Ep #4: How to Solve ANY Problem

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” ~ Maya Angelou

Okay, ladies. Are you ready to learn the framework that can help you solve, literally, any problem you may be experiencing? Yes, I really do mean ANY problem. And no, your problems are not the exception!

On today’s episode, I am going to introduce you to the Model, a crazy practical tool designed by life coach genius Brooke Castillo to help us look at our circumstances, thoughts, feelings, actions, and results. In other words, it’s a way to look at our lives, and the results we are getting in our lives, and understand not only why we are getting those results, but how to change them.

This episode may challenge your idea of the way to solve your problems, but I can tell you that once you grasp this concept and learn to employ it every day, you will begin to see a dramatic shift in your experience of life. You’ll learn how accepting responsibility for your issues frees you to be in total control of your happiness and success and why that’s a good thing!

To help you with this process of solving ANY problem that comes up, I created a great resource just for you. Click Here to download this FREE worksheet that will help you become aware of the thoughts you are thinking and how they may be holding you back from the life you want. 

What You'll Learn From This Episode

  • An introduction to the Model.
  • Why filtering your problems through the Model may not be what you imagine problem-solving to look like.
  • Why does blame quickly turns to pain much of the time?
  • The importance of managing our minds in order to get exactly what we want out of life.
  • The first thing we need to embrace when accepting responsibility for what we create.
  • A little homework assignment that will help you begin to see how your thoughts affect your results.

Featured On The Show

Full Episode Transcript

You are listening to The Design You Podcast with Tobi Fairley, episode number four.

Welcome to The Design You Podcast, a show where interior designers and creatives learn to say no to busy and say yes to more health, wealth, and joy. Here is your host, Tobi Fairley.

Hello there, my beautiful friends and moms and entrepreneurs. How’s your life this week? Is it crazy? Well, mine’s a little crazy because this is the week of spring furniture market in North Carolina for me. So I’m going to be showing all my fabulous new furniture designs with Woodbridge Furniture and that means I have to leave home and leave my family and have a short work week for real work, and then I go work in North Carolina, so it’s still work.

But just different work, and I know you know how that feels, like when you’re travelling and everything feels upside down, and that’s okay, it’ll all be back to normal next week, but it’s super exciting. And I hope you’re doing something exciting this week too. So let’s talk about something that I think is exciting. Today we’re going to talk about how to solve any problem, and I mean any problem. Seriously y’all, how to solve any problem.

Haven’t you wanted to know that forever? For like, your whole life? Well, it really works. So I had the amazing privilege of learning life coaching last year from a genius woman, I mean, just total genius, named Brooke Castillo. And it completely changed my life, and I mean, of all the books and all the seminars and all the programs and education I’ve ever gotten – and I’ve gotten a lot, I mean I have two undergraduate degrees and an MBA and a million seminars under my belt, and I’m telling you, The Life Coach School coaching program, which was an intense, like, really intense six day program challenged me and changed me more than anything I’ve ever, ever, ever done.

Okay, so rave reviews, testimonial for Brooke Castillo right there. But here’s the thing. So the one thing, the most important thing that I learned from Brooke’s training is this really crazy practical tool that I now use multiple times a day, and it’s something Brooke created and it’s called The Model.

And so I’m going to introduce you to The Model today because it literally solves any problem, and there are no exceptions, period. And even though you’re going to want to think that you’re the exception and your problems are the exception, they aren’t. Nobody’s ever the exception, okay?

So what is The Model? Well, The Model is a framework really that like a little written down pen and ink framework, I guess you can type it too, that she created or designed to help us look at our circumstances, our thoughts, our feelings, our actions, and our results. So she didn’t create the concept about thoughts and feelings and actions and results and how they all come from a circumstance or about a circumstance.

Those ideas have been around for years with other thought leaders and people that do a lot of mind work. But Brooke created the framework. So in other words, she gave us a way to look at our lives and the results we’re getting in our lives and understanding not only why we’re getting our results but how to change our results if we don’t like what we’re getting.

So if I told you that I had the key to understanding why you may not be getting what you want in your life and how to change that, would that be valuable to you? Duh, Tobi, of course it would be valuable. Like, that’s the holy grail, like, that’s the most important thing that I could ever learn, right? The key to all my problems.

