The Art of Strengths Coaching

P is for Positive Habits

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There are many ways for people to achieve their goals. One approach is for them to follow positive habits that produce peak performances.

Great workers do this all the time. They start by setting a specific goal. They then translate this into a clear picture of success.

Such people clarify the key strategies they can follow to achieve the goal. They translate these into the positive habits they can follow in their daily actions. People then do the right things in the right way to achieve success.

Looking back, when have you followed this pattern in your own way? You may have been studying for an exam, getting your body in shape, working to hit a deadline or whatever.

If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to do the following things.

Describe a specific situation in the past when you followed positive habits and did your best to achieve peak performance.

Describe the specific things you did then to follow positive habits and do your best to achieve peak performance.

Describe the specific outcomes – the specific things that happened – as a result of you following positive habits and doing your best to achieve peak performance.

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Looking ahead, can you think of certain positive habits you would like to follow to achieve a personal goal? You may wish to develop a healthy lifestyle, perform satisfying work, do things that encourage yourself or whatever.

People who pursue good habits successfully often apply the organic approach. They build on the positive habits they already have – even if they have only followed these for a few minutes – rather than try to change.

People who try to adopt radically different new habits seldom succeed. There are exceptions, of course, such as when a person is shocked into adopting a new lifestyle in order to stay alive.

Everybody has a positive history. Everybody has done superb work and overcome challenges. Everybody has followed successful principles, even if only for a few minutes.

The organic approach helps people to find these patterns. It helps them to build on their positive habits – plus develop other skills – to achieve success.

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People can obviously learn things from outside, such as knowledge, models and tools. But the belief must come from within. People are more likely to sustain their motivation when following successful principles they know will work in a situation.

Let’s return to your own life and work. Looking to the future, what is a personal goal you would like to achieve? What is your picture of success?

What are the key strategies you can follow to give yourself the greatest chance of success? What are the positive habits you can follow to translate these strategies into action?

Looking back at your positive history, when have you followed some of these habits in the past? What did you do right then to translate the habits into action? How can you follow some of these principles – plus maybe add other skills – to pursue the positive habits in the future?

Before committing yourself, be clear on the work involved. What will be the pluses and minuses involved in working to achieve the goal? How can you build on the pluses and minimise the minuses?

Bearing these things in mind, are you prepared to accept the whole package? On a scale 0 – 10, how committed are you to reaching the goal? Make sure your commitment is at least 8+/10.

If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to describe a personal goal you would like to achieve in the future and then to do the following things.

Describe the positive habits you can follow to give yourself the greatest chance of achieving the personal goal.

Describe the specific things you have done in the past to follow these positive habits, even if you only followed them for a short time.

Describe the specific things you can do to build on these principles – plus maybe add other skills – to follow the positive habits to achieve the personal goal.

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