The Flip is an unexpectedly effective tool you can use to feel good before you act. (See Effectiveness Habit #2: Feel Good. Then Act.) When you notice that you are not feeling good (tension, weightiness, or exhaustion felt in chest, gut, limbs, back, neck etc.) follow these steps.
- Note it. “I am feeling________. I’m thinking about something I do not want.” Feeling bad is a signal that you are focusing on something you don’t want.
- Flip it. “So, what do I want?”
- Stay open. Be willing to be surprised by your answer to #2. It may take 20 seconds or so to get your answer.
- Enjoy. “Ahhhhhhh.” Odd as it may sound, your thought(s) about what you want will feel better that the thoughts about what you don’t want.
- Act. Now do what you are newly inspired to do from this better-feeling point of view.
Example: Worrying about an uncomfortable conversation with a peer. Note: The Flip tool works even though I may not know why I’m feeling bad when I start.
- “I am feeling tense in my gut. I must be thinking about something I do not want.”
- “So, what do I want?”
- “Hmmm.” And after a pause, “I want to feel calm and prepared for my upcoming conversation.”
- “Yes, that feels better.”
- “OK, I’m going to draft my opening sentence and remember that conversations like this always seem to work out well.”
Simple, isn’t it? Too simple? Give it a try and tell me how you do.