Are you on automatic pilot in your life? Just this morning I was in a conversation with a good friend of mine who lives in New Mexico. We were discussing our families and personal relationships. As we talked and shared some of the frustrations we experience at home and at work we both came to the realization that a good deal of what we were complaining about had to do with the times when he or I went on our old, automatic, pre-set patterns of thinking and reacting. In other words, we let our personalities and limited ways of thinking take over. At those times we both recognized that we sub-optimize and we move into judgment, blame and being critical of others and even of ourselves.
As a psychotherapist, consultant, executive coach and author, I have seen these patterns of unconscious, automatic ways of thinking and acting damage marriages, families, work groups and organizations, to say nothing about personal leadership effectiveness! So, briefly, consider the following. Whenever you are feeling like blaming self or others, becoming critical, getting defensive or otherwise feeling “shitty” – step back and engage in an “act of power.” Ask, “Does this way of feeling, thinking and reacting truly serve me and create more joy, love and happiness in my life?” If the answer is no, then engage in another act of power, challenge the old thought-form and “choose” one or more compassionate and helpful thoughts. Then, using that new or more “generous” way of interpreting events and people, take action on that compassionate and enabling set of thoughts. The results will be far superior to going down the same old rat-hole that the old thought forms and automatic ways of reacting will lead you to do.
Break the automatic, defensive and unconscious ways of thinking and acting. Are you ready to claim more personal power and efficacy?