This simple, optimistic sentence helps you focus on how something could work, rather than why it won’t.
Our general contractor took my breath away. And not just because he’s adorable.
We were trying to figure out how to fit a window seat under the eaves without removing too much of my house’s framing and upsetting the structural engineer and city inspectors.
“There’s always a way,” he said.
“Wait, what did you just say?” I asked him, astonished.
“There’s always a way,” he repeated. “We’ll figure it out.”
His words were like a breath of fresh air. Rather than slogging through all the reasons why the window seat wouldn’t work there under the eaves, he started from the expansive perspective that he could build anything. His words were energizing and reassuring for all of us in that tense contractor meeting.
When I think back on the mistakes of my marketing career (of which there were many), perhaps the most profound mistake I made was not thinking more like my carpenter. Looking back, I wish I had said “There’s always a way” more often. What a breath of fresh air that might have been for my managers and colleagues.
Our carpenter built a beautiful window seat under the eaves. And it passed inspection.
I thought of him while I was working with a coaching client recently. According to her, there was no way she was going to find another job that paid as well as her current role. According to her, there was no way she was going to find a job that was as flexible.
She was slogging through all the reasons why changing her situation was impossible.
“There’s always a way,” I told her. “We’ll figure it out.”