The other day I was worrying and decided to use the self-coaching model to help put my worry into perspective. Some of you are familiar with the self-coaching model that I teach in my coaching practice to solve everyday problems. For those that aren’t, let me show you an example.
An “unintentional model” includes the thoughts that come into our minds when on auto pilot, often giving in to fears and worries. In an unintentional model about Christmas Day, my worries are: “No one is coming for Christmas and we are going to be sitting around all day looking at each other and feeling old and useless.”
When I think these thoughts I feel really sorry for myself, followed by chocolate, popcorn and vegging out in front of the TV to avoid thinking about how sad my Christmas is going to be. Then I feel even sorrier for myself as I gain weight, feel yucky since chocolate makes my tummy hurt, and feel even sadder because I will still miss out on the Christmas activities around me.
Unfortunately, unintentional thoughts are self-perpetuating…
There is another way. We take control of our thoughts and create what is called an “Intentional Model”. This is when we take responsibility for our ourselves and choose to create a result that will bring us what we want, which in this case it is a cozy, happy, connected Christmas day.
In this new intentional model my thought is: “Christmas can be whatever we want it to be and I want it to be fun.” This thought makes me feel really curious about how we are going to make that happen. For Christmas Day we choose simple foods that we enjoy preparing, we make the house smell wonderful, we create our own special Christmas music play list, we start the fake fire on the TV screen, we make arrangements to talk to our kids, grand-kids and family, we play games, we do a puzzle together, we listen to audio books that we both enjoy listening to, we go to a movie, we take a walk, and we might even connect with friends who are in the same boat. We also keep our eyes and ears open for any other opportunities that we might enjoy together.
Now we might still have a few minutes when we feel lonely together, because we do miss our Christmas’ past and all of the joyous years we shared with our children – and that’s Ok. So this is how I stopped worrying about and started planning our Christmas Day.
Does this sound familiar to you? What things do you worry about? Is there some way to turn these thoughts around? I can show you how applying the self-coaching model can help you change how you see things. Send me an email with your story and your worries, and I will help you create a new, more intentional, more enjoyable model.