• Stephen Feeney

Waiting until breaking point



After spending many years practising doing things the "more challenging way," I figured out you didn't have to bottom out before asking for help. Most people don't access how they may think, behave or what they do on a day in, day out basis.

Then bang something happenings, and the whole world comes down. Or in other scenarios, it can be a small problem to begin with, that you don't care much for and then over time this problem grows and grows and grows until the thing that was small is now all-consuming.

I've worn both of these t-shirts on numerous occasions, now less so as I'm better at managing the thing between my ears.

Having worked a lot in schools over the last year, the trend tends to be a reactive situation. Let's sort it out when we have the problem. To be honest, this isn't the healthiest approach. It's like trying to get car insurance after you smashed the car up. The only option is to take it to the garage for some major work. By which stage it's in pretty bad shape and is going to be out of action for a while.

I see this happening in schools and universities, to be honest, it happens all over the place. The more you can keep grounded in the harder times, the less it'll move you in the wrong direction. Unfortunately, that's not what happens; most people go very close to the edge until asking for help or sitting down to access what the heck is happening and what can we do to neutralise it and then steadily condition them to deal with it and overcome it.

What I've seen is that it's much easier to deal with a small problem early on rather than a major problem which has been heavily embedded.

Equipping the person to be aware when the red light flicks on is the first skill.

Teaching them what way to act on "the flashing red light" is the next skill.

Then how to switch it off.

We are heavily lead by our emotions, learning to manage these things is an attribute. It means you don't spend as much time on the problem. You will be able to deal with it or solve it quickly and then move on.

Another trick is identifying the elements or process you used to solve it. It means you can repeat the thinking for future problems.

So unfortunately as humans, we are not hugely proactive in managing ourselves very well. Doing the following things is good.

1. Talk about the issue early on (rant as much as you need in ONE hit)

2. See how it makes you feel (identify the emotion)

3. Will that way of thinking, help, keep you in the same place, or drag you further into the problem?

4. What way do you need to think/feel to tackle the problem?

5. Lay that on lightly along with a simple solution you can implement and see how you get on with it.

Things aren't fixed in a flash. It takes time to condition behaviour and habits, also making the awesome version autonomous so that you don't have to think about it.

What autopilot do you want to have?

The car crash?

Or

The autopilot that blows the problems out of the way and you upgrade the way you think whilst doing it?

#behaviour #problemsolving

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Performance Youth Mentoring London
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