I know that when I’m anticipating the successful completion of a project, when I’m anticipating how smooth an upcoming conversation will be, or when I’m anticipating an abundant financial year, life feels good!
Conversely, anxiety is provoked whenever I fall into the trap of ruminating about something not working out well. For example, as I move toward the pointy end of a project, if I imagine that I won’t get it done on time, or if I imagine how rough it’ll be trying to get another person to agree with my argument, my anxiety elevates. Life feels way too stressful when I imagine that I’m going to fail!
Seth Godin said it this way:
“If we define anxiety as experiencing failure in advance, we can also understand its antonym, anticipation.
When you work with anticipation, you will highlight the highs….
If you work with anxiety, on the other hand, you’ll be covering the possible lost bets, you’ll be insuring against disaster and most of all, building deniability into everything you do. When you work under the cloud of anxiety, the best strategy is to play it safe, because if (when!) it fails, you’ll be blameless.
Not only is it more fun to work with anticipation, it’s often a self-fulfilling point of view.”
Great leaders are optimistic and energetic, and have a sense that life is good, don’t they?
And the reverse applies.
Your Leadership Call To Action
Where are you ruminating on something not working out well?
Will you switch from working under a cloud of anxiety to working with anticipation about how you’ll create an outcome that you’re thrilled with?
I want you to do that right now and watch the anxiety and stress melt away.
Doesn’t life feel good?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Carolyn Stevens has worked with leaders for more than 25-years—hundreds of them.
She’s supported leader after leader (including those who previously struggled to confront the difficult, let alone persuasively deal with the it) flourish—and become confident, courageous and impressively influential.
Carolyn is authentic and results-oriented. She draws on an eclectic array of approaches, tools and techniques to suit the situation.