People love to make a contribution to us. If given a chance to do the right thing for us, or to please us, they usually will. Unfortunately, they don't always know what we want, or their attention is elsewhere. OR, in the past when they've done something for us, they haven't "won" from the experience, or been acknowledged.

If we were willing to show people what we want, in a way that was easy for them to hear, and fun for them to provide - what would life be like? In short, we could "train" people to give us what we want. If they enjoy the experience, then both parties win!

However, often we're not ~willing~ to train. Instead, we complain that we're not getting what we want. We resent the person for not being how they should be, or not giving us what we want. Often we'll think: "they ~should~ know better". Particularly in the case of women training their man in relationship: "He should know I'd rather have him take me to bed now than watch the football".

If we're willing to give up the notion that anyone ~should~ do anything, or know how to please us, AND accept that training is good for all, then we can have a lot of fun!

I recall the weekend my girlfriend met my parents. With zero foresight, I got a beer for myself and walked out to where everyone was sitting. Seeing my girlfriend without a drink, I instantly wished I had been more thoughtful and gotten her a drink. She could have said something sarcastic like: "Thanks darling", or "Don't worry I'll get it myself". However, I was surprised to hear her say: "Oh, what a great idea. Could I have a wine please?"

You see, she could have been upset that her man wasn't thinking of her. Maybe she ~was~! But she didn't act from that. Instead, she 1) Found me right for having a good idea, 2) Gave me something easy to do, and 3) Thanked me at the end. We both got to win.

Welcome to The Training Cycle.

The Training Cycle can be used with anyone - colleagues, your manager, your secretary, parents, your kids, your spouse. I know a female teacher in New York who taught 15 year old boys. In the beginning, they were aggressive and rude - deliberately disobeying instructions. However, after 6-12 months of the training cycle, they were competing to see who would be chosen to do what she asked! In this article, I'll normally use the example of a woman training her male partner in a relationship (because that's the most interesting, and the most productive.)


ARTICLE PART II: "The Training Cycle"

The More Institute has developed a simple but nifty technique. It might sound overly simple, but if for a few days you observe yourself and others when you want something, you'll be surprised how rarely we do this.

Firstly, pick a person to try this with. Think of something you would like them to do for you (or for themself) - something easy for them. Maybe something you've always wanted more of, but not been sure how to ask. In this example we'll use Mary wanting a massage from Bill:

1) Find them right

This means find something about them or something they've recently done that you like, or think is a good thing (it's amazing how often we find people wrong!). And say it. For example: "Thanks for coming home early tonight Bill; it's great to see you".

2) Ask them to do something that's easy for them to do;

nothing too hard or taxing (this we'll work up to!). For example: "Bill, would you mind rubbing my shoulders for two minutes?"

3) Thank or acknowledge them.

Yes - it's obvious, right? But so often this is missing from our communication. "Wow - that feels great Bill - you have an instinct for this".

Now if you really want to put this to good effect, once you've acknowledged them at the end of the cycle, you can jump straight back to Step 2: "Could you press a little harder there?" And Step 3): "Ah - perfect". And Step 2): "Would you run your fingernails lightly over my neck?".....Step 3) "That feels great." If there's a silence of more than a few seconds, go back to Step 1).

A client of mine, Jan, was so fed up with what she called her husband's "ineptitude", she was ready to resign from the small business they'd built together. Armed with The Training Cycle, she decided to give it one more shot. That week, she found two errors in the pamphlets he'd been in charge of. She was instantly angry, feeling this confirmed her belief that he couldn't be relied upon. Standard practice from the last ten years would involve yelling at him, and handling the corrections herself. However, remembering The Training Cycle, she calmed down and called him.

"Jack, thank you for organising these pamphlets so quickly" (Step 1 - find him right). "Now I've spotted a couple of errors, what do you think we should do about it?" (Step 2 - Give him something easy to do).

Jack called back in 30 minutes, "as excited" - in her words - "as a little boy". He'd negotiated with the printer to have the pamphlets reprinted, within 24 hours, and for FREE. "Great job Jack!" (Step 3). So Jan not only got what she wanted, without having to take time out to handle it herself, but had her man win as well!

(Note - for people who feel this technique might be manipulation - feel free to tell your partner what you're trying. In the above example, Jan told Jack she was going to try it this week. Clearly he didn't object!)

Practice this week with small things. Pick one person, or try it whenever you would like something, or are about to complain.
1) Find them right
2) Ask for something easy that they can do
3) Acknowledge or thank them
4) Repeat until you die happily surrounded by your grand children.

Enjoy - and I'd love to hear about your experiences with this.

Author's Bio: 

David Wood is a personal coach, and a Director of CoachCampus - an online coach training company. He asks people “What do you want?? and “What are you doing about it??

He coaches individuals in several countries via e-mail and telephone, and speaks to organisations on topics such as 'Create A Life You Love'.

David specializes in helping women get what they want and deserve from their relationship, and helping new coaches get started in the career of life coaching.

Professional Affiliations: International Coach Federation, National Speakers Association of Australia,
Institute of Actuaries of Australia.

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