I know its a Monday, and Mondays’ wherever you are and whatever you do are what they are, notorious and unpredictable! Well, this short piece may just perhaps help you to ensure that your next Monday doesn’t end up being the one that you are facing now and probably it may just help to bring about a radical change the way you await for the next day to arrive! Certainly I am not suggesting that all days will be Fridays’ or all days are Sundays’ but the shift of your mindset from “Had I” to “What if” is the real game changer! Join me here as we try to understand what this is and how it may turn out to be just the key that you were looking out for to unlock your potential! So here we go!
We have a lot of those strange conversations, (especially when we have that odd free time to ourselves) which start to play within our minds and more often than not they start with, “Had I”, yes, that never ending eternal excuse, reason, fact, fiction, perception, truth- it could be almost any of these and there is nothing right or wrong about this- sure enough as one contemplates, a person will take this route to think and begin to reflect & it is here that getting a right balance of “Had I” thinking becomes critical. If this is not checked in the right time it can unleash chaos of unimaginable proportions! Let me explain!
Remember the last time you got your “me time”, if you have not got one, make an allowance for one now, and then continue to read further! In all probability that “me time” of your’s would have gone into the past and as you started to reflected what worked and what didn’t, almost always you would have ended up saying or thinking-“Had I then done it that way, or that instead of what I did, things could have been different Now! Had that been done, this would have happened and then because of this, that would would have happened! See your thoughts pretty soon, begin to encircle into a tight spiral almost crushing you and burying you into the past, irrespective whether that was a dream or a nightmare and what is unfolding here is- that your flirting with “Had I” is holding you onto a patterned approach of thinking to your life and you are reinforcing belief’s which may no longer serve you or your new realities! This is why most of the people are so scared about their “me time” and always crave for the companionship either with people- irrespective whether that adds value or not, with pets or with those tormenting digital screens- which recently have become far worse the world over than what they were earlier- instead of dissemination of knowledge or puritan information, have ended up becoming nothing more than propaganda tools! A majority of us hence come out more tired, confused and craving for sugar as we are done with our “me time” which when not used aptly ends up being not only waste of time, but starts to chip away slowly but surely whatever remaining resilience and perseverance that you would have built upon to safeguard and move ahead in life! So what do we do? Well, read on!
To begin with, a genuine hand shake with the “Had I” way is not bad, in fact it’s healthy, that’s an opportunity to explore omissions and mistakes and certainly avoid repeating what has gone by, but the problems start as people instead of having a conversation with themselves using this route, start to embrace it and begin to conclude that, because they had not done”ABC” or “XYZ”, they are fated to what they are in the now and this current fate is what will lead them to “PQR” irrespective whether they want to be there or not! This is perhaps the biggest hurdle, danger and problem with the “Had I” approach gone wrong! It not only short changes your present based on the inadequacies of your past, but also seeds in the unwanted and unwarranted thoughts about how vulnerable you are and why you should move ahead in a resigned to fate manner, rather than be a challenger in life! This is the space where majority of us get entrapped for a longer period of our lives and this is called by few others as the “mindset problem- rather the problem of mindset coming through limiting your beliefs- based on the out of control and un-managed “Had I” route! So what’s the cure to this?
Well, there are only two options, either you manage the “Had I” thinking and keep it under check and have it directing you in a purposeful way or do a radical shift in your mindset and move into the “now space”! You see, the whole idea of “Had I” hinges on what has happened to you or has been done by you in the past, but when you move the pivot of your reflective thinking to your present, you make a big shift in mindset and the way to do that is by replacing your “Had I” with “What If” more often! Once you have embraced “What If” in your today, it will empower and propel you to evaluate multiple scenarios for your oncoming tomorrow and the best part is, it starts with the moment you are in- the Now of your time! Let me explain you this very quickly!
Consider you are in one of the usual contemplative “me time”, now with the “Had I” approach you would slip away rather easily- almost dreaming away into your past and then begin to play upon what would have happened had you then done that- in a different manner than what you actually did! But the problem with this approach is that, it will very rarely help you to address something that you are dealing with in the present (unless and until you are on the verge of committing the same mistake again!) and that trip to your past serves you with no value- other then some light free entertainment or revisit to a horror story! The questions of your past don’t and very rarely can provide answers to your present- simply because you are a different person (from the competence and mind part of you) and the contextual settings too would have radically changed!
Now, to this contemplative zen of your “me time” when you decide to approach with the “What If” approach- you are actually expanding the horizons of your thinking pivoting on your now and with a greater chance to transform and shape your tomorrow! The “What If” question, unlike “Had I” doesn’t allow you to dream smoothly or slip away into the softness of your bygone times, rather it forces you really hard to think, think and think in the now of your moment to evaluate the competing approaches and solutions and furthermore extrapolate them ahead to see which of the may serve you more better in the times ahead as well! This powerful and simple shift is what makes”What if” thing so potent and when your “me time” is loaded with this, you are surely going to experience that much needed mindset shit. The shift in mindset originating out of “What if” thinking is powerful, potent and almost always gets you amazing clarity and elasticity for your thinking which serves you all the way along! “What if” thinking forces you to make choices and these choices when acted upon have the power to transform you- to meet the new reality that’s fast approaching you in the future and this future ready approach gives you that edge when it comes to beating the odds that may come your way!
If “Had I” gives you a reckoner to avoid the mistakes of the past, “What if” opens up limitless future possibilities and importantly empowers you to take the challenges head on by aligning your thinking to the new realities coming your way! Each of them have their strengths and place when we want to share our “me time” with either of them, but the more you spend your “me time” around “What If”, the more empowered will you be, for taking actions and leading yourself in the now and the approaching future!
I leave you with these thoughts here, urging you to move on from “Had I” to “What If” and experience a changed you who can lead you and create value for the times ahead, for the ones’ bygone can’t be revisited!
Ciao for now and will be back soon with another one! Stay safe and stay wise!