In his book ‘The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More and Change the Way You Lead Forever’ Michael Bungay Stainer says:
“We often don’t know what we actually want. Even if there’s a first, fast answer, the question ‘but what do you really want?’ will typically stop people in their tracks.”
There’s a great lesson here for those of us ready to learn it. Rather than rushing ahead and taking action after that first, fast answer it is worth us taking the time to think about the second question. It’s a question that not many people give attention to.
When I tell people about my work I describe it as helping people to decide what they want and how to make it happen. The usual ‘fast’ response to that is ‘I want to win the lottery’ but when I follow that with ‘yes but what do you really want?’ a blank look and silence follows.
Those who have already thought about what they really want are likely to be a long way down the road to achieving it. They may need support and may value having a sounding board, someone to challenge them when they get stuck but they have already taken control. Have taken the responsibility, have taken up the challenge and have realised that they play a major role in achieving what they want. There is no waiting around for an unlikely windfall to provide for them.
My Geography teacher at school, Mr Venner, used to remind us before we went into an exam that ‘time spent in reconnaissance is seldom wasted’. So too when it comes to making the best of any situation we find ourselves in.
What do you really want?
Why not give it a try for yourself. Put some time aside and ask yourself ‘What do I want?. Then when you have answered that try ‘but what do I really want?’ When you have the answers to that question you’ll find it much easier to make it happen.
If you’d like some help creating the space to be able to answer those questions join me for 2 hours of one to one coaching time in an Introduction Session
It’s never too late to work out what you really want and then you can start to make it happen.