Cat on laptop

You’ve learned so much in lockdown – things you never imagined you’d need to know. Like how to stop your glasses steaming up when you wear a mask. How to get 47 people into Zoom breakout rooms or how to eek out a bottle of milk for three days. Oh, and how to work with a furry creature on your keyboard.

Of course, you’ve learned more meaningful things, too. The need to speak to someone you love every day so you don’t feel low and isolated. You’ve learned that that you can laugh with colleagues when your daughter bombs the team call, when once you’d have felt embarrassed. You’ve learned how empowering it is to step up and have that courageous conversation.

I know for me and many of my purpose-led coaching clients some of our learning has been challenging. The scales have really fallen from my eyes, for example, in realising I was not engaged enough with the issues highlighted by Black Lives Matter. That’s been uncomfortable. If we embrace the discomfort, though, lockdown has been an absolute treasure trove of information to build on.

My clients have recently been reflecting on their learning. We’ve been looking at how to turn learning into positive behaviour change that makes a tanglible difference – to their personal and professional lives and to their organisations.

Learning into action – here’s how to do it

1. The first step is to take notice. I invite you to find some quiet time to reflect on the details of what you’ve learned in lockdown. Uncover it all. Think big, think small, think practical, think mindset, think what you’ve learned from other people, the ‘good stuff’ the ‘bad’ stuff, think about what you’d rather not have learned.

2. Next, find a way to capture it. Get it down in writing or record it somehow. Doodle it. Draw it. Once you have this complete list of learning, you can return to it any time to work on further. In my experience, if it’s not captured, as circumstances change, this learning gets lost.

3. Choose three pieces of learning to start working on. You could consider what inspires you most. What you ‘ought’ to look at, maybe. What the biggest challenge might be, or the easiest win. It doesn’t really matter. Just choose three.

4. Then hone it down to one. What piece of learning, if transformed into positive behaviour change, would give you the biggest bang for your buck, if you embedded it deeply into the fabric of your life or work. Imagine you simply could not fail and choose one area to look at first.

5. Now consider all the actions you could take to turn this learning into useful action. Think about habits, new practices, one-off actions, or stopping/starting something.

6. Commit to just one, single new action, habit or practice that you want to do. Write it down as a commitment.

7. Consider how to make yourself accountable for doing it?  If it’s a habit or new practice, do you want to get it done at the same time each day? Do you need to tell someone what you’re up to? Or team up with another person? If it’s a one-off action, when exactly will you take this action? How will you make sure this important thing actually happens? How will you ‘get out of your own way’ so you don’t sabotage yourself?

8. And then, when you’re ready (and maybe if you’re not) just do it!

9. Finally, If it’s a new habit, keep doing it. If it’s a one-off action, go back to Step 5. What’s the next action that builds on what you’ve done. It might be reflecting on it, tweaking it, putting something else in place, creating a new habit. Whatever you feel is the next right thing to do.

What next?

I’d love to help you turn lockdown learning into positive change for you and your organisation. Drop me a line or give me a call to arrange a chat to see how I can best support you.