The Art of Strengths Coaching

R is for Balancing Relentlessness, Relaxation And Results  

There are many ways to do fine work. One approach is to get the right balance between relentlessness and relaxation on the ways towards achieving the desired results.

Great workers start by clarifying the real results they want to achieve. They bear in mind what they can and can’t control in the situation, however, when clarifying these results.

They often aim to do their personal or professional best. Sometimes this will result in achieving peak performance. Sometimes it will also result in achieving certain prizes.

Such workers sometimes see the destination quickly. They go A, B … and then leap to … Z. They see, feel and experience what it will be like to reach the goal.

Sometimes this process takes longer. They may have a flash of intuition, but then they gather more information. They test the idea and let it incubate. Then, when they are ready, they clarify the picture of success.

Great workers clarify the strategy they want to follow to do their best to reach the goal. They then pursue this relentlessly. They keep doing the right things in the right way every day.

When appropriate, they also relax. Sometimes this means resting and revitalising themselves. Sometimes it means relaxing when actually performing. They are then more able to flow, focus and finish.

Looking back, can you think of a situation when you balanced being relentless and relaxed on the way towards achieving a goal? You may have done this when renovating a house, doing a creative project, playing a sport, working to find your ideal job or whatever.

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

Describe a specific situation when you balanced relentlessness and relaxation on the way towards achieving the desired results.

Describe the specific things you did to balance relentlessness and relaxation.

Describe the specific things that happened as a result.

 

Imagine that you want to follow similar principles in the future. You have already clarified the picture of success. Let’s explore how you can work towards achieving the desired results.

Relentlessness

Great workers follow their chosen rhythm. This is often based on their successful style of working. They then follow this rhythm relentlessly to deliver the required results.

Sometimes they follow their strategy at full speed, whilst sometimes they may vary the pace. They may also build in times to relax, re-centre and refresh themselves on the journey. They then pick up the rhythm again to tackle their chosen task.

Peak performers have natural discipline in the areas where they are brilliant. They organise things to, as far as possible, create predictability. This gives them freedom to respond when the unexpected happens.

Such workers have elements of OCD. By this I mean Obsessive Compulsive Discipline rather than Disorder. They tend to be obsessively disciplined in the activities where they excel. Such people know how to use this obsession, however, rather than be used by it.

Imagine you have clarified your picture of success. Here are some questions it can be useful to explore. 

How can you follow your chosen rhythm to work towards achieving your goals?  

How can you, when appropriate, build in time to rest, re-centre and refresh yourself on the journey?

How can you then pick up your rhythm again and, in your own way, pursue this relentlessly?

Relaxation

Great workers know how to relax. As mentioned earlier, this sometimes means resting. On other occasions, however, it means relaxing when actually performing. They are then more able to flow, focus and finish.

Such workers develop an inner discipline that ensures they consistently perform superb work. They then move into another zone to deliver peak performances.

Many athletes, for example, relax before going into the arena. They aim to be calm, controlled and centred. Clicking into gear, they are then totally present and give their best to achieve the goals.

Great workers often separate the phases of being relentless and relaxed. Sometimes, however, they are able to combine both elements at once and go into a state of relaxed relentlessness. They then experience a sense of flow on the way towards reaching a goal.

What happens if things go awry? They then go back to basics and keep doing the right things in the right way. They keep doing these things until they feel ready to take the next step towards delivering the brilliance.

Let’s return to your own life and work. Looking ahead, can you think of a situation in which you want to balance relentlessness and relaxation on the way towards achieving a goal?

You may want to follow this path when doing a creative project, performing in a sport or doing satisfying work. You may want to do it when building a business, leading a team or pursuing a dream.

Looking ahead, how can you clarify the real results you want to achieve? How can you settle on your chosen rhythm? How can you keep doing the right things in the right way every day? How can you then, when appropriate, relax to deliver the goods?

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

Describe a specific situation in the future when you may want to balance relentlessness and relaxation on the way towards achieving the desired results.

Describe the specific things you can do to balance relentlessness and relaxation.

Describe the specific things that may happen as a result.

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