We are currently emerging from COVID enforced cocoons. Uncertainty is very much the headline.
But not all cultures see uncertainty as a negative. Buddhism, for example, sees it as a given. Whatever lens we see the world though however, there is a question we are all facing:
‘How do we set outcomes for ourselves, our businesses, our public sector roles if we are living amongst so much uncertainty?’
Here are 6 steps I hope will ground the structure. We can:
1. Become aware of being caught up in the overall ‘noise’ of living…Let’s start by getting some clarity, tuning out the amount we have to process. Try focussing on one thing and one thing only, something very specific- the breath, the wall, the dog, a pencil on the desk- anything that takes our minds away from everything. Pay attention to our bodies and spend a minute relaxing muscles, untightening jaws, just slowing the world dowwwwwnnnn.
2. Ask what it is we truly, truly want…We are now in a position to think about life as it is rather than just react to how we think it should be, so we can make a list of those outcomes we truly want. Once done, divide them into what we should do, what we would do and what we can do. We will find that the can dos are the ones we want to commit to.
3. Make a list of what resistance there is to achieving these outcomes…Now we know the can’s, we can make a list of what is standing in the way: confidence, need for money, need for contacts, needs arising from other priorities…. whatever occurs to us.
Write down each one, then look at each in turn. Ask the question ‘If I know how to move forward, what action can I take?’ and allow space in our heads for the answer to come. Other questions could be ‘Whose advice is most helpful here? ‘Whose learning can I use best?’
4. Now look at the language of each outcome very, very carefully…Go back through the outcomes and check what you have written. Each should be exactly what you want. In a world where information keeps growing, where we want shortcuts and emoji’s to save time, this can feel counterintuitive. But for outcomes to work they need to have flesh on them. Every word counts for sure but skipping words for the sake of brevity will not support our progress. And if it’s hard to think about each outcome, take COURAGE. We can do this! Remember we are LIONS.
5. Now think about the evidence that will prove each achievement. Underneath the outcomes write down this evidence. Keep evidence very specific, and even more specific…don’t stop until you can see the freckles on it…yes that specific (Steady Neil…sorry, getting a little preachy here!!!) … Errmmm…I may have actually written all that’s needed in the subheading Lol (sorry, that abbreviation was just to be provocative!) The more we practice precision, the easier it is to arrive at the evidence we need. And it’s ok to adjust as we go along. If we keep asking the question ‘What could be clearer?’ we will get the precision needed. Ask it as many times as necessary.
6. Now give our planned outcomes/evidence to a person whose impactful feedback we value …Someone who is reflective, who has high levels of challenge but also has our best interests at heart, someone who will recognise our needs.
When this is done, we can take a moment to congratulate ourselves for having prepared outcomes in such a thoughtful and challenging way. When we get the feedback, we can be KIND to ourselves, be COURAGEOUS, continue our LION lives.
May we be happy
May we be healthy
May we be free from worry.