If each day is a “gift”, I’d like to know where to return Mondays.
– ( Put your name here)
On Monday morning, you can’t hide it from yourself anymore.
You are either happy to go to work or saying, ‘life sucks!’
And what is it you end up doing : look forward to the week-end.
The ratio is 5:2. After five days of doing what you do not want to do in a place you do not want to be, you get two days to recover for the next five days of the same, old routine. And if your personal life is in shambles, you spend those two days seeing to it that is not going to pieces. There is no recovery, just damage-control.
Am I painting too bleak a picture?
I don’t think so.
Here is the bleaker picture.
You do not even know how you are doing. Weighed down as you are by housing loans and other deep obligations, you cannot even bring yourself to ask , “Am I happy with my life?”. If someone else asks you, you wriggle out by saying, “Too busy working to notice!”
Life is normal – really?
You define your life as normal.
Normal is in accepting whatever is your lot at work because there are loans to be re-paid. Normal is in accepting that you are not a networker or influencer and will never rise fast. Normal is in accepting that you missed out on the prestigious MBA. Normal is in accepting that you cannot communicate well-enough. Normal is in accepting that your hands are tied due to circumstances beyond control. Normal is in accepting that work is a burden and can never be fun.
The bad boss. The demanding organization. The long-hours. The stressful targets. Everything is normal.
Normal is self-deception. You want to make the going easy for yourself. Making peace is what you tell yourself.
You have every right to engage in this self-deception if you believe that’s the only way to survive. Till the time you know there is another way.
And there is.
Normal is not something to aspire to, it is something to get away from.
– Jodie Foster
Warren Buffet says he tap-dances his way to work. Can you imagine that? Do you think that is normal?
The most successful people in any field insist on working with a coach. Do you think that is normal?
Why get coached when you are already successful? And yet, they do. Ever wondered why?
Coaching to make the normal yield new possibilities.
The first time I wore a reversible garment ( clothes that can be worn inside out), I marvelled at how the appearance and dimensions are still the same, but I am still getting so much more. Two clothes of different colours for the price & space of one!
In coaching, you use the same principle of a reversible garment. You explore every dimension and turn your life inside out. You take what is normal and take it apart to unpack what is truly unchangeable and what is positively change-friendly in your life. You create new space and new possibilities within the same dimensions. You expand choices by changing how you look at a situation. Coaching is innovation.
Take financial obligation, for instance. In a recent coaching session, I was helping my coachee uncover what stands between him and his long-term goal of starting his own business venture. My coachee had multiple action-steps that he was juggling with. He couldn’t carry forward any step simply because every step was blocked by the financial obligations he had to meet. The money he had to earn did not allow him to take the major risks involved in going after his venture.
Further coaching uncovered what was unchangeable and what could be changed. That he required a steady stream of money was unchangeable. What could be changed? Here goes : He could take the bull by its horns. He could focus on savvy financial planning and strategize to give himself an opportunity to ensure a steady stream of money a few years down the line. The coaching outcome focussed on tackling that one major obstacle that blocked every other progress.
Now, my coachee is not fixated on the business venture. The business venture is an indirect destination now. The first milestone is financial independence. He accepted that he has to ensure the money flow by all means. He resolved to maximise his income for a few years by giving it his all. He has hired a certified financial advisor to invest money with clear,targetted returns that he will be needing. With this process in place, it is a matter of time before he gets free to go after what he wants.
The beauty of coaching is that as a coach I reminded him that the financial discipline he is subjecting himself to is the exact same discipline he will require for his own business venture. In a very significant way, he is also working on his business venture – the financial acumen part of it. So what if in material terms, there is little tangible progress – for now. That time will come.
This is how you interrogate the normal. You prise it open and experiment with everything – thought, belief and action. You make things happen – on purpose.
This Monday, you can go back to normal. Or you can get away from normal.
What will you choose?
( Rahul coaches people who are committed to do the work involved in making a significant contribution. After all, he is doing just the same.In addition to being a coach who helps people succeed , Rahul is a trainer,facilitator and consultant in areas related to leadership development & organizational effectiveness. He believes in using whatever is happening and making it work towards the well-defined purpose. The emphasis is on aligning with fundamental truths & timeless principles. Rahul’s work is grounded in a continuing understanding of the works of Peter Drucker. He likes to keep things simple and is easy to work with. )