“There are no wrong turns, only unexpected paths.”
~ Mark Nepo

I’ve noticed a pattern in my coaching sessions recently. Many, if not all, of my clients seem to need reassurance for a choice that they’ve made.

“What if it’s the wrong decision?” they ask me. “How will I pick up the pieces for my team (my boss, myself, my family)?”

As I often do, I suggest a shift in their perspective. Because I’ve found, over the years, that thinking – or knowing, or fearing – something is the “wrong” choice generally sets us up for less than spectacular results. In fact, I’ve noticed that how we view the decision often has more impact on results than the decision itself. I’ve also noticed that very few of my clients’ (or friends, or family, or self) decisions turn out to be “wrong” and disastrous in retrospect. They often simply open up a new path or a new approach or way to think things through.

The client who takes the “wrong” job (or gives up the “right” one) eventually finds he’s developed new skills and taken on a new viewpoint. Or that her team has grown, perhaps because she “wrongly” picked a new marketing approach or supported a new venture.

And even if these fairytale endings don’t materialize for everyone, when you simply allow yourself to walk away from a definition of right and wrong, and the fear that you’ve messed things up by your decision, you open yourself up to opportunities and learnings – unexpected paths – that you may not have ever imagined, much less experienced.

When you silence – or at least soften – the critical voice that second-guesses your decisions, you give yourself and others a chance to learn and grow. A chance to experience. A chance to potentially try something new and see something differently.

A chance to walk an unexpected path.

How have you walked an unexpected path? Click here to share.

If you enjoyed this post, you can read more like it in our book, The Power of Thoughtful Leadership: 101 Minutes To Being the Leader You Want To Be, available on Amazon.

If you want to silence the “rights” and “wrongs,” contact Lisa at lkohn@chatsworthconsulting.com.

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