On a scale of 1-to-5 (5 being the highest), how would you rate your level of patience?
Right now, I would give myself a 3.5, but not so long ago, I probably would be at a -1.
Being patient and waiting has always been a huge challenge for me. When I get excited about something, I throw my full self and all my energy into it. When I want to work to change or update something, I tend to be all in and I push so hard that I may forget my initial goal in beginning the work. At times, I am so fully immersed in the “what next” of the project that I can’t pause to enjoy the evolving process and understand the lessons throughout the journey.
Yes, I’m laying it bare and telling on myself.
Because I’ve come to know and understand these things about my patience levels, I have worked hard to put the right tools in place to help my patience grow. I’ve learned how to map out my ideas in a way that allows me to see the full picture and then assign the appropriate timeline. Slowing down to see the detailed timeline keeps me from pushing too hard and unnecessarily moving toward burnout. This process also helps me stay open to the ebb and flow of getting things done which allows room for me to get help and assistance.
This way of operating and thinking did not happen overnight. It was a huge shift in how I saw myself in my work and owning my work. It was a major transition.
When I work with clients and new coaches who are making leaps and transitions, our sessions are full of brainstorming, projections, what ifs, and dream as big as you can discussions. I try to balance these talks with mindful reflections and celebrations of what is currently going on. It’s a tricky thing to do when what’s to come seems better than what’s at hand.
To stay focused on stretching toward the future without berating what has occurred and what is currently happening, I guide my clients through a Conscious Planning Exercise.
The Conscious Planning Exercise is designed to support clients in:
- Understanding their daily life as it is
- Shaping internal thoughts about what they want and deserve in their future
- Imagining their daily life after they have made their transition
- Paying attention to how their mental energy is being used
- Recognizing their current capabilities and focusing which ones need a minor or major tweak
- Developing resilience when staying put falsely feels better than getting up in front and living fully
The Conscious Planning Exercise is not meant to be completed in one coaching session. Usually it takes 2-to-4 weeks to effectively work through each step so the clients are fine-tuning and building their transitional plan. The hardest part of the exercise comes when clients have to shine an inner flashlight on how they think about themselves and if they are creating obstacles that are keeping them safe and small.
If you are making a transition (work, relationship, daily living, upgrading self-care, learning a new skill, etc), try the steps in this Conscious Planning Exercise.
Step 1: List 5 things you thought about doing five years ago. Which of the things did you do/accomplish? Why?
Step 2: When you think about your future in [list time frame], what five things do you want to see in it? How would you describe your mood when these five things show up? What would you be feeling on a daily basis when these five things are achieved?
Step 3: When you are predicting how you would achieve these five things in [list time frame], how are you structuring your time on a daily basis? What resources are readily available to support you? What systems or strategies are you using to keep you focused and motivated?
Step 4: In looking at the mission statement for your life and transition, do you need to revise your personal mission statement? Is your vision/purpose still clear to you? Are there any driving concepts that you need to add or omit?
What is your current process for making transitions in your life? How are you making sure you are living in the front row and not on the sidelines?
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