How does this happen? It starts with our beliefs. For example, one of our clients (who we’ll call Sharon) had a very strong belief in the value of working hard and always doing your best. This belief had been passed on by her grandfather and was deeply ingrained. It led to thoughts and strong opinions about whether she and others were working hard enough. Sharon took actions based on these opinions, such as pushing herself relentlessly and often complaining to teammates if she felt a colleague was slacking off. While there were positive results of this belief, such as the amount of high quality work Sharon accomplished. But there were also negative results, like the fact that she rarely took time off and her health was suffering as a result. Another negative by-product was that others didn’t trust her, because she judged others harshly and talked behind their backs. So a belief that positively influenced her as a child became something that damaged her reputation.
Through coaching, Sharon realized she needed to change her belief so that she could evolve to the next level of leadership. She landed on the belief that “we are all doing the best we can with what we’ve got” and found that her stress level decreased significantly. She also began to strengthen her relationships as she stopped judging others’ work ethics.
So if you don’t like the results you’re getting, step back and look at the beliefs that are driving your thoughts and actions. When we are willing to question our beliefs, it allows room to choose our actions and get better results.