Archive for August, 2018

Scared to change? Fear getting you down?

August 30th, 2018

Change and Fear

 

This week I met with a client to discuss a change in her team- adding an App into the routine. Change can be scary and yet, it is often needed.

When is it a good time to get over the fear of change, and when is it not a good idea?  Continue? Move on?

Let’s deal with fear first:

Fear can be good, as a motivator (ie:  the company will have to cut back if we don’t sell xamount of goods) but it can also stop change.  When fear is a healthy motivation to get things done asap, that’s great.  When fear stops you because you feel it threatens you (eg: “There will be violence”), it’s not good – and maybe not at all true.  You can look back to last week’s blog on assumptions, here: http://www.jehle-coachingexpat.com/2018/08/23/assumptions-true-maybe-true-or-false/

The point is, what is the fear doing to you?  If it’s holding you back, there is a problem; if it’s spurring you on, then great. Coaches and counselors can help you with your emotions.  But now let’s move on to the choice: to change or not to change.

Here are some suggestions to consider when you continue in the path you are going:

  • Your idea is great, your strategy is practically perfect, if you say so yourself (or you can perfect it), you are doing theright things with the right motives
  • You – and your team – have the right competencies(or are willing to learn them, fast)
  • You are focusing on the most important things, the ONE BIG thing really

(and remember that 80/20 principle, -spend time on the people and activities that “help” the most)

  • You have a decision-making process already in place
  • And – allYour systems (financial, logistical, discipleship, etc) are workable and they allow you to focus on your one BIG thing

A good model for making a change will help

WHEN TO GO and TRY SOMETHING ELSE, either in or outside of the present business/job

  • Change is generally a good thing: it helps you (and the business) to grow and become more creative – people learn new skills and strategies
  • There is opportunity for growth (financial and personal)
  • You can become a disrupter and challenge the status quo
  • You have been misunderstanding the business/personal signs to keep on with the same old (here’s a most awesome TEDtalk on this: http://www.ted.com/talks/kathryn_schulz_on_being_wrong#
  • Your pros now outweigh(even if they don’t outnumber) your cons to stay the same
  • The environment (culture, technology, economy, customer needs/demands) has changed and you must readjust
  • This one is BIG:

you can’t answer important questions, like, “Why are you doing this?  Why is x, y, or z happening?  How did you/we miss that?”

  • Your short cuts are cutting you and the business short and you are not doing “the job” right anymore
  • You have tried everything you can think of and it’s still not working the way it is now
  • KEY: The only things keeping you from changing or quitting is your prideand yourfear
  • You have continued financial and/or other major lossesand you do not see not much change for the future
  • And finally, your own priorities have changed and you have a different view of your business idea and your work

I hope this helps you with your change decision- to do or not to do.  Next timew, we will look at the change process, itself.

Have a very creative and innovative rest of your week,

Patricia Jehle

patricia@jehle-coaching.com          www.jehle-coaching.com

Assumptions, true, maybe true, or false?

August 23rd, 2018

We have assumptions about reality

What are you assuming and is it true???

Late in June I wrote a blog on how we believe things that are not true… http://www.jehle-coachingexpat.com/2018/06/26/what-story-are-you-telling/#comment-17912those beliefs are assumptions.

Assumptions that are not true hold us backand often crippleus.  So, what assumptions might these be and how do we change them?  Some of the assumptions may be true (possible), some are probably false (either about yourself or about life, in general).

Here are some assumptions- do you believe any?

Possibly true                                       False (about self)                   False (about life)

Someone else is better at x               I’m stupid                                I must not fail

It will be difficult                                 I can’t handle it                       It’s not possible

I may cry                                              I can’t lead (or x)                     People in power x

 

Let’s look at these assumptions one at a time and see how they are true – or not.

First, someone is better at x.

That’s most likely true, as there is almost always someone better (or worse) than we are at doing something.  So, then the question would be, “So, What?  What’s important about this and how does it affect the issue at hand?” Is this truth worth you stopping?  Most likely, not.  Instead find the reason you are doing x and evaluate its outcome; then find a way through it and keep going.  This little thought process of questioning can work for the other two possibly true assumptions, too.

