I believe we all want to make a difference. Some of us want to make a difference at work. Some are focused on making a difference in the lives of their children. Some want to make a difference on their team. Some want to make a difference in their own lives. Some of us want different results! Some are striving to make a difference in all areas of their lives.
In order to make a difference, to have different results, we must do things differently. If we continue to do things the same way, we’ll continue to get what we are getting.
So where do we begin? How does one go about making the changes necessary to make more of a difference in a specific relationship, a specific area of life, or all areas of life?
It all starts with where you are currently. The first thing to do is start evaluating your results. A key to making a difference is reflection. You must make time to reflect on the results you are getting to determine what you can do differently to make a difference in your outcomes and in the lives of others, as well as your own.
If you think about it, therapists, counselors, and coaches continually get you to reflect. They ask how you felt, what caused you to respond the way you did, what you could’ve done differently, other ways you could’ve interpreted things.
At the end of each day, take a few minutes to reflect. Run through your mind the highlights and lowlights of your day. Did the meetings you attend go as planned? Did you get the desired outcomes? Did you get the support you wanted? Were the attendees attentive? Interested? Responsive?
If the answers to these questions are “yes” then you want to deepen your reflection and ask yourself what you did to create those positive responses. Was it because of your interactions before the meetings? Was it because of your preparation? Did you ask for input during the meetings? Were you acknowledging others? You want to discover all the things you did right so that you can duplicate them in the future for similar results. To exponentially improve your difference making, you can go a step further and ask yourself questions of what you can do to improve on the results you achieved. How can you make the meeting even more energetic? How can you give more recognition? How can you get everyone to participate?
If the answers to the original questions were “no” then you want to reflect on what went wrong. You must not let the poor results go without reflection. You cannot say “I’ll do better next time.” You cannot think the poor results were the fault of the audience. Increased success and making a difference do not happen by chance, rather by intention.
You must reflect and ask the tough questions. Where did I go wrong? Did I try to force my vision on others? Did I fail to ask for their support? Did I fail to ask for their opinions? Did I forget to ask how they think the proposal will affect them and their current duties? You must go a step further and ask yourself, what can I do differently next time? If you cannot figure these answers out yourself, you must find someone you can trust to give you honest feedback. Someone that will share the answers you cannot find on your own.
This type of reflection should be used in every area that you want to make a difference in. Every area of life involves relationships. You’ve heard me say on numerous occasions, the quality of your life is equal to the quality of your relationships.
As you spend time reflecting each night, some of the impactful questions you should ask yourself to become a difference maker include: Who did I help today? With all my interactions, did the people leave feeling better than when we first met? Did I give hope? Did I inspire? Did I show interest in every person I spoke with? Did they feel listened to? Did they feel appreciated? Respected?
Getting to the next level of difference making, you must include questions to help you move forward. As you plan for tomorrow’s interactions, in all areas of life, you should ask yourself, how can I provide inspiration? How can I give hope? How do I show respect? My appreciation? My gratitude? How can I engage others? How can I add value to each person I interact with? How can I make others feel important? How do I make sure they feel heard?
Once you begin to focus on reflection, the value becomes apparent. By evaluating your results, determining what you are doing right as well as areas you can improve, you will begin to see better results. The better you prepare in advance for the outcomes you desire, the bigger difference you will make.
Remember, there is greatness within you. You must choose greatness. It won’t develop on its own. I believe in you!
“Results aren’t based on our level of expectations rather our level of preparation.”
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If you would like assistance with making the most of your reflections, I can help you. We can meet by phone, on Zoom, or in a place you deem safe with social distancing. Whether you choose me or someone else, a coach will expedite your results.
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Photo credit to www.pixabay.com/Mircealancu
Published by Bryan M. Balch, Results Coach
Helping Individuals and Businesses Achieve Desired Results