If You Can't You Should, If You Should You Must, If You Must, You Can!
by Glenn Dietzel
One of the most beneficial exercises I've learned to establish is to reflect on the day's activities. This reflection includes: What worked well? What could I have done better? What good decisions did I make? How did I make them? Were they aligned with my philosophy? What did I do to accomplish my important goals and *dreams*?
Have you ever left a meeting feeling uncomfortable about the expectations of you? Have you left a meeting with unresolved problems that need to be "fixed?" Have you been involved in a meeting with a colleague where you left feeling like, "We need to talk!" Reflecting on these situations can make us feel uncomfortable. Today I would like to share with you my action plan in handling a meeting with a person with whom I feel uncomfortable.
Spend a few moments at night and reflect on the problem. Write it down. Take action. Do not just think about it! Thinking is good. However, thinking when you should be taking action is wrong. Recount what happened and what was said and/or the body language that was used. Do not dwell on this. Think about the situation. Talk to a trusted friend/mentor/spouse if you have to.
After this reflective stage, plan your action by taking pen in hand and writing out what you are going to do. Chart your course by writing it out! Begin with how you want this situation to be resolved! Perhaps you said something that could have been said differently. Perhaps there is a personality clash. Perhaps you are totally right and the other person has the problem. However, if this is the case, you now have a problem because it is bothering you.
The key to charting your course of action is to visualize yourself taking charge. This is particularly important if you feel somewhat intimidated by the other person. Visualize--see yourself talking to that person confidently and demonstrating all the key attributes of good listening and facilitative body language.
It is important to play this out in your mind--enact this meeting from start to finish. Thinking ahead of time about what you want to say and then visualizing your success is good! As stated above, thinking about what you should do, but not taking the necessary action is a mistake. "If You Can't You Should, If You Should You Must, If You Must, You Can!"
Begin with the end in mind. Chart your course. Visualize your meeting. Appreciate the fact that you actively took charge! And do this before you go to bed. Let your subconscious mind then role-play your intended actions. This will allow you to sleep peacefully at night! Rehearse again in the morning when you wake up.
Not only will the other person probably appreciate this--chances are that person will, and if the person doesn't, it's not your problem!--you will feel more confident! I have noted that when I take this kind of action, quite often I find out that the main problem was a lack of communication.
Make a note of your meeting and go away from it feeling like you've acted on your environment! This is very empowering! It's a much better feeling to think you've taken the action, then be passive and feel like you are a ship being tossed to-and-fro.
When having to confront a person with whom you are uncomfortable, picture the total concentration of a NBA basketball player who is oblivious to the fans around him as he shoots the winning foul-shot before a packed audience of screaming fans. Just make sure you picture a player with a high foul-shooting percentage. Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen say this, "Don't worry about people's reaction. Worry about your behaviour."
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