In today’s bite-sized podcast, Studio Growth Coach Jane Grech
is here to help you rediscover your passion for your dance
studio on our Motivational Monday special.
Check out what Jane talks about here.
Hello, dance studio owners, it’s Jane Grech here, Studio Growth Coach for Dance Studio Owners’ Association and leadership expert for the Inner Circle.
It’s great to be talking to you today about a concept that I hope really helps you, when you’re feeling a little bit overwhelmed. It’s known as the Circle of Control. It has a few other names but we’ll go with that, and it’s been made famous by Stephen Covey. He was the author of the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People and if you’re looking for something to add to your reading list, may I suggest that book because it really has been a great influence over the way I’ve lived my life.
Let’s drill down to the Circle of Control a little bit more and how it can help you manage overwhelm, or anxiety, or just feeling a little bit out of your depth.
I want you to imagine a large circle, and inside that, a smaller circle. The smaller circle is what’s inside your Circle of Control, and the larger circle on the outside of that is what’s not in your Circle of Control.
Now, Stephen Covey, he goes into a little more detail about this, but I’ve simplified it for the work that I do with my students and as well with the work that I do with my staff.
Just the two circles is fine.
When you’re feeling like life’s kind of coming at you, have a look at what falls into those two circles. One you can actually do something about, and the other, not so much. One of the examples I use with my students if they come to me and they say they’re worried about their ballet exam. We grab a whiteboard marker and we draw the circles up on the whiteboard, and I go, “All right, let’s flesh this out.” And they’re used to this, now, they can do it by themselves most of the time. “Let’s flesh this out. What can you do about being worried about your dance exam?” Or, “Ballet exam?” And they give me the right answers most of the time.
So it might be that they make sure their attendance in class is constant. It might be that they work really hard to apply their corrections. It might be that they write their corrections down. They take extra classes. Right? All of that, they have the power.
What they don’t have the power over is actually the content. So therefore it’s not the content of the exam. Therefore it’s no use whinging about how hard the pirouette is, because it’s not going to change anything and it’s certainly not going to make your pirouette any better. Or, whinging about how tough of an examiner you’ve been allocated, or the fact that it could be really, really hot or really, really cold that day, or the fact that the floor is not your ideal surface if you’re going into a different exam room.
None of those things you can change, so you want to bring them back to focusing on what they can change, and spend your energy worrying and acting on those. My grandmother, God rest her soul, she gave me great advice and said, “Darling, don’t worry about the things that you can’t change.” And look, I know it’s easier said than done, right?
I’m with you. But, it’s great advice.
This Circle of Control can really drill that down and make us reflect on what we can and can’t do. The idea is, if you’ve got a staff member that’s coming to you that’s worried about something, you can say to them, “Well, let’s put this in this diagram.” If they’re whinging about something that can’t be changed, how can they change, perhaps, their behaviour, to make it easier?
And it’s the same with yourself. Running a dance studio is tough. I’m with you. I’ve done it for 11 years, and there are some days that I think, “Wow, no, this is hard work.”
But you’re not alone.
There are dance studio owners all over the world feeling the same. But we are the lucky ones. We are doing a job that lights us up and that we love. And in every job there’s tough days.
The other thing that I do is use a little bit of a scale. A scale of one to 10. What this does is just re-frames (in case I’m catastrophizing, in case I’m making a drama over something that perhaps doesn’t need to be as dramatic) on a scale of one to 10, one being fairly mild and 10 being a complete catastrophe. Where does this actually sit? Whatever challenge I’m facing this day. Where does this actually fit?
Then, after I’ve put it on the scale and reframed my thoughts around it, now what can I do about it? What about this challenge is something that I have influence over? What can I change? Is it my behaviour? Can I speak with somebody else about their behaviour? Then, what is it that I have no power over?
What is outside my Circle of Control?
At the end of the day, we need to be able to go home and put our head down on the pillow and let the day’s worries slip away. Hand them over to a greater power, if that’s what you believe in. Let them go, because to run a studio you need to be able to sleep well, and not be spending energy and having anxiety over things that you cannot change. You want to use your energy in a really positive light, in a real positive way to influence those around you.
For the next 2 weeks, you can join Jane and our team of studio growth coaches inside our brand new FREE training, New Student Blitz.
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