So don’t we all want to know exactly how to get what we want in life so we can create the life and the job and the family and the money and the body and anything else that we say we want? Well, I have that for you and it’s called The Model.

So as I said before, it’s the way to solve any problem you have in your life, but here’s the deal. It may not be the way you imagined solving those problems. So let’s dig into The Model and let’s see how it works and why it solves any problem. So first, let’s start to take a look at our lives and why we think we don’t already have what we say we want.

The reason most of us don’t have it is because we blame our circumstances, right? So we would usually say or think that the reason we don’t have what we want is because of our past, or because of our family, or because of where we live or our job, or maybe our parents, our industry that we work in, possibly our health, our metabolism, maybe it’s our body type, our appetite, our clients, our employees, our spouses, our kids, the government, the current president, the former president, or some other person or thing that we blame all our problems on, right?

So let’s be clear here. When we blame these things, we are simultaneously removing any responsibility from ourselves now, aren’t we? Uh oh, therein lies the problem. So the minute we blame our circumstances, we’re also assuming the victim role, and we’re making them think we’re blaming our villain. And I get it, sometimes it feels good to blame somebody else or even to hate someone else or to be really, really, really mad at someone else.

But it doesn’t feel good long term. It may relieve some stress for a minute but blaming others or hating others does not feel good long term. So often, blame pretty quickly turns into a lot of pain most of the time, right? Because when we’re the victim, we give complete control of our lives and our emotions to those other people or things, a.k.a the villain.

And often, those villains are the absolute last things or people on this planet that we would want to delegate our happiness and our success to now, aren’t they? So think about that for a minute. Who are you giving power over your happiness and success? Because you might not like that villain that you realize is in control of your emotions, okay?

So let that sink in for a minute. It’s like, wow, very, very deep thoughts, right? So take a deep breath for just a second. Okay, let that sink in, that we’re delegating the control of our emotions to the very people and things we don’t want to.

Okay, so what I’m telling you is that you are believing that your circumstances, whatever they are, are responsible for where you are in your life today and whether any of that will ever change in the future is dependent on those circumstances changing, right? Not dependent on you because you’ve given that control over to your circumstances.

Now, if that were the truth, if the circumstances were truly in control, then life would be pretty miserable, right? We would feel helpless and we’d feel hopeless, and again, we’d just feel that weight of the fact that we would have zero control over our destiny. And a lot of people feel that way already, and you may feel that way too.

Feeling like you have no control over your life can make you feel a lot of things like depression or anger. And you can see that feeling that way might make us want to do something like buffer or dull those feelings with things like food or alcohol or drugs or Facebook or porn or something else that you numb yourself with so you don’t have to feel like something else is in control over your life but you.

So basically, we give ourselves a big old dopamine hit with something. For me it was always food, so that we feel way better about that fact that we have no control over our life. Sounds pretty much like real life, doesn’t it? It does to me for sure, but here’s the thing. I started to realize that I absolutely have control, thanks to Brooke’s teachings and The Model.

So yes, so far today, you’re thinking, “You’ve done it again, Tobi, you’ve started us off with yet another upbeat podcast.” But as usual, I deliver us from the pain that we’re talking about with a way out, and that’s what we’re going to do today. So hang with me and let me tell you about how we can go from being the victim to being in control and getting results that we want.

So I’m here to tell you this: believing that you’re the victim of your circumstance is a complete lie. And that to me is the most exciting and life changing information that I have ever heard in all of my 46 years. Thank you, Brooke Castillo. Thank you, lord, thank you everybody that I have this information.

So if our circumstances aren’t responsible for our results in life, thank goodness, then what is? Well, whether you like this or not, it’s our thoughts. Our thoughts about our circumstance or circumstances cause our feelings, and ultimately lead us to our results. But before you panic, realizing that responsibility for your life and your success or the lack of responsibility that you’ve been taking all lies squarely on your shoulders is great news.

I want you to realize that this should be absolutely liberating to you. For a minute it feels heavy like, “Ugh, one more thing I have to do,” but at least you can do something. You’re in control, and that is fantastic news. So I don’t know about you, but I’m a person who often does everything myself. I just think, if I want it done right, I’ll do it myself.

