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If You’re Stuck, Ask Yourself a Different Question

"Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.” ~ Albert Einstein

A friend and I were brainstorming earlier this week about how we’d fallen behind on getting some writing done, and why we were having such a difficult time picking it back up. Some of the questions that kept popping up were:

  • Why can’t I just knock this out like I used to?

  • Where did the creativity go?

  • Why is this topic giving me so much trouble?

The same questions I’d been asking myself for weeks! We all know the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results. I guess that made me a practicing insane person because I was asking myself the same questions, yet expecting different answers! It was time to shift my thoughts on this and ask myself a different question.

I decided that instead of putting the pressure on myself to figure out what was wrong, I’d ask what I am doing well right now. Well, that answer was easy! I have been giving talks lately and they have all been very well received. So, clearly, I’m good at talking!

And then it hit me. Why is it that “writer’s block” is a thing, but “talker’s block” really isn’t? Maybe because we all don’t seem to have too much trouble with talking (and I don’t mean public speaking here, I just mean plain talking; with friends, with yourself, whatever).

So, if talking is easy, my next question then became, “Can I do something easy like talking to address my current problem?”. You bet I can! On the drive home, I took out my phone and began recording myself just talking in the car about what I wanted to say about the topic I was stuck on.

Here’s the amazing part: when I got home, I sat down and wrote out that workshop and I didn’t even need to play back my recording. Somehow, taking the topic from a “hard” skill like writing, and transferring it to an “easy” skill like talking opened the gate.

The point of all this? If you are facing a task that you can’t seem to get started on, or can’t finish, instead of focusing on all of the questions around why not, try asking yourself a different question and you might just find a path to completion!

Trish Cody is a speaker and coach whose work is focused on raising awareness of how our default tendencies and beliefs predict our capacity for success, and how those defaults can be adjusted to create more positive results. As a Certified Professional Coach and Energy Leadership Master Practitioner, Trish works with clients to uncover their core values and beliefs, and learn a process of leading energy to attract positivity and success naturally.

All rights reserved; Trish Cody Coaching LLC; 2015

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