“Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out.”
~John Wooden

The other day a client was sharing with me his frustration. He was part of launching a new company, and things weren’t going as planned. “We’re not getting the support we need from the parent company,” he said. “They’ve promised us so much, and we’re getting very little. And my people are starting to lose faith.”

I knew my client needed to vent, and so I let him go on. And on. And on. But it started to feel like his going on and on was getting him nowhere, and so I asked him one of my favorite questions. “I know the situation stinks,” I said, “and I know it’s not right and there’s nothing you can do about it. But what can you do about it?”

And that’s when we started brainstorming about what my client could do for his team. And how he could help them see, and handle, the situation differently. His tone of voice, and demeanor changed – they picked up. I heard the enthusiasm and the hope.

“Do you hear how different you sound?” I asked. He acknowledged that he did. “What happened?” I asked.

“I figured out what to do about it,” he answered.

He figured out what to do about the thing that he could do nothing about. He made the best of what he had, and of what was going on. He found ways for his team to take a bit of their power back, so that they felt less like victims of the circumstances, and they could find ways to carve out what would work for them. Even given how things are.

Things work out best when I make the best of how things work out. When I fight against what is, or I complain, I generally get nowhere…except more frustrated and angry. When I take stock of where and how things are, and figure out what I can do with what I’ve got, it gets better.

How do you make the best of how things work out?
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To build a habit of making the best of things, contact Robyn at rmcleod@chatsworthconsulting.com.

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