Resistance & Rethinking

Have you lost your mojo for a project that you started in the New Year?  I have been challenged to get back into a flow on many projects that I started including writing this post! The challenge shows up as resistance and I fight the urge to put my head down and push through it or to get distracted and focus elsewhere. And while resistance can be a nuisance, it is something almost all of us will inevitably feel from time to time.

Rather than trying to fight it, perhaps you can see resistance as an opportunity to pick your head up, look around and pay attention. I would encourage you to pause and get curious. Perhaps redoubling your efforts is the correct course of action, but what if you could take a different path?  

What if you tried rethinking? As Adam Grant says in his new book, Think Again, it is important to reconsider our best laid plans, long-held beliefs, expert knowledge and well-worm strategies. This is not easy as our beliefs and knowledge help create the foundation of our identity, status and standing in the world. Adam suggests that we pivot from our identity being tied to our beliefs to seeing our identity as an extension of our values.  Humans make decisions based on values and therefore this is an interesting pivot.  If we base our identity on our values, we will make decisions in alignment with our identity and not be swayed as much by our long-standing and potentially erroneous beliefs.  

Rethinking is a skill set and a mindset. Here are some tips from Adam’s new book that help to you get started:

  1. Think like a scientist – Here is how Adam describes this way of thinking, “favor humility over pride and curiosity over conviction. Listen to the ideas that make you think hard, not just the ones that make you feel good. And surround yourself with the people who can challenge your process, not just the ones who agree with your conclusion. 
  2. Admit what you don’t know.
  3. Define your identity in terms of values not beliefs or opinions.
  4. Seek alternative information.
  5. Stop being afraid of being wrong…Use being wrong as a pathway to get curious!

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