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My private thoughts on Trump’s election

My private thoughts on Trump’s election

November 23, 2016

I've never publicly shared my private thoughts about an election before. Now let me be clear, this isn't a "we won" or "we lost" rant. I'm interested in the post election fallout.

The national reaction to this election is fascinating. It underscores a fundamental truth: how you feel about a situation depends on how you think about it.

What I've noticed about this election is that many people are enrolled into a "story" about the outcome. I mean, nothing's happened yet! Trump hasn't even been sworn in. But people are already predicting doom or salvation, depending on their point of view.

Last week I was in Manhattan, right next to Trump Towers and saw hysteria, protests and even violence is arising from fear. The media loves this, and in my opinion, encourages it by fanning the panic and dread. Being on the inside of publishing we've always been taught "If it bleeds, it leads". Panic and dread sell more papers (or more clicks). But remember, if you read panic and dread, you internalize it - even on the smallest level. Pretty soon, you're living with Peter Panic and Debbie Dread in your family room.

Let's leave the election for a moment and go bigger.

How you think about an event, situation, and fact affects how you feel about it. In business, if you're thinking negatively about your company or clients, you're going to be exuding negativity whether you realize it or not. It will inevitably bring you and your team down. Conversely, if you're putting out positive thoughts, they'll know too. You can't hide it!

Sometimes we work in professions that create negativity for ourselves. For example, lawyers are trained to look for problems: in contracts, business deals, settlements, witness testimony. Lawyers can automatically look negatively on an upcoming possibility simply because of their training.

Personally, I spend much of my time looking for holes in people's businesses. What's not working out? What's falling through the gaps? I often have to proactively pull myself l out of the negativity and focus on the good. Call it an occupational hazard.

Remember: "So goes the leader, so goes the organization."

And where does it start? Your internal dialogue. What "story" are you telling yourself?

I've spent years researching and working on our internal dialogues: reading, writing, role playing, facilitating, going to seminars, leading men's workshops, couples workshops. You name it; I've done it. I'm always in search of better ways for people, families and businesses to thrive.

 

Call us and schedule a complimentary session: 
How to improve your inner game, grow your business and thrive.

 

The primary goal of this research is to determine exactly how our thoughts influence our feelings.

Two people are fired from their jobs. One can be ecstatic; the other in despair. The first may have wanted to quit, but wanted to receive his unemployment package. He's quite happy. The other may have recently bought a new house. He's in despair.

The situation is identical, but their reactions are exclusively due to the story going on behind the scenes.

But here's the secret - Your feelings are fluid. They can be changed. Reframe the story and you can flip the feelings.

Here are 7 Fundamentals to Reframe Your Thinking

  1. You don't have to believe all of your thoughts. Remember, you are in control of your mind. You can choose what you think, and consequently what you feel. You're empowered.
  2. Notice your unspoken expectations. An inner dialogue might flow like this."Why am I feeling sad? Because of my interaction with Jane, my accountant. Why am I so upset by our meeting? The company is doing well in all areas except the 'cost of goods sold' has gone up. What are my unspoken expectations? Oh, that everything works out perfectly and our margins always rise." Once you've identified your underlying expectations, you can then understand how it's affecting your feelings.
  3. Hold off on catastrophizing. Many of us have the tendency of looking into the future and finding the worst possible outcome to focus on. So let's say your COGS (Cost Of Goods Sold) has gone up, and your margins have gone down. Where does this leave you? Living on the street in a cardboard box? Or giving out smaller bonuses at the holidays and taking a staycation? It's not a catastrophe and you have the ability to adapt. When you start to catastrophize, get a grip, and remind yourself that the worst outcome is not inevitable.
  4. Avoid the "Yeah... but" response. If you're saying this, it means you may be holding onto the "reality" of a negative future. The phrase that follows the word "but" always indicates how you really feel. Listen closely for the next time you say it.
  5. Nothing in the future is 100% known. Even with the best forecasting and predictions, you really don't know what is going to happen. Remember the election? Something unexpected can always emerge to change the course of events. Some clients take months of convincing and others seem to fall into your lap with no effort, and up goes your bottom line! You really don't know what the future brings; so stop being so darn certain when it comes to bad predictions!
  6. Focus on what you CAN do, rather than on what's beyond your control. Stephen Covey maps 3 concentric circles. The innermost is your Circle of Control, the second is your Circle of Influence and the outermost is your Circle of Concern. Concentrate on the things that are inside of your circles of influence and control, instead of what's beyond - in your Circle of Concern. This is a wonderful way to live in a proactive, energized way. *Click the link below for the worksheet.
  7. Reframe: I'm not a victim, this is good challenge. It's amazing, but we are richest victims in the world. If you earn $50,000 you are in the top 1% of the richest people in the world by income. If we listen closely to our language so often we act and sound powerless. We give over all of our power to the outside oppressors and circumstances: the president, the government, the economy, the competition, the employee. But it doesn't have to be that way. You can choose to turn this paradigm on it's head in a second with this simple but powerful tool.

There are three parts:

  1. Have a deep belief that life is good and that you can "succeed" in any situation.
  2. Rename the "Oppressor" (negative circumstance or person) the "Challenger". Tell yourself that this person (or circumstance) is here to challenge me to work towards something better.
  3. Rename the "Victim" to "Creator". Stop viewing yourself as a victim. Instead see yourself as a Creator of a new future that is being spurred on by the Challenger. 8We are currently working with clients who feel like a victims of heightened regulation of CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau). For some they have become deflated and feel victimized and powerless. Others have seen it as a challenge to retool their current business and focus on different market.

(This work is based on Karpman's Drama Triangle and The Empowerment Dynamic.)

I heard this a true story from one of my teachers, Z. Pliskin, which beautifully illustrates this point.

His young son was a redhead. He was frequently teased by some kids in school about being a redhead and they called him "Gingi" (a nickname for redhead). He would come home crying that he was being teased.

His father, recognizing that the tease of being different could be reframed into a pride of uniqueness, offered his son a $1 for every time the classmates called him "Gingi".

After they struck the deal the boy was thrilled when someone called him Gingi. Ka-ching!!! He couldn't wait for someone to call him the name. He would run home and present his dad with the invoice.

In a short period of time, the issue became a non issue and the payments stopped. The boy would forevermore sport his red hair with pride.

Success in business is as much an inner game as an outer game.

Master reframing and you'll be able to make more money and lead a better organization from a place of power and positivity.

 

Taking you from where you are to where you want to be,

Jon