That will sound a big ask to some people – to transform the hard stuff of anger into the soft stuff of forgiveness – especially when the hurt has been so great. I write this, however on the eve of Australia Day 2016. It is the final day of Rosie Batty’s term as Australian of the Year. If there was anyone in this country who had reason to hold on to anger, it had to be her. She has suffered the most extraordinary pain when her partner murdered their 9 year old son about 18 months ago. Calling her emotionally intelligent is quite an understatement. She has displayed extraordinary self-awareness, resilience and pro-activity in the way she has turned this enormously painful situation into a life-changing positive for herself and our whole nation. She has brought domestic violence in this country out of the closet. She has created great awareness of it through her own tragedy. She has incited the will of the nation to take constructive action to prevent it. While she has achieved a great amount, it has only just begun. Underneath all her activity, however, and what has inspired so many people, is the way she has taken anger and turned it into forgiveness and into something immensely constructive.
What can we learn from Rosie Batty?
In June 2015, Roy Morgan Research revealed that Australia’s full-time workforce had a total of 123,510 days of annual accrued leave. That’s a lot of people who have deferred taking holidays presumably for a whole range of reasons. In this age of exponential change that happens faster than we can keep up, one of those reasons would be that they don’t have time! Work-life integration is one of the unsolvables.
So a better title for this blog may have been – How To Take Leave When You Are Too Busy To Take It! That’s the dilemma so many people share with me when I am mentoring or coaching them. You know you need a break. You want to take a break, but you also know that the amount of work involved to get you out of the office and what will be there when you get back means there is little value in going. If you do go it takes you at least a week to unwind and then the second week you begin to build up to your return. You begin to worry about what will be there when you get back. So the leave is not really serving any purpose.
David Rock’s “Half-time August” is one solution to this dilemma.
We all know reactive people who constantly complain about what “They” are not doing and should be doing.
“They” are the people out there who are responsible for everything that goes wrong in their lives. “They” are the people who should fix it all up – their CEOs, managers, partners, their politicians, their governments.
Ghandi says that instead of us wanting “They” to make the changes we want in our lives and our world, we BE that change.
This is exactly what proactive people do.
Being pro-active was one of the late Stephen Covey’s 7 habits of highly effective people. It was about taking initiative, but also learning “response-ability”.
So take action now, BE PRO-ACTIVE. Make your life everything you want it to be and in the process empower everyone who is part of your life to be the same.
I have read blogs and articles over recent weeks from people saying they have given up on setting goals because they never keep them anyway. I was reminded then of a comment someone made: “In the absence of clear goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily acts of trivia.”
I do set goals. I don’t always keep them but if I abandon them I do so for a conscious reason, often because I have realised they are no longer relevant to what I want or where I want to go.
While goal-setting is important to me, I do know that space where I lose focus and direction, where I become distracted by “stuff” that really is not important and so become victim to performing “daily acts of trivia”. What’s now different for me is that I regularly review my goals and that gets me back on track quickly.
Most of the people I am reading about, and those I talk with as a coach or mentor, abandon their goals because “life” gets in the way – albeit often “life” that is urgent but unimportant. Or alternatively they abandon them because it all becomes too hard – the self-discipline, the persistence, the required resilience and the commitment.
Read on to hear about 5 keys to making goal setting work for you.
In my blog post on New Year’s Eve, I asked you What Change Have You Made In Your Life This Year?
I also left you with some questions to reflect on as you begin the new year.
Today I want to give you some further inspiration for 2016 – the latest edition of the e-book Expect More From 2016 – Strategies for Success from 22 Leading Experts in Personal and Professional Development.
Every year Gihan Perera brings together a group of experts and invites them to write an article that may inspire people in the new year. It has been my privilege to be involved now over many years.
This year my article is : Be An Empowered Leader – Even If You Are Not The Boss.Read More
We will open the book.
Its pages are blank.
We are going to put words on them ourselves.
The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter
is called New Year’s Day.
– Edith Lovejoy Pierce (20th Century American poet).
What words are you going to write on the pages of the book of your life in 2016?Read More