At times it helps to start small and work your way up to the larger things in life. What are some small things you can notice in life that will pay great dividends?
“Big things have small beginnings.”
From Lawrence of Arabia
Noticing the little things in life can make a big difference in the end.
Change Happens in Relationship and is Behavioral
So far as I can find, all change involves relationships in some way. It makes sense therefore that practically all change involves some type of behavioral modification. In fact, at the root of professional leadership coaching and life coaching is noticing, paying attention to, modifying, or eliminating behaviors.
How would one go about finding these smaller things that can make a real difference in life? Simply recognize they are all around you and permeate your life. They exist in every relationship you have, whether personal or at work.
The first step to identifying them is to “see” them. Once you know what they are it is a simple matter to begin to work on them if you are willing to make the effort, and reap the tremendous promise these small things will hold.
This is where noticing comes into play. To notice is to use your mind and senses to become aware of something. Noticing is the result of focusing your attention in the present moment. What you focus your attention on can be out there in the physical world, or it can be in your mental or emotional worlds.
In other words, noticing is pausing and “looking” at something you normally do not perceive or would allow to pass by. Noticing makes the invisible visible.
Here’s a great question to ask yourself to discern the small things you have not seen before:
What do I notice about __________?
- What do I notice about how I act at work versus home?
- What do I notice about how my wife and I interact?
- What do I notice about my recent life?
- What do I notice about the feelings I’m having about this?
- What do I notice about the way people work at my company?
- What do I notice about how I act around my boss/subordinates/colleagues?
- What do I notice about the pattern of sleep in my life and how it affects my mood?
- What do I notice about the foods I crave?
- What do I notice about the way he said that?
You can add virtually anything you wish to this list. Most of the above will pay great dividends if you go to work on them.
The simple, yet powerful, question of “What do I notice about __________?” can uncover your thoughts and bring the hidden reality to light.
To begin working on any of these items to enhance a behavior, use this simple four-step process:
- Notice (see it)
- Pay attention (what are you doing or not doing, and what is triggering it?)
- Name it (give the behavior a name to make it real)
- Modify or change the behavior (you are now positioned to work on the behavior)
You will find this four-step process further detailed in How to Re-Center Your Life.
Start with one item on the list today. Use your journal to record when you started and the changes that will inevitably come. If you put forth an earnest effort, you will be extremely pleased with the results!
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