The Art of Strengths Coaching

S is for Shaping The Future And Doing Satisfying Things That Deliver Success

There are many ways to live life. One approach is to focus on shaping the future and doing satisfying things that deliver success.

Different people take this approach for different reasons. They may want to take more control, feel more alive, do rewarding work, improve their lifestyle or reach a particular goal.

They may also apply this approach in different ways. Here are some steps that individuals may take to pursue this route.

A person may choose to
shape their future by aiming:

To take care of their health … To take charge of their diary … To get some quick successes early in the morning … To spend time with positive people … To follow their rhythm rather than follow other people’s rhythm.

To organise their time in blocks … To do deep work as well as shallow work … To create times in the day to relax, re-centre and refocus … To do something each day to work towards achieving their life goals.

Looking back, can you think of a time when you chose to shape the future by doing satisfying things? This could have been in your personal or professional life.

You may have chosen to eat healthy food, return to playing the guitar, lead a creative project or do another activity. You chose to do positive things that resulted in you or others feeling good rather than feeling bad.

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 aimed to shape the future by doing satisfying things that delivered success.

Describe the specific things you did to take these steps.

Describe the specific things that happened as a result.

Imagine that a person wants to follow this route in their own way. Let’s explore some of the steps they can take.

Deciding To
Shape The Future

People make choices every minute. The choices they make have consequences – both for themselves and other people. The first step is therefore for a person to decide if they want to shape their future.

Bearing in mind what they can control, they can choose to make things happen rather than let things happen. They may say, for example: 

I want to be decisive rather than let things drift.

I want to be healthy rather than be unhealthy.

I want to do my personal best rather than not do my personal best.

Good decision makers focus on their choices and consequences. They often ask the following questions when tackling a challenge or aiming to reach a particular goal.

Looking ahead, what are the real results I want to achieve? What is the picture of success? What will be the benefits of achieving these results?

What are the options I have going forward? What are the consequences – the pluses and minuses – of each option? What is the attractiveness of each option?

Option A is: To …

The pluses are … The minuses are … The attractiveness rating is … /10 

Option B is: To …

The pluses are … The minuses are … The attractiveness rating is … /10

Option C is: To …

The pluses are … The minuses are … The attractiveness rating is … /10

Which is the route – or combination of routes – I want to follow? Looking at this route, what are the key strategies I can follow to give myself the greatest chance of success?

How can I translate these strategies into action? How can I encourage myself and others on the journey? What else can I do to achieve the picture of success?

Good decision makers make decisions based on the consequences of each option. They then aim to build on the pluses and minimise any minuses.

Imagine that a person decides they want to do more satisfying things in their life. Looking at the consequences, they may say, for example:

The pluses of doing more satisfying things will be that I feel more alive, get more energy and have more to give to other people.  

The minuses will be that I need to find ways to deal with any consequences of stopping some of the unsatisfying things I am doing. 

Bearing in mind the pluses and minuses, do I want to follow this route? If so, the next step is to translate this into an action plan that will achieve success.

Doing Satisfying Things

Imagine that a person has decided they want to do more of the things they find satisfying. The next steps are to clarify their strategy for making this happen. This involves taking the following steps.

The What

This involves clarifying the specific things they want to do. They can take this step by doing the following exercise.

The How

This involves clarifying how they can do more of these satisfying things. Imagine, for example, that they want to take care of their health.

One approach is for them to try to develop new habits. This sounds good, but it seldom works. Another approach is for them to find and follow their successful pattern for tackling such challenges. Let’s look at how this works in practise.

Everybody has a positive history. Everybody has tackled challenges or reached goals successfully. Bearing this in mind, it can be useful to ask a person the following questions.

Looking back, when have you tackled a similar challenge successfully? What did you do right then? What were the principles you followed? How did you translate these into action?

How can you follow some of these principles to tackle the present challenge? How can follow your successful pattern – plus maybe add other skills – to achieve your goals?

Imagine the person has clarified the strategies they want to follow. They may feel that their diary is so full that it is hard to fit in time to translate these into action. How to tackle this issue? One approach is for them:

To look ahead at their diary and start by putting in the satisfying things they want to do;

To then build other tasks around these satisfying things.

Some people may be resistant to this approach, especially if they are duty driven. But this approach is more effective than filling the diary with tasks and then trying to squeeze in the positive things.

The When

This involves translating their strategies into a clear action plan and moving into action. It is good for them to get a quick success because this creates momentum.

They can then aim to follow good habits and encourage themselves on the journey. Here is an exercise they can do to begin making their action plan.

Delivering Success

Imagine that a person has clarified their action plan for doing the things they find satisfying. They may aim to start exercising, eat healthy food, work with stimulating clients or whatever.

Bearing in mind the results they want to achieve, they will aim to implement the right strategy in the right way. The next step is for them to translate this into action.

Different people choose different ways to deliver the desired results. One approach is for them to focus on rehearsal, rhythm and results. Let’s explore these steps.

Rehearsal 

The person follows a certain ritual before moving into action. They relax, refocus on their aims and rehearse what they are going to do next. They then click into action and take the next step. 

Rhythm 

They follow their chosen rhythm. They keep following daily disciplines and pursue their chosen strategy. They also build in time for rest and rejuvenation before then resuming their rhythm.

Results 

They keep doing the right things in the right way. They keep reading reality by focusing on: a) The specific things that are working and then doing more of these; b) The specific things they can do better and how. They then do their best to achieve the picture of success.

 

There are many ways to live life. One approach is to shape the future by doing satisfying things and delivering success. 

Looking ahead, can you think of a situation when you may want to follow these steps in your own way? You may choose to take care of your health, return to following a passion, work with stimulating clients or do another activity.

What are the satisfying things you want to do? How can you do more of these in your daily life or work? How can you keep following good habits? How can you do your best to deliver success?

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

Describe a specific situation when you may want to shape the future by doing satisfying things that deliver success. 

Describe the specific steps you can take to do these things.

Describe the specific things that may happen as a result of taking these steps.

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>