The Ideal Conversation
As you may already know, we ask that our clients journal daily. It’s a critical component to their coaching experience with Frame of Mind Coaching, and vital to exposing what is holding them back from accomplishing great things.
We also provide them with journaling exercises to get their words flowing, enabling us to take a good look at their thinking, perspectives and values across a number of personal and professional environments. Journaling is our not-so-secret weapon for uncovering their limiting beliefs.
One of my favourite journaling exercises is called “Be The Author of Your Story.” In this exercise, I ask clients to create scripts of ideal conversations between themselves and other people. The conversations can be with anyone – someone from the past, someone from the present, someone who has passed away, someone famous, or even someone who they might meet in the future. The most important part of this exercise is that the conversations must be ideal.
A few years ago, a client of mine chose to write an ideal conversation between herself and a member of the Obama administration. She described a conversation in which she was being interviewed as one of the candidates to fill the role of Secretary of State. In her script, she wrote perfectly worded answers to each of the interviewer’s questions, and she made it seem like she was a very qualified candidate.
She ended the conversation with the interviewer saying, “Thank you so much for applying for this position. You are indeed our top running candidate. Once we have completed all of our interviews, we will be in touch.”
She added a note at the bottom of her journal intended for me: “How’s THAT for dreaming big?”
I was dumbfounded.
How was that an ideal conversation?
SHE DIDN’T GIVE HERSELF THE JOB, EVEN IN HER “IDEAL” WORLD!
In her case, we discovered that she often created situations in which she was qualified and worked hard, but fell short of “finishing the deal.” It was a pattern that appeared in many instances in her life – one that she was unnecessarily creating for herself.
This happens time and time again. Many of our clients’ “ideal conversations” are far less than ideal!
That’s because, for some, “ideal” is inconceivable. To them, it’s either not a real place or it’s impossible to actually get to that place. “Ideal” is not somewhere that we naturally go. In fact, some people can’t even fathom what “ideal” would mean for them.
So why do we ask our clients to do this exercise? Because it allows us to tangibly understand if they have any lingering beliefs standing in the way of their success.
Another reason for doing this is that it is virtually impossible for an ideal situation to unfold without the ability to imagine it first. Someone had to imagine what it would be like to land on the moon before it could ever take place. Building the muscle of imagination and conceiving the ideal is a very powerful exercise. It is the seed that allows the impossible to bloom into not only the possible, but into reality.
What would an ideal conversation be like for you? Who would it be with? What would you say? What would they say? Would the conversation really be ideal? What might it tell you about yourself? Would writing it come naturally, or would you struggle to do it?
These questions are incredibly important. If you can’t picture something going perfectly for yourself, it won’t happen.
Figuring out what you really, really want takes effort.
Truly imagining it for yourself takes courage.
And getting there requires some help.
That’s what we’re here for.
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