I've found this week to be both fast and slow; at times busy, unproductive and exhausting*. I wonder if you've felt that too?
The increased uncertainty and unrest in the world has me feeling hopelessly inadequate, and at the same time never more needed; as a friend, as a parent, and as a coach, with all the tools gifted to me in this role. And to be honest, the result of this push/pull has been paralysis; staying quiet and still, thinking in circles... self-doubt in full force!
Today's letter is not the one I sat down to write, but it feels necessary today.
Circle of concern
Do you ever think that just because you learned something new, everyone else must already know it and there's no point sharing? I'm slowly learning that this is not true, that I'm learning in order to pass on, not to catch up. That there is value in me sharing.
The circle of concern is a tool I've shared often recently and you can download it here(it's page two). Deceptively simple, it's a great way to let go of that which you cannot control and concentrate on controlling what you can. When you do this, you use your energy more wisely, feel more fulfilled and often less anxious. At my lowest ebb a few years ago, I remember thoroughly organising the cutlery drawer in my old kitchen; such a small thing but at the time it was the most I could manage and just that simple act of taking control made me feel I could take on the world!
In between the extremes of taking control and letting go, is a third circle which I believe is especially important just now... the circle of influence.
This is where you want to be if you can't control something but it's an important enough issue that you want to have some influence... this could be through making new connections, through educating yourself, through campaigning.
Right now there are many weighty issues this could apply to, however I'm quite deliberately choosing a pretty mundane, day-to-day example to bring this to life here...
Let's say you're concerned about what your child eats in school at lunchtime. You can't control what school serve in the canteen but you can control what packed lunch you send, and so you could choose to leave it there, content with your level of control.
Or... you might not be content with that and decide to increase your influence in this situation; maybe you join the PTA and start an internal campaign, or perhaps lobby the local council who set the menus, or even get Jamie Oliver on your side in a TV documentary! Can you see how you have choices as to how you could expand your influence? Can you see the choices in your own areas of concern?
If you're feeling a bit edgy about something important right now, the circles of concern is a great way to identify what you can and can't do right now, and what areas of influence are open to you.
I'd love to hear how you get on with this tool... do hit reply to let me know..
Thank you for inviting me into your inbox,
it's a real privilege to be here.
Have a great week and, as ever, stay curious!
P.S. *A wonderful, warm, totally fulfilling exception to my week was the vision board
workshop yesterday. I was privileged to share the (zoom)room with a fabulous group,
who were incredibly open to the process, so present for themselves during the day and generously brought their new insights with them as we wrapped up a special day.
I'm hugely grateful to them all for trusting me with their Saturday!