“I need to slow down” Molly said to me last week.
I hear this a lot from clients and it always makes me curious – did you notice the language?
“I need” is a lot like “I should” or “I ought to”. Our words are usually a reflection of our mindset so in this case slowing down is something Molly wants and feels she should be able to achieve. But you can tell that she isn’t committed to it and perhaps doesn’t really believe it’s possible for her.
Molly told me she felt like slowing down has actually become pretty much just another thing on her to-do list. Frustrating for her because she was looking for more of a life shift than just another tick-box.
The clincher here is this…
As long as you think you should be doing something it will always remain undone.
Sound simple?? That’s because it is!!
A compelling story
When I lived in London I used to commute to work by push-bike. Not the MOST fun way to travel in such a compact and frenetic city, but I did it every week (most days) for 2 ish years.
Now, I love cycling but I’m not an addict. I’ve got a terrible sense of direction so as someone who was ALWAYS getting lost I’m the first the recognise the downsides of this mode of travel for me. But nonetheless I was compelled to keep up this (some might say) crazy routine.
- Cycling saved me a bucket load of money. For every week I cycled I saved £15 easy. That’s £15 more to spend on pizza or some other delicious morsel my friends!
- Cycling kept me fit – 5 miles each way, 10 miles a day, 50 miles a week…That’s 50 miles to burn off all those sumptuous tastebud ticklers…
- It meant I avoided the tube and having my head buried in someone else’s armpit. No food anecdotes on this one. Just good sense.
- I believe in cycling and wanted (ever so humbly) to practice what I preach!
Four compelling reasons in one. It wasn’t so much about my love of two wheels (or food) as it was that it was too compelling to avoid.
How do you make something compelling?
For Molly slowing down had to become this compelling. No questions asked. Just like me and my cycling, she had to have:
- no viable alternatives.
- total commitment to the idea
- complete clarity on what slowing down looked like and meant on a daily basis
And that’s what you need in order to achieve anything. It has to be you’re only option. The only finger in the only pie. The only egg in the basket. You get the picture.
Ball’s in your court
Let me know in the comments:
- What in your life do you want but haven’t yet made compelling?
- And, what experiences have you had of something being a compelling must?
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