And in fact, I’ve had to unlearn this in many circumstances so I could learn to be a better delegator both at work and in other areas of my life. But for this situation, on this topic of being responsible for your own journey, your own joy, your own success, your own destiny, if you’re a believer that you might as well handle things yourself anyway to get the results you want, then this should also be for you, the best news you have ever heard, okay?

So yes, you and only you are in charge of how you think and how you feel and how you act and what results you get in your life. Hallelujah. Okay, so let’s not beat the dead horse anymore, we get it. We’re in control. So I know while I’m having this full on celebration over here about this great news, you might still be letting this sink in, and like, maybe not even buying into it all the way.

So I get that. So let me dig into this a bit more and show you how The Model works so you can start to get your mind around this concept, literally, because it’s all about the mind. The Model is a tool for managing our minds. So what about our minds?

Well, you know that super computer there inside your skull? Well, it’s just like we are with, say, our laptops, or apps, or computer programs that we have on our computers at home, our laptops, we aren’t using them to their full potential, and it’s the same thing with our brain.

We’re probably using maybe 10% of its capabilities, which is kind of what the statistics show that most people are using with their technology or their computer programs. We just scratch the surface of it, right? And so I would argue that that is the very same thing we do with our brains, that built-in computer that we have as our minds.

And so I believe that our minds are our single most valuable asset. So let’s learn how to manage them to get exactly what we want in our life, and The Model is going to help us do that. So back to The Model and the components of The Model.

It’s got five parts, and let’s define all those pieces. First there are circumstances, so what are circumstances? Well, they are all the facts in our lives. They’re things that you might think about it as things that can be proven in a court of law, or things that if we had a whole bunch of people, like if we had a hundred people or a thousand people together, we would all agree that these are the facts.

So our circumstances are things that we can’t control, and they include other people, what other people do and say, they include things like our past because we can’t change our past, it’s out of our control. So circumstances include those things. Okay, so that’s part one of The Model.

Next, we have our thoughts. So what are those? Well, they are the things that we think about our circumstances. They are where our opinions come in, they include things like adjectives and very descriptive words. So let me give you a few examples. I have a dad as my circumstance. We’d all agree that I have a dad if you knew him or saw him or saw my birth certificate or the fact that I’m here, I had to have had a dad, right?

So I have a dad as a circumstance. I have an amazing dad is a thought. I am 46 years old is a circumstance. I am old, I am over the hill, those are thoughts. I weigh 160 pounds is a circumstance. I’m fat is a thought. I have a job, insert your industry if you want. I’m an interior designer, I’m a florist, I’m a photographer, I’m a lawyer, that is a circumstance. But I have a horrible job, or I’m horrible at my job, or my job is killing me, those are all thoughts.

So do you start to see that the circumstance everybody would agree with but the thought people may or may not agree with. The thought, my job is killing me, some people may say, “Yeah it is,” and other people may say, “Well, you’re still here. You’re breathing, you’re not dead yet.”

So it’s not something that everybody would agree with. Okay, so in The Model, we call the top line where the circumstance is written down the C line, like the circumstance line. And the next line is the T line, or the thought line. And I think you can start to see this concept but be warned that when we’re starting to first become aware of our own thoughts, we often confuse circumstances and thoughts, and it’s okay.

It can take a little while for us to get good at telling the difference, and it’s so easy to see it in theory, and it’s really obvious when we’re looking at someone else, when we can point out their mistakes, their thoughts versus their circumstances, but it become a lot more difficult to become aware of our own thoughts until you really practice awareness.

So sort of like saying no that I said was a practice and balance that we talked about was a practice, awareness of your thoughts is also a practice. And it’s something that you’re going to get better at. So awareness of what in your mind is a circumstance versus what is a thought, get ready to spend a little time practicing, okay?

And I’m going to suggest to you right now so just keep this in mind that most of the things you think are circumstances in your life right now and that you believe you have no control over right now are likely really thoughts. And likely things that you can totally change if you want to.

So I know, those feelings can feel like fighting words, friends. Like Tobi, I’m about to blow up on you because those things are circumstances for me. But here’s the thing: if you can start to open your mind that many of the things that you have been blaming for your life and your problems are actually just thoughts that you’ve been thinking, then your entire life starts to change.

