You may have heard people saying “Let’s do this the smart way”, but what does this mean in practice? Can you change the way you think and always choose the ‘smart’ way to do things? The answer is yes!
These tools will help you get through difficult days, solve problems and avoid feeling stressed.
- Don’t Make Assumptions
We all make assumptions (guessing what other people mean). For example, we make assumptions about what our colleagues think of us or how our manager feels about our performance. Making assumptions is normal but it can lead to problems. Issues come when you assume something is true but you don’t really know.
There are two ways to notice assumptions, in yourself and in others: vagueness and generalisation.
Vague (not clearly expressed) wording usually shows an assumption is being made. Ask yourself whether you are being given facts and information, or just assumptions.
Generalisations (taking one piece of information and applying it widely) such as, “My manager liked it done this way last time, I’m sure it’s fine not to check this time” can be dangerous. You cannot be certain of something unless you clearly ask. Rather than guessing, learn to ask questions that lead to true information.
- Don’t Waste Time On What You Can’t Change
Change is hard for everyone; if you struggle with change, ask yourself whether or not you can do something about what has happened.
Don’t waste time on what you can’t do and can’t change. Concentrate on the things you can do and areas where you can make a difference. It’s more productive and rewarding.
- See Opportunities, Not Problems
Some people can see opportunities (possibilities of good things) while others only see problems. To be in the first group, you need to change how you think. Of course, when something bad happens it’s easy to feel there’s nothing good about it at all. But you can learn to see things differently.
For example, when you try something new and fail, you can learn to do better next time. When you get fired from a job, perhaps it will allow you to get a better one. Try to look at life situations in a more positive way.
- Avoid The Blame Game
When things go wrong, it’s easy to blame others. However, this doesn’t solve anything. When you blame someone, they often get defensive, meaning they attempt to blame you. It goes round and round; you blame them, they blame you. This takes up a lot of time and energy.
When people focus on blame, no one moves forward. Nobody learns anything because there’s nothing much to learn from arguing. Rather than blaming others, ask yourself, “What can we do to find a solution?”
Look at what you could have done better, and what steps you can take to reach a positive end result. What matters is that instead of blame, you focus on solutions.
Tools: Sweet Teams Are Made Of This, Motivation Mastery, Communication Power