Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is a recent very public example of someone who ‘lost his way’ as his mind became cluttered with too many issues. He lost perspective, made some poor decisions that were counter to his stated values, and as a result lost much of his popularity and eventually his job.
Perspective or clarity is a wonderful thing. When you have clarity, everything is easier! It is much easier to make decisions. It’s easier to see and deal with problems. With perspective you can see the opportunities coming towards you rather than as they whizz by and out of reach. It’s the people with clarity to know what they want who make the money, purchase the property or settle the business deal.
However when you gain perspective you also need to have the courage to follow your decisions through to action. Most of us are not good at keeping ourselves accountable. Like a river we set our course by the path of least resistance and end up winding all over the place. We baulk at tough situations and try to go round difficulties rather than forge a way through.
What decisions have you made in a moment of clarity but then allowed someone talk you out of? Or have you become scared as you focused on what you might lose? Or did it just feel too difficult when it came to signing? So rather than risk you baulked. And instead of being ready to embrace the opportunity which was so clear a few days ago, you miss it and then it’s gone. The window of opportunity does not stay open for very long.
“Make sure you hold firm in the valley what you saw clearly from the mountain top.” (Unknown)
Someone recently described their work environment in a busy and demanding senior management position as like living in a hurricane. Only on rare occasions when he was able to get time out of his office was this person able to clear his head and start to gain perspective on his work.
However, this man has managed to change things in his thinking and in his work environment. He has delegated tasks he did not need to be doing and freed up his time and more importantly his head space. He has learned to carve out regular time to think, to forward plan and to make sure he has perspective. He is now making great decisions and being recognised for such in his company.
How did he do that? By becoming accountable! Firstly to me as his coach and then, even more importantly, to himself and to his values. Now, even when everything gets extremely busy, my client is able to trust what he saw when things were clear a few hours or days before, and keep his course. He is more effective at work and enjoying a more effective and balanced life.
Who would not want that? It is possible! In fact it is essential if you are going to be successful and enjoy life.
I believe everyone needs both Perspective and Accountability
How do you get clear perspective? And who keeps you accountable?