Now, the bad news may be that you have caused yourself to be right where you are. And that might not be the most fun thing to think about, but the good news is that once you learn The Model and start to become aware of your thoughts, you can make changes to think on purpose and get the exact results that you’ve been dreaming of.

And I know, I know, you’re thinking, “Tobi, you are crazy. This is podcast number four and it’s the fourth time I’ve thought you’re nuts,” and I get it because thinking about our thinking is really something that we don’t spend a lot of time doing, and it can feel a little woo-woo, as I love to call it, or a little out there.

But if you’ll go with me and spend some time in this space of thinking about our thinking, you’re going to start to realize that you have a lot of power over your life that you didn’t know you had. So you may also be thinking things like, “Of course I didn’t do this to myself, Tobi. Of course, these are circumstances, I would not cause my life to be harder than it has to be, and I wouldn’t keep myself from making a lot of money, and of course I wouldn’t intentionally not have a thriving relationship with my family or a thriving health,” and I completely agree with you.

You wouldn’t do that on purpose, and I’m not saying that you have. I’m saying that you did cause those results in your life but you didn’t know you were causing them.

So before we even go a second farther, let’s just stop for just a second and the first thing we need to do right now is start to embrace some compassion for ourselves and any results that we have created thus far in our life, good or bad. Let’s just say, “Yep, we did it, we didn’t know we were doing it, we didn’t realize it was coming from our thoughts, but that’s okay, we’re not going to do it in the future.”

And that reminds me of one of my favorite quotes ever by Maya Angelou, who by the way, Maya Angelou grew up in Arkansas with her grandmother. She’s an Arkansas girl or native, at least for part of her young childhood. Like, I’m an Arkansas native, but anyway, besides the point. Maya said this, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

I love that. Powerful, right? And that’s the thing. I believe 100% that we are always doing the best we can at any given moment. So give yourself a big old hug right now and love on yourself for doing the best you could have done up until this point and just hug it out. Hug it out, that feels so much better. Okay, I forgive myself, I’m not beating myself up, it’s okay.

And now let’s move on to what happens when we think these thoughts and how they lead to our results. Okay, so speaking of feelings, let’s see how feelings play into The Model. So we have the C line and the T line, and next we have the F line. So feelings are one of the five parts of The Model framework. They’re right in the middle, and a feeling is this: it’s a one-word vibration in your body.

Examples of feelings are things like sad, angry, depressed, stressed, overwhelmed, confused, happy, joyful, excited, energized, lonely, tired, exhausted, frustrated, elated, confident, peaceful. There’s so many, but you see how they create that vibration in your body, even just me pronouncing them differently based on, you know, how they make us feel.

Either excited or sad, we get that vibration in our body. So all feelings are created by our thoughts, always, 100% of the time. They don’t just happen by themselves. We think a thought and it creates a feeling. Good or bad.

We feel feelings but we also feel something called sensations. Now, let me tell you the difference. So a feeling of hunger that comes from our thoughts may be like a desire to eat because a thought we’re thinking like, “I’m tired and I need some energy,” or, “I’m bored,” or, “I’m happy and let’s eat to celebrate.”

So a feeling of hunger is not the same thing as a sensation of hunger. A sensation of hunger does not come from a thought. It’s a true physical thing that comes from another spot in the brain. It’s a hunger signal, and it tells us to eat because we need nourishment. So there’s a thought that’s hunger and there’s a sensation that’s hunger. And they’re two different things.

And yeah, that sensation of hunger is a whole other complicated issue that has to do with things like hormones and we’ll cover that sometime later in the podcast when we talk about wellness and weight loss and a bunch of other things. But for now, I want you to start to see that the feeling of hunger is different than a sensation of hunger, and if you have a feeling of hunger, it’s caused 100% by your thoughts. Sensations are not.

There’s some other sensations too like feeling hot or cold. So we say we feel those things, but they’re actually a physical sensation. So it’s usually not a thought we’re thinking that makes us believe we’re hot or cold, right? But definitely some thoughts we’re thinking will make us feel hungry, okay? So just to kind of help you understand the feelings we’re going to focus on for The Model are those that are that one-word vibration that are always caused by our thoughts.

