Are You Creating or Eliminating?
A client recently shared that he was worried he was using alcohol to relieve his stress. To make sure he wasn’t drinking too much he declared to Donna: “I will not drink more than two beers each night.”
“What do you want to create?” Donna asked. He looked puzzled and said, “I want to eliminate drinking more than two beers every night. I don’t want to drink too much.”
Donna continued, “I hear what you want to avoid and eliminate. What do you want to create?”
After their coaching conversation and some time to reflect, he realized the difference between creating and eliminating. With more insight he said, “At the end of each day, I want to create a special time for me to intentionally relax and savor my favorite beers.”
When he shifted his focus to what he wanted to create—relaxed time at the end of the day—he moved his focus from eliminating to creating.
A few weeks later he reported to Donna that his evenings had been transformed. “I now look forward to my evening relaxation time. I savor one beer, drink it slowly and truly enjoy it. I have also noticed that this time of relaxation and self-care is so nurturing that I have little interest in a second beer.”
Clarifying and focusing on what you want to create, rather than what you want to eliminate, can be your moment of true transformation.
Many people believe they know what they want, only to find out later that they don’t really know. They may think they want to create something, but they often want to get away from, or eliminate, something they don’t want.
There’s a huge difference between creating something you care about versus what you want to eliminate. When focusing on what you want to create, you cultivate a sense of purpose and passion that energizes you. In this example he really cared about creating moments to relax and enjoy his beer. When he declared that as his purpose, everything changed, including relinquishing his fear that he might drink too much.
Focusing on what you want is a more peaceful way to live than trying to manipulate yourself through a pressured situation, focusing on what you think you should eliminate in your life. The human inclination towards change and creativity is best expressed in the creative process of focusing more on what you want to add to your life.
Most people are taught to solve problems as the way to manage life. If you only fix problems without knowing why you are fixing them, you are at risk of living on a treadmill, moving from one problem to the next with little sense of purpose and passion. No wonder so many people feel exhausted and burned out!
Problem solving is not the way to create something new, but it is a way to get rid of something you don’t want. When you have a better idea of what you want to create, where you tap into your purpose and passion, you then consciously seek out the problems that need to be solved so you can create the outcome you want. When you move your focus towards a general idea of what you want to create, you can follow a creative process to get there. But it starts with clarifying the desire, rather than eliminating what scares you, or what you don’t want. This is the way of the Creator, the primary role of TED* (*The Empowerment Dynamic)®.
When you become experienced in creating, more than eliminating, you discover that there are always new places to go. Places that you previously could not imagine as possible become your new reality.
March 4, 2022 @ 1:30 pm
that was very eloquently expressed…
and a fresh approach to understanding the practicality of how it works.
March 4, 2022 @ 3:09 pm
Very illuminating. This subject is not a small one, especially when it comes to the automatic reactions couples have to the lizard brain triggers that hook us when we’re hungry, tired, stressed, or feeling disrespected or disempowered. I look forward to testing this out with a goal of spiritual growth.
We’ve agreed that if “A” blows up, “B” will try to keep this creative goal in mind. “B” will be encouraged to take a deep breath and ask “A” what’s really going on–with curiosity, interest, and love.
You may have given us some golden bread crumbs to follow. Thank you, Donna.
April 4, 2022 @ 11:22 am
We would love to hear how this works out for you. Please do reach out and let us know.