You already have all the resources you need to accomplish all the things you want to achieve. Sound too good to be true, doesn't it? Fact is, it is true. You do have all the resources you need. All of them. The questions are:
-how broad is your awareness of these resources
-which resources are we talking of here?
-and, for which needs?
There are countless resources that each individual possesses. It would be nigh impossible and self-defeating to attempt to discuss and highlight even a quarter of these resources in a short discourse as this one.
Let us take a look at a few of the resources you already have to accomplish all the things you want to achieve:
1. Creating Vision
You have probably heard it before, or you may even have said it yourself. “Where there is no vision, the people perish". In the absence of a compelling vision, people tend to be stuck in their present circumstances. They wallow in a ‘comfort zone’ and drift from self-pity to anxiety and anger. Where there is no vision people perish.
Vision is neither wishful thinking, nor is it an expression of hope or a modified form of day-dreaming. Vision is the rare ability of standing in the future and looking at the past as it unfolded. While you are standing there, you make decisions from that ‘future’ (instead of from pressing present circumstances).
For some, vision is the ability to outline a point of convergence related to their personal focus. This means determining and acknowledging ahead of fact, the destination of one's efforts.
I suppose a plausible working definition should be: a portrayal of intended activities in vivid, clear crisp terms that capture human meaning and value.
Visioning (the process of creating a vision) is one of the essential resource that affects your personal time record. Visioning comprises three aspects:
a. human meaning (what will it mean to me)
This one consideration makes sure that the life you are pursuing derives from your own vision. It is to make sure that you are not pursuing someone else's vision of who you should become and where you should be.
It is a tragedy tha many people are living other people's visions. Hopefully you are not one of the many!
b. value (what value will it add)
It is very easy to be engaged in activities that do not add any value to your life. Seeking to provide an answer to this question will help in rooting out ‘idling’ activities.
c. stakeholders (who else is touched by my vision)
There are people who can drive your vision, just as ther are people whose visions you can impact. When you create your vision, think of the impact of your own vision on the visions of others.
Practical considerations when formulating a simple vision include asking:
- what do I need to accomplish
- how do I wish to accomplish it
- by when do I want to accomplish it
- what are my values
- to what degree is there congruency between my vision and my values
For more complicated visioning there will be more involved procedures.
On the whole, the importance of vision as a resource lies in the fact that it acts as a beacon.
2. Your Values
Closely tied to your vision are values.
Values as a resource form a system (not a hierarchy) of what is acceptable and what is deplorable to you.
In order to exploit this resource meaningfully, you must be in a position where you can clarify your values in each of the following areas:
a. personal development
b. work, and
The idea here is that you will only operate resourcefully in areas that are congruent with your values.
The second thing that you must do in order to meaningfully exploit this resource is to identify your value equivalents:
- what do others have to do to meet your expectations
- what do others have to do to violate your values
- how do you judge when you are acting from your values
- how do you judge when you are acting against your values
The main reason you have to learn to operate within the constraints of your values is to bring integrity to your system. As it has been said, your values determine your quality.
3. Your Distinctive Abilities
Distinctive abilities are those abilities that distinguish one individual from the others. Such abilities set you apart from the crowd.
Distinctive abilities set an individual in a class their own, making them non-pareil. They are the opposite of general abilities, and are characterized by:
- they are foundational and broadbased
- they are laterally transferable
You may need to think a little hard to identify some of the distinctive abilities that you possess. They are distinctive because, as I have already stated, they are those abilities that differentiate you from the next person. And they are distinctive because properly acknowledged, they may be create a competitive advantage in any situation. So, what are some of the distinctive abilities you have?
a. unpacking skills
Unpacking skills refer to those skills you call on when you have to decide which skill is needed in which situation. Think about it! When you do an omelet, which skill do you need? When you are typing on a keyboard, which skill do you need? And when you ride a bicycle, which skill do you need?
This may seem trite, but there are certain skills you may want to be consciously competent in. That is, you will need to know exactly the things that you do when you execute the particular skill.
Right now you may wish to do a skills audit
- do I know which skills I have available to me?
- do I know how to acquire skills on the fly?
b. broadening your maps
Okay, you do know what a map is and what it is used for. You also know that the map is not the territory. This is an imperative distinctive ability. Let me show you why.
Imagine you have in your hands a map of an area that you are quite familiar with. You look at the map, and you realize that a lot of what is evident about the area is not reflected in the map. How useful will that map be? To you? And to a total stranger?
Broadening your maps means being able to thoroughly understand the dimensions of your reality, being able to deconstruct those areas of your understanding that are no more relevant, useful or true. It is also means knowing how, where, and when to adjust or replace your maps.
Broadening your maps may ultimately mean developing the courage to discard useless and obsolete maps.
This is one distinctive ability that may be the difference that makes the whole difference.
c. switching resources
The ability to switch resources means just that. Deciding when to replace a resource, which resource to complement and when, which resource to import, as well as when to do the adjusting in your resource allocation.
Switching resources depends on a reliable feedback mechanism which is also a resource you develop.
This ability comes in handy when you come across obstacles in what you are doing. To avoid madness, you switch your resources around so that you may get a different outcome from the one that you do not want.
Haven't you switched resources before? I bet you have!
