“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein
Whenever I have challenges in my life, I find it useful to find solutions and new opportunities on different levels of thinking from where the problem or challenge was created in the first place…
We believe that people have all the resources that they need to make the changes in their life that they want. It’s a coaches role to guide people into finding their own resources – not ones that are advised on.
Try this short exercise to help you find these new resources and help solve some of the challenges you have in your life (Personal and business).
This is a powerful exercise to build your resources and congruence by using neurological levels. You can do it mentally, but it is more powerful if you do it physically – take 15 minutes today to create some space for yourself and run this exercise.
Start by standing where you can take five steps backwards.
Think of a difficult situation where you would like to have more choice, where you have the suspicion you are not using all of your resources, where you are not completely ‘yourself’.
You can also use this exercise for a situation in which you want to make sure you engage all your resources.
Begin with the environment where you typically experience the problem, for example at home or in the office.
Describe your surroundings.
- Where are you?
- Who is around you?
- What do you notice in particular about this environment?
Take a step back and move into the behaviour level. Do the behaviour (i.e. change your physiology, breathing etc)
- What are you doing in this situation?
- Think about your movements, actions and thoughts.
- How does this behaviour fit into the environment?
Take another step back. Now you are in the capability level.
Think about your skills. In this situation you are only expressing a fraction of them.
- What other skills do you have in your life?
- What mental strategies do you have?
- What is the quality of your thinking?
- What qualities do you have that serve you well?
- What do you do well in any context?
Step back again. Reflect on your beliefs and values.
- What is important to you?
- What do you find worthwhile about what you do?
- What empowering beliefs do you have about yourself?
- What principles do you strive to act on?
Take a step back again and think about your unique personality and identity.
- What is your mission in life?
- What sort of person are you?
- Get a sense of who you truly are and express this as a metaphor.
Take a last step back. Think about how you are connected to all other living things and whatever you believe is beyond your life. Many people call this the spiritual realm. You may have religious beliefs or a personal philosophy. Take the time you need now to get a sense of what this means to you. At the very least this is about how you, as a unique individual connect with others. What metaphor would best describe this feeling?
Take this sense of connectedness with you as you step forward into your identity level. Make sure you take the physiology of the last level to the identity level. Notice the difference now.
Now take this enhanced sense of who you are and who you can be, with your metaphor that expresses it, and step forward to the level of beliefs and values.
- What is important to you now?
- What do you want to be important?
- What do you want to believe?
- What beliefs and values express your identity?
Take this new sense of your beliefs and values and step forward to the skill level. Keep your new physiology.
- How are your skills transformed with your new beliefs about yourself?
- How can you use your skills in the best possible way?
Step to the behaviour level with these new capabilities and keep the new physiology.
- How can you now act to express your alignment?
Now, step forward into your real present environment.
- How is it different when you bring these levels of yourself to it?
Notice how you feel about where you are with this greater depth and clarity from your beliefs, purpose and sense of connectedness. Know that with all of this new learning the problem situation has changed!