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   By: Brad Swift

I have certain parameters for what is truth for me. When I hear something new, something that may stretch me a bit, I put it through my "truth sieve." I have to sift through it to make sure it is true for me.

My desire is to be open to new ideas but still to stay within the boundaries of what is true for me. As a coach, how do I find a balance between being open to new ideas and not crossing over into what is not true for me?

What a great question. Here's one way to stay in balance. Since you're a coach it should be a good fit for you. Listen to whatever is said with your 'coaching ears' on. What I mean by that is to listen to try on what you hear. To truly try it on to see what you can learn that will in some way enhance your life. This is a combination of keeping a 'beginners mind' of openness while also listening for those 'nugget of gold' insights that can contribute in some way to your life.

If you think of each conversation you're in as a mound of dirt that has been 'seeded' with nuggets of gold insights, then your job is to sift through the dirt until you uncover the gold. Whatever doesn't fit for you, simply let it go, and don't get stuck with it. One easy way to get stuck with something that someone says it to realize it doesn't match for you, so you end up making the person wrong and discounting everything they say. When you do that, you're no longer listening with your 'coaching ears' on.

Now, here's a coaching assignment to take these insights and put them in action:

Pick 3 conversations this week and listen to them with your 'coaching ears' on. At the end of the conversation, write down at least one insight you gleaned from it. From this list of insights from the various conversations pick at least one insight and take some action that will help you integrate the insight into your life.

©2005 Brad Swift of Life On Purpose Institute, Inc. This article can be reprinted freely online, as long as the entire article and this resource box are included.

Dr. Brad Swift founded Life On Purpose Institute in 1996 with the vision of creating a World On Purpose by assisting people like yourself to clarify their life purpose & live true to it. Determine how on or off purpose your life is with the fun & insightful Self Test at: Inspire yourself with a subscription to Purposeful Pondering Ezine:

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