I am being pretty selective here. I suppose if you can get yourself a piece of paper and a pen you will come up with a long list of distinctive abilities you have. Give yourself some time to do it. They are your resources. You see, you already have all the resources you need to accomplish whatever you want to achieve.
4. Your Motivation
Yes its true. Your motivation is one of also a central resource you have to accomplish all the things you want to achieve. Wait, let us get one thing clear before we handle this resource called motivation.
You may have listened to people who call themselves ‘motivational speakers’. And you may have attended a motivational training workshop. You got motivated there. Good. I want you though to start of thinking of ‘motivation’ in a new way. And it is that ‘Success is not a product of motivation’.
Yes, I know I have just said it. Contrary to some popular wishful thinking, success is not a product of motivation. Rather, it is the other way round.
High Motivation Is A Result of Success. And low motivation is a result of prior failure.
What this means is that repeated success in a particular activity leads [motivates] one to want to do that activity often. While repeated failure at a particular activity leads [demotiavtes] one to want to avoid that activity.
Of what importance is this understanding in positioning yourself optimally? Now that you understand that success creates motivation, and failure destroys it, what's the use?
Motivation is made up of four elements that are essential to know and apply in your quest.
The memories you have about your past are influencers on your motivation. If memories of success are many and strong in your life, then it stands to reason that you will be positively inclined, and well motivated.
Plentiful memories of failure on the other hand will predispose you to strong hesitancies.
It is important therefore to choose with care the memories you need to build into your success package.
Meta-programs are patterns of acting/re-acting which an individual prefers in given situations. They may change across context and time. Some of the meta-programs are:
internal/external: relying on your own opinions versus relying on the opinions of others
towards/away from: moving towards some desired objective versus moving away from an undesirable situation
These meta-programs identify what motivates an individual and are helpful in defining ‘success’ and what makes it happen. What this means for you is that you will find it helpful if you know which meta-programs you use to attain success. And use them!
The meaning an event/experience has for an indvidual will determine how motivated they will/not be to engage in it. Meaning is made up of expectations and criteria.
How much you expect something to occur goes hand in hand with what that particular something means to you. If it is something you are not really attacched to, it does not matter whether it occurs or not. It is meaningless to you.
You attach a particular criterion to something in order for that tihng to have a personal meaning to you. Criterion says: “What makes this meaningful to me", while expectation says: “How possible is this for me?".
What an event, activity or experience means to you will determine how successful you will want to be in relation to that activity. And, your perceived success will in turn influence how motivated you will be to engage in (similar) activities.
So, you can see how motivation is a crucial resource you can use in positioning yourself S. M. A. R. T?
Metaphors are language tools we use to try to understand vague or abstract concepts and experiences.
When we use them, they become frames that help us focus our attention on some aspect of a concept, situation or experience while ignoring other aspects.
Metaphors have an impact on our perceptions and the behaviours that result from these perceptions.
The metaphors that you apply to yourself, others and your situations contain with them your beliefs about reality. They make experience coherent for you.
And becuase they contain beliefs about reality, they tend to be self-fulfilling prophecies.
In order to understand the influence of metaphors on your experience:
- identify your metaphors
- which beliefs are inherent in these metaphors?
- what reality (or even lies) do they create?
- is this the kind of reality that you need to position yourself?
5. Your Mentors
Mentors are trusted and/or experienced advisors. Mentors can be:
a. someone you know personally
b. someone you admire (but do not know personally)
c. some fictional character
There are two major functions a mentor is supposed to perform: help you with the greatest external difficulty you are likely to face, and help you with the greatest internal weakness that might stop you from developing.
External difficulties refer to obstacles, hindrances and situations on the environmental level. The environmental level refers to physical plane of performance. It is filled with both constraints and opportunities.
Internal weaknesses refer to self-referencing inclinations that are self-sabotaging. These come in the form of self-doubt, low self-esteem, inaccurate self-concepts as well as exposure to and experience with the ISG strategy.
This is the strategy that when used, guarantees total failure. You may have used this strategy in the past to generalize failure by assuming it is:
- Internal (focusing on what you did wrong and self-blaming) - Stable (conceiving pattern of failure as unchangeable) - Global (seeing failure in all areas of life)
The internal weaknesses appear on the identity level of experience. They are about how you refer to yourself. They are the weaknesses that you refer to whenever you say: “I am stupid", “I am a donkey", I am mentally wounded", “I will never make it", “I am . . . "
The role of a mentor in helping you manage your external difficulties and internal weaknesses is invaluable. The beautiful thing is that it is easy to access this resource.
These then are the resources you need in order to position yourself SMART wherever you choose to. I hope you have seen that you can never have any excuses. You already have all the resources that you need to accomplish all the things you want to achieve!
Let me table them quickly here for you
1. Creating Vision 2. Your Values 3. Your Distinctive Abilities 4. Your Motivation 5. Your Mentors
And you always thought you did not have any resources!
Now Step Back And Think
a. What do you need to do now
b. What tools do you need
c. Do you have the whole picture
d. Is there a better approach you can choose to use
e. How will your life be enhanced as a result of applying this information
f. Other things you need to know
Ke o agile is NLP Coach and Publisher of In TheZone (http://inthezone.port5.com ), an NLP focused ezine that coaches creating an abundance lifestyle.