Winning Words

Avoid the impossible and seek the possible

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Wishing you and your family safety, good health, patience, and happiness as we all go through this time together. And if your family or friends have experienced illness or loss, I will keep you in my prayers. Just send me an email at mnorton@tramazing.com to let me know how I can best pray for you.

In the business circles that I work in, my peers and I are having conversations all the time about how we are pivoting where we need to, discussing where we can maintain consistency and normalcy, and talking about how we can best help our people and their families, our customers, and our partners to stay safe and still stay optimistic and productive during this time.

Our conversations include the newest news and information that is available regarding employment, the economy, and the impact of COVID-19. The struggles are real and there is a lot of uncertainty. Uncertainty causes fear, worry, and doubt. And when that happens, we know that we all act or react differently. Some of us go into idle mode. Some of us go into hyperactive mode. And some of us maintain the same routine and go through their day just as they had before the pandemic.

What typically happens is that when we react, we never just simply react. We either overreact and make things worse, or we underreact and don’t do enough, or maybe do nothing at all. Maybe it makes sense to think about the word respond instead of using the word react. If we change our mindset and think about how we can respond, we will usually make a much better decision as we take the time to think about our response and how we handle what is going on.

We now have millions of people working from home or who have been furloughed or laid off and are at home without work. And we know that there could be some idle time, down time, or feeling down time. People are worried and that is real. And what else is real is that idle time can keep us focused on the impossible. Idle time allows our minds to drift and sometimes get caught up in the challenge and not the solution. We may not have the solution to the pandemic or the economy, but we can come up with solutions and ideas to help ourselves and our families make the very best of the situation, keep our minds sharp, our bodies in shape, and our faith strong.

Some of the encouragement I have been offering is to stay busy. Avoid idle time as much as possible. When we are busy, we are usually focusing on what is possible, we are seeking that which is possible. Our energy levels and motivation are much higher. When we stay busy, our creativity is at work and our outlook changes for the better. Reading, writing, a new hobby, cooking, a home workout routine, online learning, volunteering in some way, and any other activity you can think of will work. Just stay engaged and as busy as you can. And when you do, you will start to see all the possibilities ahead.

Last week I wrote about quiet time. Quiet time is different than idle time. Quiet time in prayer, or meditation, or being still for a little while is good. Just like playing games and doing puzzles of any kind are both good and stimulating. But playing video games 14 hours a day may not be the best course of action right now. And sitting idle and worrying isn’t productive either.

How about you? Have you gotten caught up in focusing on the challenges and what seems to be impossible? Or are you remaining active in the new stay-at-home life and actively seeking the possible? As always, I would love to hear your story at mnorton@tramazing.com, and when we seek the possible, it really will be a better than good week.

Michael Norton is the grateful CEO of Tramazing.com, a personal and professional coach, and a consultant, trainer, encourager and motivator to businesses of all sizes.

Michael Norton

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