When I think about my most vulnerable, stuck places sometimes, I wonder how I got there. How in the world did I ever end up here?
What’s clear is that whatever got me here, isn’t going to get me where I want to go, unless I want to end up here again.
When I’m exhausted after an hour and a half of homework with the boys that should have taken 20 minutes, I recognize that repeating my behavior daily isn’t going to get me where I want to go. When I’m frustrated at the way I’ve shown up in a disagreement with Scott, I realize that continuing to show up that way isn’t going to take my marriage where I want it to go. Even when I hit the buzzer in the morning and respond to a social media notification instead of making the intentional choice to direct those first few minutes, it’s clear I’ll be rushing to finish this blog before the kids are up. That’s certainly not how I want to start my day.
Yet, I do it.
Each of those things happens with some regularity. I repeat the same behavior, hoping for a different result. Even though I know so well that what brought me here isn’t going to take me where I want to go. That’s the definition of insanity right? Repeating the same behavior and expecting a different result. I may march to a little different drum, but I’m not insane.
I can make better choices, and so can you.
Stop reading right now and think of one behavior (of yours) that takes you to a place you really don’t want to be. . .
Now think of one small tweak you can make to that behavior this week. . . the tweak could involve something like planning a different response ahead of time, adjusting your expectations of the outcome, allowing some things to be left undone, changing the time of day or the amount of time you give to a certain task.
What if you devised a plan to smile (in your closet, a bathroom stall… wherever) for thirty seconds before breakfast, homework, a deep conversation or a board meeting?
Did you know that smiling, the physical act of smiling, releases dopamine (a feel good chemical) into your brain? It does! Try it out. Even if you don’t feel like it at first. (I don’t recommend smiling in the middle of an intense situation, although with kids, it might actually work.) 😉 Set a timer. How could it hurt?
Think about where you are and the behaviors that brought you here.
If you’re not in a place you want to be, change one small behavior this week. Don’t plan on the whole year. Just 7 days. It will get you closer to where you really want to go. When it does, I bet you’ll want to keep it up!
I’d love to hear how it goes.
to more love,