But how can you tellif it’s true (that’s often obvious, with physical proof, like this: at the moment there is a drought in most of Switzerland.  And how mightit be a possibly true fact?  Then the answer could be yes or no and often has “negative” connotations for you—something that may stop you from making a correct decision.

What about the false-self-truths?

“I am stupid”

How do I know for sure is not true?  Well, the easy answer is, I can’t know for sure.  But I personally choose to believe that we allare 1) good, well-made humans 2) capable of growth and learning and 3) are trying our best.  I choose to think and believe positively about my fellow human beings.  And, usually my assumptions about you are true. Thus, you are not stupid, with help and learning you can handle it and maybe you can learn to lead (it’s a skill, not a character trait).  Coaching helps a lot with these kinds of false assumptions.

What about false-life-assumptions?

According to Nancy Kline in her book, “Time to Think”, she calls these bedrock assumptions- the assumptions you choose to base your life on.  And they may be very false.  Let’s looks at these:

I must not fail-  this is false!  The truth: we learn best from failing.

It’s not possible– this can be a bedrock assumption if you say this a lot (or all) of the time.  If you do, be careful!  If you say it once in a blue moon, then it may be true.  But, as most problems have solutions, these assumptions are most likely false.  You just have to find a way.

People in power think best– false!  Who says so? How can it be proven?  Is this a way of your (or my) giving up responsibility for the issue?  Are there exceptions to this (of course there are!!!)

So, here are some questions for you to consider:

-What are you assuming that is stopping you from doing what you want?  If that assumption is possibly true, then ask:

-If you knew the oppositewould happen, what would that look like? (This is your answer, so it may not be these, but I’ll give it a try: someone else better at x-  so the opposite is: I am an expert at x; it will be difficult- the opposite is: it will be a piece of cake, done in a jiffy; I may cry- the opposite is: I may smile).  Say it aloud, that opposite.

-So then, if you knew you were an expert at x(it’s easily done, you might smile), how would you feel when they asked you to do x?

And what more would you do?

Here are the steps, again:

  • Figure out what kind of assumption it is
  • Look for false assumptions, especially ones that affect your belief system
  • Find the opposite (this is your true answer, and it can be varied, depending on you alone) to the false assumption
  • Ask the what ifquestion: If you knew + your opposite + situation- eg:
    • “you are extremely capable at leading”, how would you feel about leading the project?
  • Ask the question twice or three times to let the answers sink in and to look for further answers

Here are some good questions to ask at the “if you knew” step:

  • If you knew that you colleague respects you, what would you do?
  • If you knew that people from your background think brilliantly, what would you do?
  • If you knew that you can come up with ideas better than the boss, what would you do?
  • If you knew that s/he isn’t judging you, what would you do?
  • And: What would you say, next?  What else would you do?

So, before you get all upset about a situation, thinkabout you assumptions- if they are true, or not.  Then after that, take a positive truthand move from there:  truth-belief-act-feel.  But for now, just work on your assumptions.

Have a great time thinking well.

 

Patricia Jehle

patricia@jehle-coaching.com

www.jehle-coaching.com

Are you just getting back in the saddle again?

August 14th, 2018

Time to get away – and reflect

I have just had a long holiday.  It’s been great, but at least for me, returning to the job can sometimes be difficult. Returning to work can be emotionally and even physically difficult, especially if you have really had a mental break from your every-day schedule, as I have had.  It can feel like you are a deep-sea diver coming to the surface again, facing a foreign world from where you have recently been.  Resurfacing and getting back in the saddle, to mix some metaphors, are tough.

This was the case for me- I was far away, mentally, emotionally and physically from all my work.  Then I came back to a few important deadlines, to a lot of emails, and a messy desk.  I had to resurface fast.  I got back in the saddle and started moving forward.  Here are some things I tried to do to make the re-adjustment smooth; maybe you can do them too!

 

Toss your ideas to the wind and see what happens!

Start on a Wednesday, or even Thursday- or do a “fun” thing first

Make your first work-week lighter by only working a few days, or perhaps schedule something “fun” first, such as a training day, or a team building day where you have no choice but to ignore your email list. This time I only focused on the deadlines.

