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Have you ever had a feeling in the pit of your stomach that something is not right? How about a nagging feeling of discontentment? Do these feelings cause you to experience a lack of sleep, loose your temper easily, always seem on edge, unable to clear your thoughts. Maybe you attribute the root cause of these feelings to a poor relationship, lack of finances, lack of good health, or overall confusion about life and your journey. In an effort to deal with these negative feelings do you find ways to self medicate, such as; under or overeat, shop, have a glass of wine or a beer, become non-social and disconnected, or even more serious use some type of drug? I could go on and on with a list of less than positive “medications” that we prescribe to treat that “pit in your stomach” feeling. Let’s ask ourselves do these really work, or is there another wonder drug that will cure us?

I can tell you from working with thousands of coaching client’s and my own experience, anytime that “pit” feeling comes on it is because we are suffering in the effect. You are probably thinking, “What does that mean…, in the effect?” Let me explain in more detail, the American Heritage Dictionary defines the word effect as, “the power to produce an outcome or achieve a result; something being brought about by a cause or agent.” So what’s the diagnosis doc? In short, your feelings are in turmoil because you are reacting to situations and circumstances (effects) in which you did not choose or have a hand in the desired outcome. What’s the cure to get rid of “the pit”? Become part of the cause! The fact of the matter is that “pit in your stomach” feeling is a warning sign; a red flag that you can use to your advantage instead of trying to kill it with damaging self medicating ways.

Take a moment and think of a time where you distinctly remember having that “pit” feeling. What was happening? What circumstance were you dealing with? Now, ask yourself, were you being part of the cause or dealing in the effect? In all likelihood you answered, effect. The key anytime you feel this type of anxiety is that you need to quickly move from the effect to the cause. Let me give you an example to help you understand cause and effect. Let’s say you go into work and they tell you you’ve lost your job. How would you feel inside; angry, scared, nervous, disoriented? What was the cause? – loosing your job. What was the effect? – all those negative feelings. Now how would you feel going out on interviews, brushing up on your resume, landing an even better job? You would feel great right? You were being part of the cause. You were taking action. You were choosing and having a hand in your desired outcome.

Let’s do another example. Jane and John both have the same problem; their bank accounts are almost at zero. Both have that gut feeling of discontentment with their financial future. Jane looks at her finances as something that she can do little about. The job she has and the salary she makes is what she has to work with and that’s as far as she goes, hoping she’ll get a raise so that her feeling of discontentment will go away. John on the other hand decides to look for a side business that he can do to create more cash, finds one, works hard and makes a profit. Who is being a part of the cause and who is dealing with effect? Here’s a good one. Say you are unhappy with your weight, that nagging feeling of being unhealthy and unhappy with your appearance. Instead of just dealing with the effect, i.e. your clothes being tight, telling yourself excuses for your weight gain and living with that extra chin; how would you feel if you went out on a walk, started going to a gym or passing up dessert? Pretty proud right? Again you are taking action not reacting.

We’ve heard the saying, “Life is a journey not a destination”, so get out there and enjoy the journey, create your own map and be the cause! Let me give you a quick five step tool that has had an amazing impact on my life and thousands of other client’s I have worked with.

*** Five Steps to Take Advantage of “the Pit” ***

Step 1. State your desired outcome.

Step 2. Write down what you are currently doing to deserve this outcome (How are you being the cause?).

Step 3. What more could you be doing to feel more deserving of this desired outcome?

Step 4. What could you replace from what you are currently doing that would lead you to be more deserving?

Step 5. Based on the list above what are you going to do now?

Remember… stop dealing with effects and be the CAUSE!