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Monday, January 31, 2011

Switch: #2 Direct the Rider and Follow the Bright Spots

Direct the Rider: Because Riders get overwhelmed by data and analysis, providing them clear, rational choices early determines the kind of action they’ll take. For example, giving specific numbers, dates and times seems to help Riders nail down their thoughts. Most often we call them goals and objectives.

Follow the Bright Spots: Because Riders most often focus much of their early analysis on problems and not solutions, they often tend to get bogged down and misdirected. However, finding bright spots, or solutions-based thinking, gets Riders to succeed much faster. In fact, there’s a whole new branch of solutions-based psychology founded on getting to solutions quicker. The authors also describe the “miracle question”—if a miracle happened overnight, what would be going on the next day that was different? Then, the follow-up question (the Exception Question) asks when in your life did you see a miracle happen? Both questions tee up a vision and bright spot (stepping stones) for the participant. Fascinating that of the 24 most common emotion words in the English language only 6 were positive! We really do have a penchant for finding the worst in every situation and that sets us up to avoid the dark, not approach the light…defense, not offense. Bottom line: don’t try to fix what’s broken, but find a bright spot and replicate it in a new situation.

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