My Wallet is locked in my Fridge...

1 Feb 2020

... So with a packet of pate in one hand I went downstairs to Security in the YMCA and asked to be let in to my communal kitchen. As he let me in I said to him "Do you want a laugh?" and he watched as I unlocked the fridge and swapped the pate in my hand for the wallet in the fridge. One of my rabid dogs chasing its own tail had been front and centre in my mind.

This is a process thing.

I was lucky enough to have Sir Chris Hoy present on how an ordinary guy like him can achieve Olympic gold. "If you want to dream, dream big." Okay – nothing new. "Break down how you are going to get there into achievable steps." Yup – heard that, doesn't help me. "To execute on achieving each step you need a process. And you need to focus on the process not the outcome." Now THAT is something new. My responsibility is to choose, execute and tweak the process and the result takes care of themselves.

Sir Chris goes on "When you suffer from FUD (Fear Uncertainty Doubt) focus on the process."

Whenever I think of the outcome I hear the voices in my head saying "not good enough" "don't make me laugh" because I have to continue the criticism of other people in my life and especially my childhood, of any effort I make even before the outcome is apparent. Focussing on the process liberates me from that litany of self-criticism.

And "When you fail, then change and improve the process."

So I decided to hydrate in the morning drinking two pints of water with half a lemon squeezed in each pint. I went to do that after porridge and it was a lot harder than first thing when I get up before porridge. A small improvement to my morning process. Drink lemony water first.

I am all about tweaking my processes to realise the outcome I want.

I think process is the "what" and "how" I do anything. I also know it as "being present in the moment" – yes but present with the purpose of the goal and the plan. I also know it as "behavioural activation" in CBT where the goal is to not be depressed.

So what about that wallet? My new process is to be present in the moment as I go to the kitchen, not because I don't want to lock my wallet in the fridge again, but because that is what I have decided is my process, and I am focussing on that process and ignoring the outcome (and the critical voices). It should also help keep the wallet in my pocket and pate in the fridge, but will also bring other benefits.

The security guard laughed when he saw my chilled wallet in the shelf in the fridge door. I hope it put a smile on your face too.


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