Crew Coach: by Capt. Rob Gannon
Recently I gave a talk about an inner guidance system we all can call upon – our inner GPS. I think most everyone is familiar with Global Positioning Systems that show us where we are at any given time on this planet. Well, I believe we also have a personal, or inner, GPS that can tell us where we are with our overall wellness and functioning in this world.
Like all navigational systems, this inner GPS operates most accurately when we enter the right commands. I will break it down into principles to be considered for entering, principles that can guide us to a feeling of overall wellness, starting with each of the three letters of GPS. It’s a bit much to try to jam into one column, so this is going to be a series of three columns. OK, here we go with the “G” words.
Gratitude: Gratitude can certainly guide us on our path toward a general feeling of wellness and appreciation. When we are grateful we tend to focus more on what we have, and not what we think we lack. Feelings of lack can be stress-inducing and produced by thoughts gone astray. We can feel envious, sad and even inadequate when we operate from lack. This will throw off the inner GPS and give off some inaccurate readings. On the other hand when we are thankful and appreciative for our opportunities and experiences, we are guided in the right direction. If there are doubts about that, I suggest trying it out. Switch over to the gratitude operating system and I think the positive effects will be evident.
Growth: It has been the belief of most of our teachers down through the ages that humans are meant to grow. Not just physically in height and weight, but internally. Our thoughts, beliefs and ways of dealing with life and with others should evolve over time if we want a healthy operating system. Being stuck in old ways that do not serve us well will not be compatible with a fully functioning inner GPS. Have you ever noticed that the folks stuck in their narrow views, full of judgment and fears of new growth, are usually not very happy? I think we all know someone who fits that description. Their constricting thoughts consume them, and joy finds it hard to enter. This will surely throw off the inner GPS – inaccurate readings, once again. Growing, learning and embracing the process of becoming fine tunes the system and the readings can be trusted.
Genuine: Being the real deal – authentic, sincere and comfortable in your own skin – is another valuable entry for the inner GPS. We can easily go off course when we operate from an inauthentic place. Reactions and perceptions can be skewed. We are not living from truth. These are bad entries for the inner GPS for sure. Think about misrepresenting yourself on a CV and then getting hired. Think about how it would feel. The unease of feeling a bit like a fraud would not make for a healthy guidance system. We may feel like a course correction is needed, but we fear the consequences. We must also be sincere and authentic in dealing with others. No one really cares for a phony. When we are not genuine, it can be written all over us. It can cause a fellow crew member or co-worker to distrust us, which creates a weak link in the team’s functioning and chemistry. The inner GPS will not accept inauthentic inputs; they are not compatible.
So there are the principles for the “G” in our inner GPS. This system will work for us and serve us well if we feed it the right energy. Conflicting entries will challenge the system and make accurate positioning questionable. It is our own operator error that is the cause of the confusion and we always have the ability to make corrections. Next month we’ll get into the “P” words.
Enjoy the Voyage..
Capt. Rob Gannon is a 30-year licensed captain, and certified life and wellness coach (www.yachtcrewcoach.com). Comments are welcome below.