Okay, after the F line in the model, we get to the A line, and that stands for action. It can also mean inaction. So either an action we take or an inaction, something we don’t do. So in The Model, the A line or the action line is caused by our feelings. So however we feel causes every single action we take or causes us not to take an action at all, and that’s where inaction comes in.

So if you want to start to know why you’re taking an action that you don’t want to be taking, or why you’re not taking an action that you really do want to be taking, say like not working out, you can trace it back to a thought you’re thinking that’s causing a feeling that keeps you from working out like, I want to work out but I’m thinking the thought, “I’m way too tired to work out,” which makes me feel really tired and exhausted and that makes my action be inaction, which is not working out.

So you start to see how this model works, okay? Maybe our circumstance is I weigh x amount of weight, and you think that that’s not the weight you want to be, so the circumstances say I weigh 170 pounds, the thought is, “I’m too tired to work out,” the feeling is I’m exhausted, the action or inaction is to not work out. So you can start to see how The Model works.

And finally, The Model ends with your result, or what we call the R line. So ultimately, if you go through The Model starting with the circumstance, the thought, the feeling, the action, and the result, you’re going to start to see that your thought creates your result.

So for example, if your action or inaction leads to your result and your inaction was not working out, and your result is that you’re out of shape, being out of shape all stems from a thought that you’re thinking that’s keeping you from working out. Wow, okay, so I get it, it’s a lot to take in.

Let’s recap for just a minute. We have a circumstance, we think a thought about the circumstance, it creates a feeling, that feeling causes an action or an inaction, and that action or inaction gives us our result.

So what we should now know is that we don’t have to change our circumstance to get a different result. We just have to change our thoughts about the circumstance, which is something that is completely within our control. Changing the circumstance often not in our control. Changing our thoughts about the circumstance, always in our control.

So now that we’ve dissected The Model, how do we start to use it to understand where we are in our lives right now versus where we want to go? Well, the where we want to go is where everybody wants to go immediately. Like, let’s jump right to that spot, let’s be thin and happy and rich and all the things we want to get in our life. That’s what Brooke Castillo who taught The Model and who created The Model calls going straight to rainbows and daisies.

And I get it, I want rainbows and daisies too, but here’s the thing: life doesn’t work that way. We don’t work that way. So the whole idea of The Model is just to start to understand at first all of your thoughts that are causing your current results, before you change a thing, just to become aware.

So there’s a good bit of work to do there that we have to really put into the awareness piece before we can start to design the life that we really want. And that literally starts with practicing awareness by doing what we call thought downloads, or it’s essentially journaling. And you need to do this every single day and sometimes I do it multiple times a day.

When a feeling comes up or when something – I become aware that I’m having say, anxiety, or stress, I immediately start writing it down so I can see what am I thinking that’s causing this. So I want you to start journaling and here’s the thing, here’s the rules of journaling or thought downloads: there is no editing and there is no judgment.

Because if you do either of those, you’re not going to find the real thought that’s the problem, so you won’t be able to change it if you decide you want to change it. So we have to be perfectly honest and we can’t edit and we can’t judge and it’s really just kind of like a brain dump on paper at least once a day.

So once we become more savvy with identifying our thoughts and our feelings because sometimes you’re going to think the thought first and sometimes you’re going to feel the feeling first, and it doesn’t really matter. But once we start to become more aware, then we can start to create thoughts and feelings and ultimately, our results, on purpose.

So keep in mind, it may take weeks or months of practice, or sometimes years of practice to make this awareness process happen. So depending on how deeply rooted your thoughts are or your beliefs are because that’s the thing, a belief is not the truth or any truer than a thought, it’s just a thought you’ve been thinking for a really long time. So it becomes very rooted like a core piece of who you are because you’ve thought it over and over and over again, but it’s still just a thought.

So depending on what kind of beliefs and thoughts you’ve been practicing for years, it might take a little time to get underneath them and to start to become aware of them. Our beliefs didn’t happen overnight, we can’t change them overnight. But keep this in mind, this process is going to take some time and let’s at least explore that imagining we’ve gotten to that awareness point or we’ve gotten to some version of awareness. How do we then start to think thoughts on purpose and get us the results we want? Because I just want to give you a picture of what this looks like.

