Shifting from push to pull

Do you want to feel more energetic during the day? If so, try shifting from “push” to “pull.” A program called “Positive Intelligence” teaches labeling our actions and thoughts as helpful, or not, in identifying the direction we want to head in. For example, when headed in a negative direction we look at what can be sabotaging or depleting us. Whereas going in a sage direction, meaning that we are wisely guiding ourselves, leads us to be more energized, productive, and positive.

From “Positive Intelligence”:

Research has shown that our reservoir of willpower is exhaustible and can be depleted. In one study, participants who used up their willpower trying to resist unhealthy snacks put in front of them later gave up faster when faced with challenging puzzles. Has this happened to you?

The saboteurs push you into action based on negative emotions like stress, fear of failure, or looking back. This negative push of saboteurs drains your willpower and that has great consequences because it spills over into other things. For example, if you begin your workday using willpower to push yourself to do multiple unhealthy, unpleasant tasks by noon your willpower reservoir might be depleted. Further consequence might be the inability to resist temptations and eat unhealthy food at lunch. Another potential consequence might be impatience with colleagues in an afternoon meeting; moreover, you may not be as resilient in recovering from the stress such as a failure later that day.

An upside – your sage (wise advisor) pulls you into action based on positive emotions such as empathy, curiosity, wonder, creativity, passion, or compelling vision. This pull of the sage based on positive emotions is compelling and doesn’t require willpower to keep going. It’s easier and flows naturally.

Today as you find yourself pushing yourself or others with negative emotions, stop and shift to pull. Make the task or situation more compelling and appealing. Use sage perspectives such as empathy, exploration, or innovative powers to inject something positive into the situation. Turn direction into something you want to do rather than something you have to do. Shifting to pull means you keep your reservoir of willpower full so you can be more patient with others (allowing you to handle unexpected challenges) or to recover from failures faster.