19 Aug, 2020 at 2:57 pm
Today I am working at my kitchen table, I have client commitments to complete, emails to answer and this blog to create. In addition, I have four 10-13-year-old boys playing with water balloons in the garden just outside that I am responsible for today (two of them mine). I am writing with one eye and ear on them and one on this text. I can feel my mindset turning inward at the juggle and challenge. When I feel that pressure rising, I have one instant technique I pull out of the Outward Mindset coaching practices; I shift my thinking that is inward called ‘I have to’.
From ‘have to’ work can feel a grind. The in-box pinging is a stress, the customer work I am completing is ‘hard’! I have to (see it!) dig deep for every word as if it weighs heavily on me. If the customer happens to call, I will answer professionally but I feel like I see them as a ‘have to’ pressure, an obstacle to me. If one of my colleagues inadvertently asks for something, they might get an annoyed look and a martyr filled sigh as my overworked ‘have to’ turns to seeing them as an obstacle to my progress.
When I feel I ‘have to’ watch the boys, they are noisy, inconsiderate, they have no idea how much work I have to do. I have to compromise my work experience to juggle their needs and it is so hard! In this version of reality, the boys are a hinderance, obstacles to me and my needs.
With a one-word shift; I ‘get to’ watch my boys laugh…a lot! Yes, they are loud but if I need them to quieten down, they will with a clear request. I get to honour the friendships and the outside fun they are having, something that when they are stuck on screens, I wish they would do.
And I remember, I get to do the work I love whilst being a parent, a part of my life I cherish. I get to have my in- box pinging with new opportunities. Post Covid19, or at least in this lull I get to try new ways of working. I get to challenge myself in completely new ways and the customers around me, my partner, my team, and my children remain people to me.
A tiny shift, but today try using ‘get to’ instead of ‘have to’ and see how the way you see those around you might turn.