A good friend of mine used to joke with me about my ‘slipper moments’ at work and in life. You know the kind of situation; you’d rather be sitting somewhere cosy in your slippers preferably drinking a nice cup of something instead of putting on your work clothes or work face and getting out there. You know when you’ve had a slipper moment kind of day when you realise that you’ve spent the day with your head down at your desk and not spoken to a single person. In contrast, ‘getting out there’ could range from phoning prospective clients, catching up with colleagues, signing up to a webinar to attending a networking event.
Today there is much research on the importance of social wellbeing at work with an emphasis on how we take part in company activities such as lunches out, an evening of bowling or taking part in a company sponsored event. This is all well and good when you are working for a business, but what happens if you are one of the 3.6 million individuals who are self-employed with no employees? Or those people who are taking a career break or are retired? What is the antidote for ‘slipper moments for all of us?
One of the first steps in coaching is to gather the facts. Often what we feel is a problem doesn’t look like an issue, once it’s been openly discussed or written down. So, to assess the extent of your slipper moments here is a simple exercise you can take.
If you’re familiar with the Wheel of Life you can assess the impact of your slipper moments with this simple exercise. First draw a circle and divide it into 8 equal parts with the following headings Career, Money, Health, Friends & Family, Significant Other, Personal Growth, Fun & Recreation, Physical Environment. Or choose your own heading which have greater significance for you right now. Now note under the different Wheel’s headings how your slipper moments are holding you back, slowing you down or causing you to sit out on excitement / experience / fun / challenges.
Now before the gloom sets in as with most coach-able experiences there is an antidote, and in this instance, it’s the ‘stiletto moment’. We’ve all had these moments when we’ve said yes to something before our head has had a chance to say no, or when we have tried something new for the first time solely with the intention of just ‘giving it a go’. This could be a ‘Why Don’t You’ situation where you turn off the TV, and as the kids show used to say, ‘do something less boring instead’.
I had a stiletto moment a few months back when I went along to an evening training event thinking that it would be a great networking opportunity, not realising how inspiring the course or the people would be; so much so I look forward to my Monday nights.
Now go back to your Wheel of Life and consider where you could add maybe two or three stiletto moments into your life. I want you to throw back the covers and see what needs to be changed, consider removing the warmth and protection of a habit or belief and reveal the naked truth. You may want to just take simple steps like arranging to have a virtual coffee with a friend or colleague at a set time, set a timer to remind you to get up and do something different, or choose to sit next to someone on the bus or train who you would normally avoid.
To really commit to making the necessary changes in your life, include a start date and tell at least one other person what your intention is, and you can include me.
To help you with your Wheel of Life assessment you can consider these coaching dictionary definitions:
slipper / slip purrrrr / adj state of comfort or inertia with a tendency to take the easy option
slipper moment / slip purrrr moan ment / adj an instance where you’d rather be doing something else and preferably nothing. A tendency to find fault or moan about the alternative option, resulting in in-action
stiletto / soletgo / adj 1a teetering on the edge of something new b scaling new heights or ability to see from a higher level
stiletto moment / soletgo momentus / adj an instance where you step forward and take action even in light of being on unsteady ground and the prospect of falling over
Don’t wait for New Year to make changes in your life make any day the first step, and let’s make that step in your stilettos.