Have you ever been the driver or a passenger in a vehicle and unexpectedly found yourself lost, off-track from your intended destination? Understandably, you can become confused in the stream of vehicles. You can find yourself at a wrong exit or perhaps caught off-guard, suddenly realizing you aren’t headed in the right direction. It’s only human to make a wrong turn as a result of congestion, poorly marked lanes, or simply not paying close enough attention to the road. You can make a wrong turn.
In traffic, if you make a wrong turn, you have choices. You can proceed in the same incorrect direction, or you can pull over and ask for directions. In other words, you can continue going an erroneous way and thereby make matters worse, or you can seek help in turning your vehicle in the proper direction.
Have you had the experience of making a wrong turn in a relationship? It may be that you said something damaging to another person or acted in a careless manner. Did you lose your temper? It dawns on you that you are off course. When that happens, you can find yourself feeling lost, unable to skillfully and quickly course correct. So, what do you do if you’ve made a wrong turn in a relationship? You can ask for forgiveness and make a concerted effort to behave differently as you move forward. You can’t undo what’s been said or done as it’s in the past, but you can improve your present circumstances and focus on making the future better.
If you’ve found yourself on the receiving end of bad behavior, you have options. You can overlook or deny it. You can make a wrong turn in how you react or seek revenge. You can fight fire with fire, which usually results in more fire. You can wisely pause and reflect. You can set a boundary using precise, thoughtful words. You can walk away. You get to decide what will get you and possibly the relationship back on the right track.
Have you ever had the experience of being asked to do something only to soon realize the scope was much larger than originally described? This can happen in the workplace when more is being asked of you in a shorter amount of time than was originally discussed. It can also happen in your personal life. An example might be when a friend asks for a simple favor that grows exponentially into much more than originally indicated.
You may have good-naturedly agreed to something personally and professionally but didn’t ask enough about the details. You may have even assumed that the request meant a certain thing, but the person making the request had a different idea. Assumptions can create misunderstandings. Sometimes people simply pile on to the original request in hopes that you won’t mind or won’t notice. Other times, people may intentionally mislead you. The other person’s agenda isn’t always clear. Scope creep happens in a variety of ways for many different reasons.
The best way to prevent this from happening to you is to be sure you ask good questions even if the answer seems obvious. Don’t be concerned about looking foolish for asking for clarification and feedback on what you’re understanding.
If you find yourself in the midst of scope creep, it’s beneficial to have conversations with the people involved. Let them know your understanding of the original request and how it looks different now. Be clear about your boundaries and needs. It’s important to be clear with yourself before you have conversations with others. If it’s a difficult person to approach, practice verbally with a friend or coach. You may even want to record the conversation so you can hear how you are conveying your message. It takes courage to have these conversations sometimes, but you will preserve your mental health and well-being when you do. You’ll most likely feel proud of yourself too!
How much sensitivity is the right amount? Have you ever gotten feedback that you’re either too sensitive or not sensitive enough? Feedback is an interesting thing, isn’t it? It’s often based on projection. It may have more to do with the person offering the feedback than the recipient. However, feedback does have its merits. It may be foolish to ignore it, especially if you’ve received that same information repeatedly. Ultimately, it is up to you to examine its content and determine its validity. It’s also up to you to choose what you will or won’t do in response.
If you’ve been told you’re too sensitive, this can feel like it invalidates or belittles your feelings. You have a right to your experience and interpretation even if others don’t agree or understand. Sensitivity can even be a gift. It’s often associated with empathy and heightened intuition.
However, it may be true that it would be helpful to you to learn to navigate the difficulties that life presents more skillfully. The world is often a messy place. It doesn’t always show up in a nice, neat package. The good news is that you have self-efficacy. You can utilize tools that help you feel more grounded, insulated and at home in your own skin. Exercise, or movement, is a great place to begin. Being around others who bring you joy more frequently is another positive strategy. Spending time in satisfying activities will also offset the tougher times when they do arise.
If you are someone one has been accused of being insensitive, this may be a growth edge for you. You can improve by softening your responses. You can also slow down your responses. Sometimes the knee jerk reaction can come across as brusque. If you’re in a hurry or preoccupied, your responses are more likely to be interpreted as curt. Be mindful when you engage in conversations, especially ones you already know might be a sensitive topic. Reach out to us today!
Have you ever noticed that the standard template for many books and movies is similar? Much of the story is based on the idea of the hero’s/shero’s saga. Typically, it works like this: there is a person who sets out on a journey, adventure or occupation of some kind; they encounter huge trials and tribulations; they overcome those obstacles emerging victoriously, and they finally return home as a hero/shero.
This concept in modern times was illuminated by author Joseph Campbell. He famously defined this ancient theme in three stages: departure, initiation, and return. The overarching theme is struggle and strife ultimately leading to triumph.
Think about compelling television shows, movies or plays with this theme. More alternative shows and books don’t always end in success — as can be the case in life. Nevertheless, many professionals hook the attention of people by playing into the hero’s/shero’s journey. Audience members, readers or potential buyers tend to feel inspired when they hear a tale of victory. Perhaps it cultivates hope in them. Maybe they somehow feel they, too, can be a victor. Are you more moved by someone who has overcome great odds to succeed than someone who hasn’t?
It’s natural to look to others as a hero, a conqueror of overwhelming odds. Perhaps you have been that person. In the struggles you are currently encountering, you can access your inner power to rise to the occasion. This means coming into your alignment in the present moment and seeing yourself as brave and powerful. Your assessment of yourself is paramount to how you face the current problems in your life.
You don’t have to be a movie star or social media sensation to be a hero. Many people who have endured trying times and traumas have risen to the challenge, and ultimately succeeded. Perhaps you have been more resourceful and resilient than you realize.
Have you ever been in a hotel or motel and received a morning wake-up call? For many, that’s a comforting feeling knowing they will be taken care of.
On the other hand, have you had another type of wake-up — the kind that alarms you in an unsettling way? If you’ve found yourself in the throes of a life-threatening illness, you can’t ignore the state of health at hand any longer. Maybe a loved one became seriously ill, and you were suddenly confronted with the transitory nature of their mortality. Perhaps a friend passed away without warning. It may have shaken you to the core. Those kinds of wake-up calls elicit a radical shift in perception.
Numerous people suffer financial losses, divorces or their homes being destroyed. Those kinds of shocking circumstances cause their reality to shift, likely in a lasting way. They cannot return to the way things formerly were because the change in their consciousness is so profound.
Sometimes wake-up calls are less dire but still impactful. Maybe you tended to mindlessly drive too fast but then you caused an accident that could have seriously hurt another person. You woke up. You amended your driving habits and corrected those past patterns. You changed because you saw life from a radically different perspective.
What kind of feedback are you currently receiving in your life? You don’t have to end up in a hospital because of poor self-care. You can avoid bankruptcy by practicing prudent financial habits. You can circumvent the loss of a close relationship by being thoughtful and loving. You can overcome a performance improvement plan at work by diligently stepping up. Not all wake-up calls are avoidable, but many are.
Most of all, you can have a better life by owning and attending to your personal issues. You can be a better version of yourself and evade a negative, and perhaps unnecessary wakeup call.