Have you ever thought to yourself, maybe about your boss, your colleagues, your spouse or your dog for that matter… “If only so-and-so did such-and-such, my life would be so much better?”
Of course you did! We all do.
The other day I was working with a sales team and a leadership team who were not seeing eye-to-eye. In having conversations with both groups, this was the phrase I heard over and over again: “If only my boss could do this then I would do it…” “If only my boss did this then I would do it…”
From the bosses, “If only my team would do this…” “If only he would do this then I would do that…” and as I kept listening this is all I was hearing. “If only so-and-so did this,” “if only” and the finger-pointing was happening.
What I realized, when the finger-pointing starts happening the only direction to go is down. I am on a mission to help people engage and connect with each other. When this starts happening the connection is busted!
What do we need to do instead? We need to take ownership of our mindset, of our actions, and of our attitude.
So when you find yourself saying “if only so-and-so would do such-and-such” here’s two steps that you can take to turn that around and to take ownership so you can connect .
Number one is to go to that person and instead of saying, “If only so-and-so…” go to them and switch it around and say, “Hey Erin, you know what would be really helpful is if you did that such-and-such…” We tend to keep it in here, and we tend to do this, instead of going and actually having the conversation with a person. Phrasing it in the way of, “Do you know would be helpful…” and when you say that most people are going to want to be helpful!
The second tip I have is instead of doing this… we point the finger right here and we say to ourselves, “What can I do? What action can I take? How could I think differently about the situation?” Well I am all for all of our bosses, our spouses, and our pets being inspirational and awesome and amazing at all times. We all know that’s not the case. So the one person that you have with you at all times is you .It would be ideal for someone else to inspire us, but the person that can inspire you at all times is the person that you have at all times, which is yourself. So instead of saying, “If only this person…” point the finger at yourself and say, “What can I do to take action? What can I do to change my attitude?” That’s when connection happens. That’s when impact happens, and that’s what we are after!