Focus on What You WANT vs What You Don't Want

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Focus on what you want, not what you don’t want.

I ran into an old friend the other day. I was thrilled to see her and was very excited to catch up. When I asked her what was happening in her life, she began sharing with a declaration of busyness (exclaimed by a sigh) and followed with a brief one or two-sentence description about what she had done which was accompanied with a half-smile.

The next segment of the conversation quickly took a deep dive into what she had wanted to do only to be followed by all or the reasons why she hadn’t been able to do them. This turned into focusing on what she didn’t want within her role as a leader at work and as a mom at home. The negative blaming energy was palpable!

Okay you get the picture…by this point as the listener; I was exhausted and searching for the exit. However I paused and asked her, “What do you want your role as a leader to be and how would you like to show up for your kids?”

These two questions shifted the whole tone of the conversation. She sat silent for a few minutes and for those of you who know me, you know I’m completely comfortable with holding the sacred space of silence for people to process and discover their thoughts.

Eventually, she replied, “I’ve never taken time to truly think about what I want either of these areas of my life to be. I’ve always assumed they needed to be what they’ve been in the past.”

This was a huge ah-ha moment for her! She asked me if I could hang out with her for a while. We spent the next few hours digging in and I got to see her full joyous beautiful smile as she began visualizing what could be possible for her as a leader and a mom!

She left with two small action steps to start her journey to living her life based on what’s important to her by focusing on what she wants not what she doesn’t want.

As I drove home I reflected back to a time in my life where I too could only focus on what I didn’t want. I was overwhelmed and wasn’t able to step in to my power of choice and focus my thoughts on what I wanted in my life.

It wasn’t until I made the decision to stop living by default and start living based on what was important to me that was I able to reignite my mojo and own my power of choice to create the life I most desired. I’m incredibly grateful for the skills I learned during that process.

I’m curious as you reflect on your role, as a leader at work or a home, are you operating on autopilot? When was the last time you took time to determine what you want your roles to be in your life?

Here’s a little experiment for you if you want, the next time you hear yourself saying, I don’t want…pause and ask, “Okay, what do I want?” Then start focusing from that perspective. Let me know what changes and what you learn from this experiment.

If you would like to talk more about shifting your roles in your life to be more aligned with what’s important to you, click here to setup a discovery call with me today.