2021, A year of HOPE?
What is HOPE?
A definition of hope is: “Hope is an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one's life or the world at large.”
I wish all of you a wonderfully prosperous and successful 2021. I am optimistic about the future.
You may ask how one can be optimistic in the midst of the chaos of COVID, economic decline, increasing unemployment and poverty.
Optimism is, I believe, a positive state of mind and having a different outlook on all situations.
I came across the Balance of Power concept at an Action Coach seminar, and realised its power and significance in changing lives (my life included) by turning our thoughts from despair to possibilities and Hope.
I have changed the design for my use, but the principle is the same and can be used in a business situation, in your personal life, in a church environment, in fact anywhere and by everybody individually or in a group.
The diagram shows two different states of mind:
One of despair, fear and no hope
The other a state of reality, opportunity, and hope of a different outcome (future).
The first is represented by a “thumbs down” and is defined by thoughts and activities that imprison you.
This happens when you make excuses for a situation, or you blame it on someone else, or sadly when you justify the situation. I.e. Nobody is finding work.
All these things may be true, but while we remain in this mode of thinking, we will always be imprisoned by the situation, and in a state of despair and anxiety.
Don’t underestimate the power of your thoughts and words.
We become what we speak over and into our lives.
The worst part of this is that when you choose this way of thinking, you are choosing to remain imprisoned.
The second state of mind is represented by a “thumbs up” and indicates an attitude of HOPE.
When you choose to think and behave above the chain, you do 3 things:
You acknowledge the situation with all its issues, but not dwell on it.
You determine to find a solution to the problem, looking for opportunities to take advantage of, speaking positive possibilities over the issue, imagining the solution, and
You undertake to be accountable for the outcomes.
This choice is an action choice, which starts with your thoughts. It is a choice to determine your own solution and not allow outside factors (doubts and negative thoughts) to dictate it for you. In this changing world, you create your own “New Norm”, and you don’t allow the world to create it for you.
When you take responsibility for your future, you will have hope through your plans and activities.
It is wonderful to have the theories and processes, but how to, where to, and when to apply them. (Look out for future blogs that will deal with these issues.)
I believe it is possible to apply this method to any and every issue or problem. For example: The grade 12’s class of 2020.
You have finally completed your school career.
The reality is bleak: you can blame Covid for no jobs, and the government for a bad economy, and late results causing you not to be able to apply for university.
You can excuse yourself for not looking for a job because there aren’t any, and you can justify your lack of effort by saying everyone is battling to find work.
This is one way of looking at the issues, but this way will take you nowhere.
You can, however, acknowledge that universities are full, results are late, businesses are downsizing or closing and lots of jobs are lost.
This is just to frame or sketch the problem that needs a solution.
You can then set out to look for other opportunities, whether they be self-employment, collaborating with others to start a business, simply doing what you can to provide for yourself (and your family), or involving yourself with ways of helping others.
You may think there are no opportunities, but as long as there are people with needs, there are opportunities to satisfy those needs.
When you identify the need, then identify how you can satisfy that need, develop your offering (product or service) and determine a business model to deliver the service or product.
You may believe that you don’t know how, but if you have a desire to help satisfy the needs of others, you can engage with others to determine the how and the business model. You do not have to do it alone. In fact having someone mentor you through the process is advisable.
Now you put your plan into action, and hold yourself accountable for the results you planned.
Like everything in life, preparing yourself for what is required, and having a well-prepared plan of action, will go a long way to having HOPE for success.
A future blog will explore some of the methods of finding opportunities to create your own future.
You can also send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be in contact to share some thoughts and help you decide on your next steps for your future.