March: Journey of Growth

Mindful Learning, Daily Do-its, and Implementation Intentions

Growing into our ME to WE potential takes mindful learning rather than just transactional learning. Transactional learning focuses on changing our external behaviors, what we say and do, to achieve values-based results. This is a start, but not enough. It isn’t authentic. We end up reverting back to old patterns because our inside thoughts are incongruent with our “forced” behaviors. Mindful learning focuses on the entire chain of learning – centering, thinking, feeling, and behavior. It is proven to bring about sustainable behavior change. We are changing ourselves not just by modifying our behavior. We are changing ourselves from the inside-out.

The journey of growth is really about the “law of little things.”  When we consistently do the little things every single day, the big things start to take care of themselves.

To adopt values-based thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, we must translate our values into little things we do every day. We call these things daily do-its. Daily do-its are daily rituals or habits that we build into the rhythm of our days. Think of this in the same way you would create an exercise routine. Your goal may be to build muscle tone. To make this happen, you need specific exercises you will do on a regular basis. The same approach is needed when it comes to growing into our ME to WE potential.

Take a few minutes to write down a value you’d like to strengthen. Next write some tangible Daily Do-its that turn that value into a mindful learning practice. Example:

Value / Growth Goal Daily Do-It's

Authentically connect with people throughout my days

1. Be Present in Conversations. If I notice mind wandering during a conversation, Then I will bring the focus of my attention back to the person and conversation.

2. Listen without Preparing What I’m Going to Say. If I notice myself preparing my response before the other person finishes talking, Then I will refocus on simply listening to understand.

Daily Do-its can be strengthened by using a powerful technique called implementation intentions. Implementation intentions are scientifically proven to support new habits of mind and behavior. The power is in prescribing what you will do in advance of getting sidetracked from your values-based thinking, feelings, and behaviors. The better habit will come to mind in the midst of being sidetracked allowing you to make the shift from OLD to NEW. The formula for an implementation intention is simple.

IF __________, THEN __________

Daily Do-It for You:

Give mindful learning a try by writing down a few values-based Daily Do-its that you will put into practice as part of your daily routine!

Enjoy the journey of ME to WE growth!

Mary Beth McEuen

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