“If you drop a frog into boiling water, it will instinctively jump out. But if you place a frog in a pot of cool water and gradually increase the temperature, the frog won’t notice that the water’s getting hotter. It will sit there until the water boils - and will boil with it.” - Primal Leadership
A lot of clients come to coaching just before reaching the boiling point.
They recognize that they are no longer showing up to life the way they once did, pointing to a historical moment where they seemed to have more enthusiasm.
They realize that leading the same team or executing against their vision now seems to take far more effort than it did when they were fresh in their role.
They notice that they carry the weight of a bad attitude with them, most of the time, convinced that if only one or two circumstances would shift, then they could drop the weight.
Most of us are at least as smart as frogs - we wouldn’t jump head first into something that was instinctively a wrong fit. What does set us apart from frogs is that we do notice the change in temperature. It is the tiny thought that “something is off” or the signal we get in our throat or gut, but few of us choose to address the signal.
We turn away from the signal because no one else is saying anything or we can’t imagine adding another item to our already overwhelming list of priorities or we assume it is not important because it is not as tangible as what is calling for immediate attention in front of us.
And soon enough, we are at our boiling point, unsure of how we got here.
Noticing and taking action is hard work and it is the opportunity to step into leadership.
What are you ignoring?