We’re often brought up to help others. We learn it at home, in school, and on the job.
We pitch in before we’re asked, rescue, and over-function. Often to our own detriment. But it’s caring and kind, right?
That line between being supportive and being overbearing can get really blurry.
I’m just being helpful!, I’d think. Just pointing out options you haven’t considered! Like I was doing a public service. And wasting energy all the while.
In coaching training, I learned that people are naturally creative, resourceful, and whole. It may sound counter-intuitive for a “coach” but that’s because true coaching is based on powerful questions that elicit the client’s inner guidance, not on giving my own advice.
This translated to a huge ah-ha in my personal life. People can manage their own lives? And if they don’t it’s not on me? What a load off!
Life flows better when I stay on my own side of the street and focus my energy on keeping my side sparkly clean. Then let the other person attend to their side of the street and let the chips fall where they may.
Here are 3 questions that help do this:
- Does it need to be said?
- Does it need to be said now?
- Does it need to be said by me?
Those questions probably reduced my daily word count by good 50%. Ha!
Try it for yourself and see how freeing it can be to stay on your own side of the street. And leave the clean-up of the other side of the street to the other person.
Where are you wasting energy on someone else’s side of the street? What happens when you apply the 3 questions to that situation?
Tell us in the comments below.