Framework for Success: Moving from “Being Stuck” to “On Track”
(this is a transcript of the video.. so please view the video for a full understanding of the text below)
In today’s episode I want to share about something that I find absolutely useful especially if you are a coach, consultant or even if you are a business owner or CEO. You can use this, what I call a framework for change. There are frameworks, hundreds of frameworks out there that you can use for analysing & unpacking situations, strength assessment, competition analysis etc.
Now today’s framework is something highly useful especially when you find yourself to be in a state where things need to move but you are not sure where things need to go. Now this framework has been derived way back from the industrial era. You know way back in the industrial era where workers would go into factories and they would put in hours and hours of work doing heavy labor such as hitting hammers on hard iron etc. Now there was a consultant who was brought in to actually improve the productivity and efficiency of the production lines. Now his background interestingly enough was more from a body movement, body dancing analysis. What he noticed was that a lot of the workers were getting absolutely exhausted and by the end of the day, the productivity would drop dramatically. What he found out was that if he changed the sequence of how these workers were actually swinging the hammer, the productivity increased by about forty percent. So he said, “Wow! It’s part of the movement, as opposed to just hitting at it straight”. He said, “Why don’t we allow the workers to actually take the hammer and let it just swing around and then let use that motion to actually hit it back.”
In that process what he just introduced was a cycle of relaxation and rejuvenation. And that itself started becoming the classic motion of hitting hammers onto hard iron. Right? So there was a massive massive change in the industrial era to get forty percent out of this workers whose lifespan was considered to be the that significantly short especially if you are working day in day out. Working eight to ten hours a day and then to get forty percent on top and to increase the longevity of your workers…that was considered massive.
So what I am about to share with you is a framework that you can use in your life and in your business to analyze and see where things are at and it’s a very simple framework but it’s highly useful. So pay attention.
One of the first things that we look at when I look at a framework is, it’s a simple four by four matrix right? As all good frameworks are and on one of the axis we look at whether whatever you are doing, is that workable? Or is it unworkable? And is this action? Or is it in action? Let me explain to you what each of these means.
So essentially, whatever is going on in your system be it in your business or in your life. Is this sustainable? Is it workable?
If you kept doing this on and on Is it sustainable? Or is it unworkable? Because unworkable situations are usually toxic in the long run. It’s not sustainable and there comes a point at which everything fails. So we start looking at what ever is going on as workable or unworkable? And the second thing is, Is there action happening? Or is there nothing happening in that space?
Now, most of the time when there is no action happening and you are sitting in an unworkable space, we call this as the Stuck State. Usually when you are stuck you are stuck right? There is no action you cannot take any action. it’s unworkable because how long can you remain stuck? It’s just stagnation at that point.
The next part that we look at is, what if there is action happening but it’s unworkable action? This is the classic entrepreneurial quagmire known as ‘Spinning the Wheels’. How often have you found yourself or someone else in business, they keep taking action, they keep taking action and they are trying to move things around but it’s just unworkable action. So you might say, “Oh Wow! That’s enlightening”. So what is a workable action but that is in action actually? This is precisely what we look at from the earlier example. In that moment of hitting the hammer, allowing the rejuvenation process to happen so that you regain some of your energy and you get back into action. That is called physically a simple Vacation.
We all take a break. And then the final one we have is action and is workable, what we call it is Progress. This is what we want most of the time.
Now, far too often. People try to move. If you are in a stuck state, far too often people try to actually move from stuck to progress straight away. And that usually doesn’t work. Usually the way it works is that effectively you move yourself from a stuck state into relaxation. Stop first, stop whatever you are doing. Right? Don’t make things work by getting stuck and doing the things that are not really working. And from the stuck state, generally it’s easier when you take a step back to move into a state of progress. So whenever you are stuck, if you are stuck, take a moment too see, how can I move myself from a spirit of being stuck into a spirit of vacation? How can I take a step back and actually understand, analyze what’s really going on?
And sometimes that’s all you need. Maybe a weekend getaway or spend time with your friends and just have a chat about getting an external perspective on it. What’s going on in your system? That’s one. The second thing people do is either they try to go from spinning the wheels into progress state. That usually doesn’t work either normally, as that also requires you to stop whatever you are doing for a moment. As a pause to just move in this direction here. First, you should move into a little bit of a relaxation rejuvenation space.
Remember, that action, inaction they are all cycles that feed each other. To get maximum action, you need enough momentum. To get enough momentum you need time. Right? So this is classically the same example of, how can you move from spinning the wheels? Move into a state of rejuvenation and getting the right action in and from there, you can launch full on into a state of progress. Right?
So, this is something that I use personally when I find myself either moving into or sliding into unworkable unsustainable states. Where I am feeling that, “Ah… Why am I not taking the right action? What’s going on here?”. And this is when I start asking myself, is this sustainable? If you are able to sustain? then that cycle feeds itself and it’s a positive upward cycle that keeps helping you grow. If what you are doing is something that is not going to sustain itself? Then you are in a toxic cycle.
Sooner or later, like all things in nature. It has an end point, it’s going to come back and it’s going to reset everything for you and usually that reset can be quite heavy. So ask yourself, review your actions and activities in your business, in your life to see – Are you spinning the wheels? Are you doing unworkable actions or are you doing workable actions? So the key here is to always move towards the state of progress but knowing what actions do you need to take that will move you from the states and where you should not slide back into?
So, I hope you found this useful. Let me know how you found it and where you were stuck or spinning your wheels in your life or in your business. And what are hard moments you’ve had and share it with me. it would be great to hear from you. So if you are experiencing this in your business unconsciously, let’s have a chat and find out where we can actually maximize your actions to get the best progress out for you. Thanks.