiding it.
A SPECIAL OPPORTUNITY: Over the summer I will be working on writing my upcoming Book! If you are interested in being part of a small team of women who would be willing to receive the step-by-step Tools, to use and implement in your life, in return for providing me with your specific, honest and constructive feedback…please let me know!
If this is of interest email me at firstname.lastname@example.org