So first of all, most people just try to change their actions or the A line. That’s what we coaches call coaching on the A line, and here’s the thing: if you just change your actions online, like if you stop procrastinating and go get on the treadmill, that’ll work for a little while, but it’s not going to work long term because if you don’t go all the way back to changing your thoughts, you just change your actions, it’s usually going to be temporary.

I would say, pretty much always. It’s not going to last long term because you’re not getting to the root cause of the problem. So that’s why for example, going on a diet for most people doesn’t work if you don’t change your core beliefs around food or your core beliefs about weight loss and whether you believe you can really lose weight, or your core beliefs about your own self-worth or whatever it is that you’re believing and thinking that’s causing the problem.

So yeah, you’ll likely lose weight on a diet when you change your actions in the short run, but unless you get to the cause of the problem, which is always going to be your thoughts, you will just put the weight back on later. So this is a huge concept here, okay? So it deserves its own podcast all by itself is getting to the root cause of things and beliefs and we will have many podcasts on that I’m sure in the future.

But I just want you to start to understand this whole idea and The Model involved what we call causal coaching or getting to the cause of the problem. Not just changing your actions. Now, I get that today’s podcast is pretty deep and pretty long. It’s really important. We’re going to use The Model over and over again about so many things and the Design You podcast is going to come back to this concept again and again and again, and you probably want to listen to this podcast number four many times.

But I just want you to know, hang with me because this is important and we’re getting close to being done and then you’ll have a picture of how to use The Model to start to look at your thoughts. So back to this idea of The Model.

If we want to create what we call an intentional model or thinking on purpose, that means we’ll call the other one the thoughts we were not thinking on purpose, unintentional, and this is intentional. What do you want to do?

Well, when you want to change your results, you don’t start at the top with your circumstance and then your thought, you actually have to reverse engineer the whole model. So you start at the bottom and you say, what do I want my result to be? What result do I want to achieve? And you ask yourself these questions, okay.

So what result do I want? And then you ask yourself, what actions or inaction would I have to take to get the result I say I want? And the next question, working your way up the model, is what feeling would I have to have – how would I have to feel to make sure that I took that action or inaction?

And then finally, working your way up one more step to that T line, when we’re thinking about a certain circumstance – because this all has to do with a certain circumstance, say I want to lose weight or I want to get a better job or I want to make more money, whatever your circumstance is, is all of these steps, right. So then you have to think a thought about that circumstance that causes the feeling you just identified that you have to have to get the result you want.

So what thought do I have to think to get me to feel this feeling which will get me to take this action or inaction which will get me the result that I say that I want? Okay, so here’s what I want you to realize. All of these thoughts, feelings, actions, and results in the intentional model, are about the same circumstance that we were dealing with in the unintentional model. So you can’t change the circumstance; the circumstance stays the same and you change your thoughts which changes your feeling, your action and your result. Do you get it?

So let me give you an example because it’s a little confusing. And let’s tie this all up with a pretty little bow and see how we can be on our way to start looking at our life, okay. So let me give you an example that involves my own thinking. Okay, so let’s say the circumstance is this – I have an interior design business – and this is the unintentional model.

So I have an interior design business and my thought is, this business is killing me. And when I think the thought, this business is killing me, how do I feel? Well, I feel overwhelmed. And when I feel overwhelmed, what do I do? Well, it’s not an action for me, it’s an inaction. I procrastinate on my design work and my to-do list that I’m staring at that’s killing me, right.

So what’s my result? Well nothing. Nothing comes off my to-do list. There’s still 100 things on my to-do list. And here’s the thing; in the unintentional model, it’s tricky because the result always proves to us that our thinking was right. For example, when I realize there’s still 100 things on my to-do list because I’ve done nothing, I’m not paying attention to the fact that I’ve done nothing, I’m just looking at the list and it’s got 100 things on it. And it proves to me that my thought, this business is killing me, is absolutely right. I see it right there. One more day, still 100 things.

In fact, I think my to-do list is growing and it is, for sure, killing me. So I believe that to be the truth when it’s just a thought. Okay, so not, let’s look at an intentional model that gets me the results I want. So the circumstance is still that I have an interior design business. We would all agree that I do. Y’all can see my website, you can see the work I’ve done.

