As women we sometimes feel captive to our emotions. You know those times when you fly off the handle and then wonder – what the hell just happened?
And then you do a quick stocktake on what’s going around you as you try to juggle everything and everyone as well as manage your own career and wellbeing. That’s when we sink into ourselves and beat ourselves up as we should have seen it coming right? After all the signs were all there, we just didn’t take the time or have the energy to sit in them, feel them and recalibrate.
Did you know that there are three key decisions we continuously make that impact the action we take and how effective (or not effective!) that action is?
The first of these is what we focus on. There are so many things happening around us that we need to choose those that we focus on. Do you notice the delay in traffic or are you busy practicing your pitch for the big meeting coming up today? Did you notice the stain on the new carpet or are you focussed on getting dinner ready? When the kids come in from school do send them off to get their homework done or do you ask them to walk the dog before it gets dark?
The second of these is the meaning we attach to that which we focus on. When you’re delayed in traffic is it because you can NEVER get out of the house in time because no matter how hard you try the kids just won’t get out of bed and your partner always seems to have an early meeting or is it just one of those things? When you’re practicing your pitch for the day is it because keeping it front of mind means you’ll be better prepared and things generally go your way when you are prepared? Or is it because you are terrible at pitching and no matter how hard you try and one more practice round can’t hurt can it? When you see the stain on the new carpet are you thinking about how you can get it out or is it typical that whenever you get something new someone always spoils it. You get the drift, right?
The third of these is the emotion we attach to the meaning. Are you frustrated that you are stuck in traffic or grateful for the extra time to go over your pitch? When you see the stain in your carpet are you pleased you bought the strain resistant one or feel let down that no one takes the same amount of care you do? Is making dinner the ultimate act of love as you nourish your family or is it just another thing on your long to do list that exhausts you?
Can you see how the exact same circumstance can have very different results? The good news is that now you know the formula you can avoid those outbursts (well, most of the time!) You see you get to choose. You can choose what you focus on, you can choose the meanings you attach, and you can choose the state/mood you want to be in. It’s not always easy but it is possible. So next time you have one of those” what the hell” rants take the opportunity to look at through the lens of focus, meaning and emotion.
For more tips on how to stop, reassess and then actively choose your response, download my free guide on how to Reduce Stress & Achieve Peace of Mind. It contains 5 techniques you can use anywhere anytime in 5 minutes or less.
Give it a try and let me know if it worked for you. You can drop me an email.