You may not know this about me, but I love books. I always have. Finding the books is the easy part, finding the time…not so much. Fortunately, reading is a big part of what I need to do in my work. That may not be true for you. Without my trusty magic wand, I can’t help you make more time in your days for reading. (Even though I highly recommend that you do.) But, I do read a lot. So, from time to time here on my blog I’m going to tell you about books that I think are worth your time. I’ll only write about the books I liked! Here’s my first thumbs-up.
Decide – Work Smarter, Reduce Your Stress and Lead by Example – Steve McClatchy
Much of the work that I do in coaching involves assisting leaders to get clear on what they want and need to do next. Then, and this is the tough part, they need to make decisions and take action. But, the action needs to be the ‘right’ action that lifts them out of wherever they are stuck.
What I liked about Decide is that McClatchy begins by applying the pain vs. gain philosophy to decision making. According to McClatchy, we make decisions on actions that will either move us forward (Gain) or simply keep us from falling backward and consumed by missed deadlines and commitments (Prevent Pain). He writes, “Tasks that you are driven toward by Gain produce more significant positive results in your life and your business than tasks that you are driven toward by Prevent Pain.” He goes on to say “When you are thinking about Gain and you are being motivated by Gain, you are focusing on something you want. You are figuring out how to produce a result that you desire in your life. You are not thinking about losing something or maintaining the status quo. You are working to move your life forward from where it is now, making it better than what it is today, considering how you desire your life to be. That’s exciting.” It’s really all about what you are running toward rather than what you are running from.
So, why can’t you decide? Maybe your time is so chock-full of ‘pain’ tasks you haven’t got the time or the energy to figure out a better way.
This book gave me a slightly different take on goal setting and a reminder about some tried and true time management principles. It was a quick read that got me re-focused on planning and action by analyzing tasks, getting organized, dealing with interruptions and staying on track.
What works for you when you can’t decide? Comment in the box below. I’d love to hear from you!
Author: Cathy Shaughnessy
Cathy Shaughnessy is a PRISM award winning ICF Master Certified Coach and author of the book series The Really Competent Coach. Cathy coaches senior leaders, mentors credentialed coaches, trains fledgling coaches and helps organizations build strong coaching cultures.
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