During times of stress or great challenge, it's far too easy to look outward rather than inward.
Looking outward is quick and familiar yet won't get us where we want to go, especially if we seek greatness in people and experiences. It's easy to ask:
- Why did he do or say that?
- Why didn't she do this right?
- They just can't get it; I have to do everything!
The real question is internal and takes longer; this is why we settle for the above questions which lead to damaging assumptions. Instead of looking outward at what someone is or isn't doing, look inside.
- What will I do today to make it better than yesterday?
- What small shifts in my communication, body language, creativity will create greater, more effective outcomes?
- How can I reward others for doing the same?
If you want to be surrounded by great people and experiences, begin within you. Begin and end each day with solid affirmations of what you are doing right, what great experiences you've created or plan to create.
Think you already do this at some level?
Studies and my personal client experience show that during stressful times we begin most days with dread of what's ahead
end our days with thoughts of what went wrong, what we didn't accomplish, and irritation with at least one other person.
(Leadership Rule of Thumb: If you're irritated with three or more people it's likely not them that is at fault, it's more indicative of what's going on inside of you, perhaps an irritation or impatience with 'you'.)
If your focus is on what others around you are doing wrong, that's what you'll create in yourself and others. If your focus is on continually lifting yourself up first, elevating your thoughts and actions, others will follow.
First acknowledge yourself - all that you are doing to make things better tomorrow than yesterday. If you're not taking this responsibility, no one else will. At some point you must realize that others are not responsible, you are.
Then, acknowledge those around you. Begin with noticing small things people do that have a positive effecton you or on the circumstances. Watch people's reactions when they are actually seen and acknowledged for their efforts. Their good deeds will immediately multiply and their uplifted spirit will be contagious to those around them.
It's actually quite fun once you pull your head out of the sand of thinking everyone around you is to blame for your circumstances and take responsibility for creating the greatness you want in your life.
Observe your behavior to see if you are in the 'blame-others' mode or 'take responsibility'. If you see blaming others, rise above it, and then to generate something better to take its place. You'll be generating your own greatness before you know it.
Go out there and feel amazing this week. Take responsibility back for what you want to create and reward others for their contribution to your success!