Every day at my desk I stare at the same quote from the Course in Miracles. “Seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind about the world. What you see reflects your thinking. And your thinking but reflects your choice of what you want to see.”
How many of you have every had someone wake up on the wrong side of the bed and they are grumpy right from the get go? Have you spent energy trying to change their attitude to only finally throw up your hands and declare they are right, it will be an awful day? But inside you are thinking, “it wouldn’t be a bad day if you just changed your attitude.”
Well that is what the about quote is all about. It is saying that what we see is really a projection of what we seek to see. In other words, your reality becomes what you create. If you project fear, you get fear back. If you panic, you will get panic back. If you project confidence, you will get back confidence.
So if you want great change, change your thinking and you will change your view. Let me illustrate with a real life example.
Tom came to us because he was wallowing as a VP. He thought his boss doubted him and second guessed all of his decisions. Consequently Tom started to drop in to Bob’s office to share what decisions he would be making and why. Bob then would argue with Tom on the decisions and point out the flaws. Tom would then reverse his decision to align with Bob’s.
Now here is what is interesting to note: Tom saw Bob as doubting him and second guessing his decisions. Bob sent Tom to us because he said “Tom can’t make up his mind. He is constantly flipping like a pancake on his decisions when I debate them with him.”
So what did Tom do? Tom needed to reverse how he saw Bob and the role Bob filled. Tom was able to reverse the situation and get back on track with Outcome Thinking. I want to share two of the steps he did as they are steps you too can do to reverse a negative situation.
1. Stop giving up the power. For Tom this meant to stop assigning Bob all the authority by believing that Bob was trying to second guess him. For Tom this meant to stop trying to run every decision by Bob.
2. Stop looking for validation. In this situation Tom was looking for validation from Bob for the decision Tom was about to make. When you look for validation from others what you are really doing is looking for approval that you made the right decision. Essentially this means the other person has to either take accountability for your decision (not fun) or they have to at least put enough thinking power in to review all the steps of the decision. At this point, it just becomes easier as a leader to force your own decision on the other person, which is what was happening to Tom.
3. Own the past to own the future. We showed Tom how to use Outcome Thinking to have an intelligent discussion with Bob on the changes he was making so that Bob wouldn’t try to push him back in to running every decision by him.
The result? Tom went from being on “watch” to being “watched” for success. He completely reversed the situation by reversing his thinking.
Take Action: Pick a situation that you don’t have a great perspective on or that is a trouble spot for you. Now look at how you can use the above story and change the way you look at it.