“It takes significantly more effort to row against the tide than go with it.”
If you have ever canoed on a river, you will understand that it takes significantly more effort to row upstream against the flow than to go with it. This is no different from trying to get someone who disagrees with you to instantly see and accept your point of view. Or, telling yourself to be happy, when you are in precarious situation that is certainly not conducive to that happy state.
Positive affirmations have their place, but they’re not appropriate all the time. I wrote about “faking it, to make it” in another post, which is one of many techniques to get yourself out of progressively negative thoughts and into a more complementary state. However, there are times when we must not “fake it” but “face it” head on, i.e., when we must acknowledge the reality and full unpleasantness of the situation and begin working on a resolution.
Here are some simple tips:
- Make your environment — physical or mental — conducive to solving the problem at hand. Get yourself in the direction of the flow to ensure you are not being reactive to a situation.
- Take control and be proactive, even when you’re still working towards a solution. And most importantly, remember to relax and invite ideas to come to you.
- Remember to involve your people (employees, peers or subordinates) in the process and share any resulting success.