We all know, it can be proven in a court of law, that I have an interior design business. But if I want to get an intentional result, I work my way from to bottom up in the model. So the first thing I do is say what kind of result do I want. Well, I want work-life balance. I don’t want 100 things on my to-do list and my business to be killing me. I want work-life balance.

Okay, so what’s the first question I ask myself? I say, what action or inaction would I have to take to get work-life balance? Well, my answer in this instance is I would have to do at least the three most important things on my to-do list every single day, but I’d also have to stop working by 4PM. That’s what I’ve decided is my time to quit so I can have balance and spend the evening with my family, okay.

So if I’m going to do the top three things on my list at least and still quit working every single day by 4PM, how am I going to have to feel? Well, it’s going to be different for all of us. These aren’t going to be your answers; these are my answers. And my answer is, I would have to feel committed, just like totally committed, that I’m going to do at least these three things every day but at four o’clock, I’m going to stop and I’m going to be with my family.

So if I wanted to feel committed, what kind of thought do I have to think? Well, I’m not going to think this business is killing me because that makes me feel overwhelmed. But what I know is if I think the thought, this business is amazing but so is my life, then that’s going to make me feel committed to doing three important things in my business every day, but also having a life and quitting at 4PM.

So, if we then look at The Model in the right direction, the intentional model we just created for me, the circumstance is, I have an interior design business. My thought is, this business is amazing but so is my life. So I feel committed to my action of doing at least the three most important things on my list every single day and then quitting work by 4PM to spend time with my family. And my result is work-life balance.

And here’s the thing; the result always proves my thought. So does work-life balance prove my thought which, my business is amazing but so is my life? Yes, because I have balance and they’re both represented in somewhat of an equal percentage in my life because of the actions I’m taking.

So I hope that makes it a little more clear to you and you can start to see that the shift in thinking changes everything. My design business, the circumstance, didn’t change at all. I still have the same business. I still have the same workload. I still have the exact same clients and same employees and same to-do list. Nothing about the circumstance changed, but my thoughts about the circumstance changed.

So let’s wrap it up for today, okay. So here’s the thing; we might revisit this again later because there’s a few more things you’re going to need to know, but just get started practicing it. So you’re probably going to find that you can’t go straight from the unintentional model to the intentional model. And we’ll talk about that in a future podcast because you’re going to need something called a bridge thought.

And an example of a bridge thought – let me give you one just so you can see. It might not go from, my business is killing me to my business is amazing and so is my life. You might have to take a baby step, like my business is killing me, and your baby step is, I’m learning to love my business or my business isn’t all bad or I’ll stop work one hour earlier today or I’ll have one day a week for my family, or some little baby step that gets you from where you are to where you want to go, okay.

So, keep that in mind. We can’t go from A to Z in one step. But before we get this any more complicated than it already seems at the moment, here is your homework, because today, we have podcast homework. So here’s what I want you to do; please start writing down your thoughts – what we call thought downloads.

And this is going to help you begin to see how your thoughts are leading to your results. That’s all I want you to do right now. If you then want to try doing a model based on our examples today, you can totally try it and see how it feels and just start to connect the dots that what you’re thinking and how you’re feeling is giving you the results that you’re getting in your life right now.

And start to open your mind that changing your thoughts could be the solution to any problem and every problem you have in your life, okay. So go get busy on those thought downloads. Try to do it every single day and I’ll see you back next week with a new podcast.

And here’s the thing; if you loved this podcast or you loved any of my first three podcasts and you’ve listened to those and you have a moment, would you please, please, please leave me a rating and a review in iTunes? You can search for my show on iTunes and subscribe to it and click on ratings and reviews and leave your review there. Or you can visit tobifairley.com/itunes for exact instructions on how to leave me a review.

So I would absolutely love to hear what you think about the Design You podcast and how else besides the Model and the topics we’ve covered so far, that I can help you create a business and a life that you absolutely love because that’s what I want to do for you. So I’ll see you again here really soon.

Thank you so much for joining me for this episode of The Design You Podcast. And if you’d like even more support for designing a business and a life that you love, then check out my exclusive monthly coaching program Design You at tobifairley.com.

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Hi! I'm Tobi

I help creative women (and a few really progressive dudes) design profit-generating, soul-fulfilling businesses that let them own their schedule, upgrade their life and feel more alive than ever!

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