We all get stuck at some point unsure about what choice to make. It might be from a plan that is not working as anticipated or of an underlying fear of the unknown keeping us from making the decision.
When confused, we become mentally paralyzed. We often look at this or that causing a rise in anxiety, fear or frustration. We get stuck because we’re looking at only two options: this or that.
When our minds get fixed in a this-or-that scenario, our creative juices stop. We can get those juices flowing again if we consider how things can be integrated. When you’re stuck in a this-or-that scenario, ask yourself how you could combine the options. By integrating or taking pieces from both options, you find a brand new alternative that works.
A health care administrator looked at the and concept in her life. She was married and spent more and more time in her job than with her family. She knew that she was not in alignment because she wasn’t spending energy on what was really important in her life: her husband and daughter.
One day, she decided to start a home-based business. Initially, she couldn’t imagine how she would do both. She developed a written exit strategy from her day job. Each day she took small steps to grow her home-based business. Each evening she and her daughter would spend time together bonding by working the business.
For a while, she continued with her full-time Administrator position. Her co-workers would make fun of her as she was creating her side business (her “and” solution). By working through her exit strategy, she noticed that she spent quality time with her daughter and replaced her income as an Administrator.
That day came when she walked into the organization and announced her resignation. She was excited for the flexibility that business ownership brought her and improved her work-life balance. She also realized the amount of growing support she received from the other people she met who were also involved in the home products business.
If she never considered this and that, she would have stayed working in a dead-end job. Instead, she built a business and life she loved. Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking they have to take extreme measures by quitting their day job to start up a business. Often times, you can work through the and solution.
Another client was stuck in defining what kind of business she should start. She vacillated between two types of businesses (that had a common link) both using her innate talent of public speaking. At first, she couldn’t see this link. Then, I simply asked her to consider the and solution and suddenly the light bulb went on. She identified the common denominator in both options adding them into her business model which brought her multiple income streams.
The and solution can be applied in many scenarios, including:
- Negotiating a contract where there is a deadlock
- Reaching team consensus
- Making a decision
Where in your life could you use the “and” solution?