UpsetsUpsets! We all have them, discover how to use them and move through them with velocity. Many thanks to Darla Atwood-Donovan (WLC 5/99) for organizing and clearly articulating our coaching tip from Rayona.
One of the most powerful distinctions of IWL’s programs is separating facts from interpretations. As a reminder, remember, all of IWL’s program content is an interpretation. Please engage with this coaching tip in a way that empowers what you are committed to.
In the course of our day-to-day work we all occasionally experience upsets. Rather than let an upset dictate our mood and effectiveness, it is possible to rapidly move through the upset and continue to be powerful and effective. Here’s how:
Identify some situation about which you are upset. Answer the following questions to dismantle the upset.
- What were you committed to achieving in the first place that was interrupted?
- What happened that interrupted your commitment (exactly who said what to whom)?
- Check in with yourself by asking, ‘Do I have thwarted intentions, unfulfilled expectations or undelivered communications?’
- List them in order of severity.
- Identify your feelings, especially your regrets, resentments and hurt feelings:
- Do you have any regrets about what you did or didn’t do?
- Do you have any resentments about what someone else did or didn’t do?
- Do you have any hurt feelings about not feeling recognized or appreciated for what you are/have been doing
- Check in with yourself by asking, ‘Is the upset now disappeared?’ If your answer is No, To whom do you need to communicate? What’s the next conversation to create relationship with him/her? What is the next conversation for action to advance your original commitment (request, offer, proposal, invitation or promise)? By when will you have the conversation?
Consider the possibility that all upsets are due to the collapse between ‘reality as fact’ and ‘reality as interpretation.’ You are the one who interprets what happened and what it meant. See if you can invent an interpretation that empowers what you are committed to.
For instance, imagine you forget to return a very important phone call because you didn’t check your day timer. Consider these interpretations:
A default interpretation might be, ‘I’m so stupid……I’ll never get my life organized!’ This interpretation doesn’t provide an opening for anything productive to arise.
An invented interpretation might be, ‘This is simply another reminder that I need to take time for myself to relax and put things in order. Putting things in order will definitely contribute to being a more effective leader. Who can I recruit to give me coaching in this area?’ This interpretation acknowledges the ‘mistake’ without being degrading. It also opens the way to action.
Default interpretations are no more ‘true’ than invented ones. They are simply default interpretations. Invented interpretations are as ‘valid’ (and generally more powerful) then default ones. Try it out and let us know what happens!