I can’t tell you how often a coaching client of mine will say something like this; “I’m busy, so busy at work, all the time, but I never seem to get it all done.”

There are so many directions I could go when coaching someone who presents with that kind of statement.  I could ask them to define “busy”, or to describe how they’d rather be other than “busy”.  I might suggest a brainstorming session on how they could solve their conundrum, or perhaps have them make a prioritized list of everything on their plate.  Or maybe we’ll uncover that their main issue is an inability to delegate, so there really is too much on their plate.

But more often than not, and something that so many of the people I’ve coached over the years have in common, is that we all tend to confuse being busy with progress.

For some reason, we make the connection that if we are busy… if we are constantly occupied with moving stuff around (paperwork, emails, meetings, conversations, thoughts, ideas)… we equate that with making progress.

But progress is really more aligned with accomplishment than it is with being busy.  Progress is about “moving the dial”.  It’s about getting through phases or milestones and reaching some level of completion.

So, when I hear a client say how busy they are, I know we are in for an interesting and insightful coaching conversation that’s often less about how busy they are and more about how they can make better progress!

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