In this blog I will help you identify how you avoid stuff, and show you the big impact it has on your happiness and relationships. Especially when it comes to avoiding having difficult conversations with your young adult kids.
We all have thought patterns that hold us back or don’t serve us. Shirzad Chamine from Positive Intelligence calls those thought patterns Saboteurs and categorises those in different areas, such as Judge, Stickler, Hyper-Achiever, and more.
One of the Saboteurs I’d like to focus on here is The Avoider.
The Avoider Saboteur talks us out of doing things that may be or feel unpleasant. It is the voice in our heads that says, "You can call those clients tomorrow" or, "What's the rush? That thing isn't so important anyway".
Are you and Avoider?
Take a moment to stop and think about it right now.
Are you the type of person that can't seem to ever tick everything off your to do list?
What is on your list that has been there for longer than it should be?
What is it about that thing that is keeping you from getting around to it?
Is it the trash that has piled up in your car, and you think I don't have time to take it all out now, or my hands are already full and I'll do it next time? Or is it something bigger like a doctor's appointment, that mammogram, or dentist appointment you just can't take the five minutes to call and schedule??
Or is it something even bigger that isn't on your to do list, but nagging you in the background? Like talking to your child about getting a job or or that it's time for them to move out? Do you sit and suffer in silence eventually snapping at others or beating yourself up for not doing the thing?? Do you feel paralyzed at the thought of doing something that will cause someone else pain or anger them?
Those of us who aren't type A personalities most likely procrastinate on the unpleasant tasks, and everyone no matter which personality type you are may find yourself skirting around the difficult conversations with your young adult child or work colleague. Some of the lies you tell yourself when you avoid these conversations may be that you are sparing their feelings, that it's good to be flexible, or that you can have that conversation later.
My Avoider Story
When my eldest child dropped out of college and came home, I kept expecting him to go get a job. Then when he didn't, I started trying to ask him what his plans were in a manner that didn't express what I really wanted him to do, which was to get a job asap! I was trying to not pressure him and avoid any hurt feelings or resentment towards me for pushing him. My avoiding laying out the ground rules for him turned me to festering and growing resentful of him.
How was he to know?
I may have been sparing his feelings or kidding myself about keeping the peace between us, but it certainly didn't resolve the issue, it made it much worse. We basically didn't speak and it was hard to be in the house with him as we tip toed around each other.
Finally, I ran into a friend who had a job for him. I went home and just told my son I found him a job. I expected resistance because of all the angst I was feeling. He took the interview and started the next day without a peep. I remember thinking, why didn't I just flat out tell him to get a job in the first place??
I have to thank my son because my difficulties with him led me into my coaching specialty of helping other parents of young adult kids travers the tumultuous years between 15-25. Last year I enrolled in a supplementary coaching course with Positive Intelligence to enhance my coaching practice, and discovered that I have an Avoider Saboteur. This is the voice in my head that tells me keeping the peace, being flexible, sparing other's feelings, it's not a big deal to skip a step, or I can do it later are ways to help people.
Really they are ways that I avoid being direct and doing the uncomfortable thing!
Ultimately when I give in to the voice of the Avoider Saboteur, like I did with my son, I end up paying a bigger price than if I had faced the thing I'm trying to avoid head on. My son has found his way and will be moving to Texas next week. I am so thankful that I found the tools to quiet the Saboteur voice and create a loving and happy relationship with him before he left.
Would you like to lead a happier life?
Positive Intelligence has made a huge difference in how I operate in the world. Conflict is easily turned into an open and blameless conversation, and I am much less stressed. It has given me the tools to catch the sneaky Avoider Saboteur among others, and shift to living a much happier life.
This has been such a great tool for my coaching clients that I have partnered with Positive Intelligence and started leading their 6 week course. (Find out more about them on their website below)
Because of my partnership with them I have a discount which I am passing on to my clients and readers.
I now am helping clients identify what the negative voices in their heads are, how these voices sabotage their lives, and giving them tools to quiet them and relieve the stress and anxiety these saboteurs cause.
"Will you join me?"
My next 6 week session starts on March 6.
Email me here to sign up. firstname.lastname@example.org (Receive $50 off when you mention "How to Stop Avoiding Stuff")
For more information on Positive Intelligence click below.
To book a call with me go to my calendar below.