How often do you ponder over which decision to make, which course of action to pursue? Sometimes it’s confusing, wouldn’t you agree?

Recently I came across a simple formula I think you’ll like. After all, teachers are faced with myriads of decisions on a daily basis. Anything that cuts to the chase and saves us mental energy and time has to be good, don’t you think?

But first let me introduce you to the source of the formula – Glenna Salisbury. Many years ago, when I was in the early stages of the international time management business I now have (of which goalsetting is an important part), a friend introduced me to Chicken Soup for the Soul. (One book became a monster series and a publishing legend, but that’s another story.)

Glenna’s simple three-page story, Glenna’s Dream Book fired my imagination. I won’t spoil it by telling – you’ll find it online or in the book if you’ve got a copy. It’s a great example of what can happen when we become clear about what we want in life. And whilst you’re looking it up, you might like to read some of the creative and fun ways teachers have used it to teach their students goal-setting.

From that time on (and still today) almost every time I talk about goalsetting I reference Glenna and her story. Along the way, this woman on the other side of the world became somewhat of a heroine to me – she’d had difficulties in her life and triumphed through in a seemingly magical way.

So you can imagine my delight when I met Glenna. She’s a well-respected leader in the professional speaking industry and (somewhat to my surprise) I’d been chosen to serve as the 2006/7 World President of the Global Speakers Federation, representing the 10  nations who (at the time) had professional speaking associations. We ended up both speaking at a conference in the UK and hit it off immediately. She’s a gracious, warm and generous-hearted woman – the sort of person who lights up a room by walking into it.

Therefore, when I wanted to interview someone a couple of months ago about goalsetting and finding our purpose in life, I couldn’t think of a better person. Her advice on exactly that topic has already helped probably hundreds of thousands around the world.

Glenna’s wisdom on decision-making
‘One of the things we are challenged with is making decisions. Any decision that moves us out of status quo tends to drain our energy and causes us to lose focus. We don’t think very clearly when it comes to difficult decision making. Instead, we tend to chase our tails. 

For example, we may say
•    My business isn’t working
•    We’re not making enough money
•    I should change jobs or go out and get a job
•    I can’t do that right now
•    I might miss a mortgage payment on my house
•    And before we know it we’re into, “I can’t do that”. 

“Then we get fearful about the perceived risks and so we stay where we are – and then we become negative and frustrated about that. All our attention is going on what we have talked ourselves into believing we can’t do. 

On a personal level we may say the same thing about a relationship “I really need to get out of this relationship but I don’t have the money to go out and live on my own, so I’m stuck here” or “I’m employed somewhere and I don’t like my boss, so I should leave, but I really can’t afford to”.

I have a phrase that helps me. “We are where we are, because we haven’t taken ourselves someplace else”. We tend to blame people – that is our first step for unhappiness. We act as if it’s someone else’s fault, other than ours!

Here’s a formula to help us stop chasing our tails. It’s called the Triple A B C (AAA, B, C). In any decision, no matter what it is, there are only three things you can do:

ALTER your current circumstance
For example, move within a company. Maybe you’re in sales and you’re sick and tired of it, so you move to customer services. You didn’t quit the company – you altered your current experience. 

Ask yourself, “Can I alter my current experience?” If the answer is “No”, then I only have two options left.

Or
AVOID the experience completely

If I live where I live and it’s boiling hot and I don’t like it then I have two options – I can’t alter the weather but I can AVOID the heat and move or I can go to the third A – accept.

Or
ACCEPT (and quit complaining!)

Then, once you’ve done one of the three ‘A’s

BUILD your strength and resilience – emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally.

And CHANGE your perspective – it’s not always going to be like this.

“This process works better than a pros and cons list because that doesn’t help you make a decision – you just move back and forth between the two lists. With this simple method you just need to think clearly about what you’re doing. It causes us then to be clearly energetic and not whining over our current circumstances.”

To find more about Glenna, check out www.glennasalsbury.com. If you’d like to hear the interview (which was many other pearls of wisdom) check out the $1 trial on our GettingAGrip Inner Circle at www.gettingagrip.com/products/membership.asp.

Robyn Pearce CSP (Certified Speaking Professional) is the Time Queen (plus mother of six and grandmother of 12.) She mastered her own time challenges and now helps people around the world overcome theirs. She can show you how to transform your time challenges into high productivity and the life balance you desire.

Enrol for your free Top Time Tips – practical advice every two weeks and you’ll get your own free report “How to Master Time In Only 90 Seconds”, a simple yet powerful diagnostic tool to help you identify your key areas for action. You’ll find it at www.gettingagrip.com