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Thinking is Not the Same As Doing

(This post originally appeared in the June 4, 2022 newsletter)

The text read, "Still would love to see a short summary of your journal when you get a chance." A fellow coach was doing exactly what I asked her to during my coaching session a week prior: hold me accountable for journaling about this question of would I break my pledge of a sober 2022 and drink alcohol during my upcoming Mexican vacation.

I had committed to journal about the various thoughts I was having, the questions that still lingered, and how I wanted to make this decision. And here, seven days later, when she texted to ask how my journaling was going, my response was, "I've been thinking about it a lot." Her gentle push reminded me of exactly what Mel Robbins tweeted above.

I was thinking about this decision non-stop. Turning it over and over in my brain was allowing me to feel like I was "doing" something. But I hadn't actually done anything to genuinely make progress. My thoughts needed to be given the light of day and space outside the confines of my head to be truly explored. And so, I finally sat down to journal and lean into the different perspectives I was considering.

If you have coached with me, you know we do perspective work whenever a client is locked in a view point, only able to see a situation in a singular way. I coach the client to "try on" different ways of viewing the situation, maybe how their spirit animal would see this scenario or how their favorite movie might approach it. This approach can feel kind of goofy at first (just ask the client who found herself sitting on her office floor moving like a giraffe), but movement and practicing viewing something from a different perspective changes everything. Our bodies move, our neurons fire, and we can see things in a whole new way.

As I starting journaling, I drew up my own wheel of perspectives (below), a tool I learned in the Balance course of my Co-Active training.

Each section has questions I'm exploring as I undertake this decision making process. I've been journaling about each section individually, and at the end of each, creating a "Reflections on Reflections" bullet point list of the themes that emerged as I wrote.

Departure is only three days away. I haven't fully arrived at my decision yet. But it feels good to know that I'm a heck of a lot closer than I was when I was merely "thinking."

If you're stuck in singular viewpoint or wrestling with a tough decision, get in touch. Let's do a complimentary coaching session to see how practicing perspectives can move you from "thinking" to doing.


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