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At some point in our lives someone has probably told us, “You are what you eat.” This is a not-so-distant cousin of the precautionary, “You may one day eat those words.” Which is to say that we’d best watch what we’re saying, (and how we say it) lest one day we have to metabolize some indigestible words.
Which brings me to my point.
Recently I reached out to a vendor who was working on a time-sensitive project for me. She is bright, competent, accommodating and well worth waiting for. Not two minutes into our conversation, she said to me, “I’m so sorry I haven’t gotten back to you sooner, I’ve just been slammed. I’m drowning in incomplete projects and a new client is just killing me with his demands. If I weren’t so buried, I’d be able to get this to you today, but would you mind if I didn’t finish your project until the end of the week?”
Whoa!!! Let’s rewind the tape. In a span of under 15 seconds this woman spoke the words slammed, drowning, killing and buried. Did she have a death wish? Was she homicidal? Of course not! She was ‘merely’ being unconscious in her communication, apparently oblivious to both the impact of her words and the power she possesses.
What she thought she was communicating was that she wasn’t able to take on one more thing right now. But rather than set a healthy boundary for herself, and give herself permission to own her own limits, she came up with some distancing language to do the difficult task for her.
Would you not agree that were you to use the words,
“I’m slammed,” whoever was making any demands or requests of you
would, by obligation, back off and give you a bit of space?
Here’s what happened.
Not willing to forfeit an opportunity to coach for impact, I gently pulled on her proverbial sleeve.
“Did you just hear what you just said?
I gather your business is thriving right now?
Yea, I guess so. Okay, it is. I’m busier than I can handle.
I hear that. May I make an observation?
You know that we’re going through some incredibly turbulent times right now?
Except it isn’t….it’s very believable because just about everyone we know is feeling it, is hurting from world events, decreased revenue, anxiety. Isn’t that so?”
Absolutely. Times are really scary.
Are they? You’re overwhelmed with more business than you say you can handle. You’re working seven days a week to keep up. You could use two more full time people to absorb the overflow. That doesn’t sound like business is down to me, that doesn’t sound scary. It sounds like business is exceeding your wildest expectations…. that you’re making up for several people who don’t have any business right now.
Well, I suppose that’s true.
Is it true or not?
Yes it’s true but I don’t want to sound like I’m bragging or anything.
Here’s what I’m thinking. You are the envy of all of your competition. You do not have a problem. You have some logistics, some wrinkles to iron out. But, in reality, the only problem you have is what you’re thinking and how you’re communicating those thoughts.
I urged this woman to change not only what she thought about her situation, but how she communicated those thoughts.
None of what she’d actually said to me was the truth. ‘Slammed’ could mean you don’t have the rent money and it’s the 10th of the month. ‘Drowning’ could translate to missing the basics so many months that you’re without heat, electricity or phone service. Buried might be, well, you get the idea.
I suggested that she begin to think of this time as one in which she is ‘managing her miracles’. That’s right. She had created so much abundance, so many opportunities, so plentiful an experience that she didn’t have the infrastructure to meticulously execute her miracles. That is not a problem. It is a kink, a blip, a moment, AND it’s far better than the alternative (no business).
This is an invitation for us to be truthful with ourselves, to be transparent in our motives, clear in our objectives and accountable for our results. There is no reason in the world that we should ever, ever have to apologize for our success, for manifesting our desires, for realizing our goals. The next time you feel the pull of a powerful undertow, remind yourself you’re simply ‘managing your miracles.’
- If you can’t seem to juggle your schedule, tell yourself (and the world) that you’re managing your miracles.
- If your job description changes without your input, you’re managing an unexpected miracle.
- If your relationship ends, you’re managing the miracle of a new one coming your way.
- If you’re disappointed by an unintended outcome, you’re waiting for the miracle to make itself known to you.
What miracles have you manifested today? Care to share? Thoughts are things. Think positively powerful ones.
PLEASE SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS in the comments below.
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Nancy D. Solomon, MA Psych is the CEO and Founder of The Leadership Incubator where she helps leaders identify, address and resolve people problems before they become profit problems so everyone can focus on what they were hired to do– INNOVATE AND DRIVE GROWTH.
Known as The Impact Expert, she is a main stage speaker, expert trainer and veteran coach who helps leaders solve key issues related to leadership development, employee engagement, and advancing women.
Nancy has made a difference for such companies as Microsoft, Target, Acura, Westin, Nordstrom & ADP as well as with many passionate individuals.