Alternatively, check the email list immediately when you return (at home – and be brutalwith your triage, no replies, just deletes – reply in the office).  My entrepreneurial niece triaged 1,300 emails after a three-week vacation ended yesterday.  Hats off to her!

Start slowly, with loweredexpectations

Do not plan a really long first day or two, but slowly set and get into your list of “to-dos”; don’t expect to get finished with your list, but try to focus on one or twokey goals for the first few days.  Remember to reacquaint yourself with the team, the space, and the food, too. Perhaps you have a small souvenir you want to put on your desk to remind you of the great time you have just had. Mine is a ceramic teacup ornament a friend gave me at TeenStreet.

Revisit your vacation memories

Speaking of souvenirs, maybe you want to review your photos, or try and make that green curry you learned to make in Thai cooking class.  As a family, we always bring back food and enjoy them later on.  We make a meal to re-live our holiday experience in our own home and will anchor it in our memories.  Alternatively, listen to the music you listened to while on holiday, as you work, if allowed, or as you cook and clean up and do your holiday laundry.

 

Explore to a new place.

Have -or make- future plans, have something to look forward to, holiday plans or otherwise

Not only are we attending a couple of fun activities at the end of the month, but we also are planning a fall trip somewhere.  So, although we will be working, we have very positive activities to look forward to.  This helps when work gets tough, which of course happens regularly:  we can look ahead to the next enjoyable activities that break the work stress.  These plans help make the days pass with positive thoughts.

May your holiday resurfacing be successful and the next holidays be planned soon!

Patricia Jehle             www.jehle-coaching.compatricia@jehle-coaching.com

Work on your plan and find success

August 7th, 2018

Do you have a plan?

A plan for your business is half the battle of getting somewhere.  First, though you need to know your main WHY, and then, as you plan you need to set systems into place so that you can better focus on the important things.  I wrote the following for someone who is just starting to lead a company, here is a brief outline of the kinds of activities that should flow from your plan.

You need auto have a plan to succeed

Setting up a plan for projects and goals- breaking it down

Purpose    Objectives  Goals(SMART)     Steps         Actions

Purpose:  the why you are even doing this, usually a long-term answer (2-5 year plan)

Objectives (could be called BIG projects, or collaboration of smaller projects):  the whats that get you to the why(s) – usually a yearly plan that is logical in order and has a timeline

The Goals (could be called smaller projects)are the in-between whats and they are Specific, Measurable, Agreed upon (by the team), Realistic (can be done), and time-defined

Steps:  the specific ways to reach your goal, often made of several activities (or actions)

Actions: the concrete activities that make up a step and are (always) goal oriented- each action has a description (with who is doing it and/or who is in charge) and a predecessor action and a successor action, with reasonable date of accomplishment, resources needed, constraints and assumptions- deadlines should be early enough for a final reviewal, as learning takes place with reflection

Thus, youryearly planshould have two parts:

  1. On-going activities and
  2. Yearly project/objectives that change:

So, your Business Timelinemaylook like this:

2-5 Year Plan: Purpose and Objectives

On-going (annual, or other)     PLUS   One-time projects

Yearly Plan: (Purpose) Objectives and Goals- MAKE a TIMELINE

On-going (annual)                                One-time projects

Semester: Objectives, Goals and Steps (prioritized)

On-going                                             One-time projects

(Focus on activities)                           Focus on Goals and Steps (and milestones)

Take time to reflect, refocus, redirect and move on your goals

Quarterly:  Goals, Steps and Activities

On-going                                             One-time projects

(Focus on activities)                           Focus on Steps and Activities (and milestones)

Weekly (and daily): Activities! (prioritized)

Use the Eisenhower Matrix for decision-making, both at macro and micro levels (google it) & Use some way of making sure your goals are smart- here’s a good website: https://www.smartsheet.com/how-write-smart-project-objective

Have a great week working on your plan- remember, this can be adapted to other kinds of activities, too!

Patricia Jehle     www.jehle-coaching.com   patricia@jehle-coaching.com