The Problem Is…

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This weekend I was driving to New Jersey for a meeting, and I had an a-ha moment that I want to talk with you about this week. I have noticed this on so many calls where people call me and we chat, and throughout the call, they are saying “the problem is…” In this episode, I share how problems are only circumstances that we think are problems. I discuss how to shift this in your mind and be able to find the solution you need.

At the beginning of the show, I mention my friend Rhonda who is a life coach and intimacy expert. So if this is an area you might want some help with, be sure to check out her podcast, The Intimacy Podcast here:

Topics in this episode

  • Circumstances versus problems
  • Examples of a problem, and the mindset shift
  • The results of thinking about a situation as a problem
  • Thinking about solutions ahead of time
  • Giving ourselves space to think about the answer
  • Deliberate living
  • Asking better questions

I am looking for 5 busy professionals who are feeling stuck, but can’t seem to find the time to think about what’s next. If you want to excel at work and home, email me at Use the word Calgon, and I’ll send you more details.

This is not for you if you don’t want to excel at work and home. If this is you, I want you to send me an email with the word Calgon, and I’ll send you more details. My email address is:


Hello hello hello – how are you guys today?
Im excellent – lol – its funny – everytime I speak to my friend Rhonda she always says – are you excellent today? Lol
OH – you guys – she’s actually also a life coach
And she is the intimacy expert – the podcast is The Intimacy Podcast
I think what she does important at so many levels – you should check her out
Ok – I have a funny story to share with you
I shouldn’t admit this – but its true – lol
And the reason I’m putting it out there is because I had such an aha this past weekend
So I have my Bachelors degree from Siena College and my Masters degree from St Rose
Both schools are in upstate NY
And the reason I ended up there –
Was because I could get there
Listen to this
Without having to drive on any highways
I know it sounds crazy right?
I used to be so afraid of driving on highways
And getting lost
Fast forward to this past week
I had a meeting to get to in NJ
Well – let me take a minute to back up and say –
I now drive A LOT
And on a lot of
And this past week I was heading to a meeting
And I was talking on the phone

Hands free of course
And just listening to GPS tell me where to go
– talk about a way we live unconsciously right
So as I’m driving I’m starting to realize
She’s taking me over the George Washington Bridge
Which is in NYC
And I’m not even thinking twice about getting around this crazy area
Well – I had some thoughts about it lol
But not the thoughts of I would be afraid to be lost
And wouldn’t be able to make it to the meeting because it was a highway
Which made me think of you – and my clients
This is a great example of not being able to look to my past
For evidence of being able to do something new now
You see that
Pay attention to when you hear yourself say you’ve never been able to do something
Because that doesn’t matter
You can do new things-
Ok – let’s move into todays topic
Because it actually came to me as I was making this drive
Today I want to talk to you about the problem
I noticed on multiple occasions this week
I had people calling me and as we chatted
I realized how often they wanted to say
Well Michelle

The problem is ….
Or – well let me tell you what the problem is
Do you hear this at work?
It is so evident to me now a days
Because I don’t believe there are problems
Unless we THINK there are problems
You hear what I’m saying?
Things happen in life
Things we can’t control
They are called circumstances
Circumstances are neutral
Until we have a thought
So let me share some examples
For as long as I’ve been in sales
Which is a long time
There has always been changes in inventory
Like not having enough
You guys -this goes back to even when I sold television air time
Air time
Yes – you run out of that
Even now in my current career
There are times when inventory is up
And times when inventory is down
That is neutral
Until we think –
This is a problem
And let me just point out something here

When I hear people telling me what the problem is
They are not feeling great
They are usually frustrated
To say the least
And they are venting
Usually complaining
And do you know what they are usually not doing?
Finding a solution
Which is a problem right?
So let me show you how not having the amount of inventory is not the problem
Because you could have the same amount of inventory
And another thought could be –
I’m going to figure out how to get my customers what they need
Now –
When we are thinking more along these lines we likely feel
Determined right?
And then what do you think you do?
Well – if you have to rob Peter to pay Paul you do that
If you have to ask colleagues to do some swaps – you do that
If you have to ask favors from other co workers you do that
And when you are doing all of this
You will figure out how to take care of your customers
See the difference?
The inventory status doesn’t change
They thoughts are the determining factor in the outcome
Here’s the other thing
I really encourage my team to think about some solutions ahead of time

I don’t want people just coming to me to tell me the problem
They are always smart people who are telling me this
So I want them to come up with a couple of solutions in advance
I think its a great process to implement in teams
If there is a “problem” you come with some solutions
Because listen – everyones brain knows the answers
We just need to give ourselves the space to actually think about what they might be
Instead – our primitive brain just wants to find the negative
Which is normal right?
Remember – the primitive brain is hard wired to look for the negative
It’s the brains job to keep us alive
And the way it has always done this is by scanning for the negative and steering clear
So unconscious living is to find the problems
And then avoid them
But we are about deliberate living now
We don’t have to scan for things like saber tooth tigers anymore
We don’t live in caves
Most of us have some really nice living quarters
We have heat and a/c and sometimes we can even have our groceries delivered
It’s time to evolve our brains to think on purpose
One of the tools I like to have my clients do is work on
Is asking better questions
So instead of asking something like
How come corporate can never figure this out
You ask – what are 3 ways I can figure out how to get my customers what they need
Take a moment to think about that
When you are asking why corporate can never figure it out

You will find all the reasons why they can’t
And what does that leave you?
Just a bunch of complaining right?
But if you start asking yourself to find 3 steps
you are going to be way more successful in hitting you goal
See the difference?
Here are some other questions I like to ask myself
– How can I make this fun?
– What is perfect about this situation —
OHhhhh… thats a good one right?
That will make your head explode for sure
Its so not what we are used to thinking
We are much more like to ask ourselves why this is happening TO me
Instead lets ask how it’s perfect
Or – how is this happening FOR me
You will find so many different answers
Ask better questions
Get better answers
Here’s another one
Ask yourself why you are such a good rep – or mom – or doctor
And find all of those answers
Your problems will for sure diminish
The other place I see this?
When my clients tell me the problem is
They don’t have any time to do what they want
I hear this a lot
I used to say it a lot

But lets look at that
Well for sure if you say this and
missed last weeks episode on choices
Please go back and listen
But let’s stick with the idea you don’t have time
And I know it feels sooooo true
I’m telling you – it took me a long time to let go of this
But keeping it is not useful
And what I mean by that is –
If you think the problem is you never have enough time
Then you will not ever be able to find time
For this one Im not even going to give you questions to ask yourself
I want you to just noodle on seeing how thinking you never have enough time
Will produce you never having enough time
How does that happen?
Think abut how you feel when you think you never have enough time?
I think for me it was – overwhelmed
Maybe stressed
And what do you do when you are overwhelmed and stressed
Usually we are running around trying to put out fires
Running around trying to take care of everyone around us
Feeling like we are not really in control
And the result is
Well chaos right?
And you don’t take the time to do what you want
I really encourage you to think about that
Once you can see how that plays out –

LIke truly see
You can decide if you want to keep thinking it
It is everything my friend
When you catch yourself saying – the problem is …
I want you to think of that the solution is
Who better than you to find the answer?
Nobody sister
You totally got this
One last thing before we finish –
I am looking for 5 busy women professionals who are feeling stuck –
but can’t find the tie to even think about what’s next.
One point – this is NOT for you if you don’t want to excel at work and home
If that you – send me an email with just the word CALGON and Ill send more details
Ok – that’s what I have for you today
Let’s circle back next week – for now
Make it a great day
Take care!

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