metabolizing a situation

By January 16, 2012Leadership

This morning I finished reading Henry Cloud’s book “Necessary Endings.”  Let me rephrase that: I came to the end of the book this morning and I’m already re-reading it.  Some books are like that.

One of the last concepts he talks about in the book is the idea of metabolizing a situation, experience, or outcome.  The idea is simple.  In physical terms, our bodies take in two types of foods: useful and wasteful.  Useful food gets digested and put to work.  Wasteful foods get processed and left behind.  While the thought of creating a more graphic visual is enticing, I will leave it at that.

Healthy people metabolize well.

Healthy organizations metabolize well.

Healthy relationships metabolize well.

The problem is … outside of the physical manifestation of metabolism, most of us never do it.  We experience a setback and don’t take the time to dissect what went right and what went wrong.  We experience a traumatic event and don’t reflect on what we learned and what we hope to avoid in the future.  We hit a home run and forget all the little pieces that went into a larger success.

In terms of negative experiences, a failure to properly metabolize a situation almost always puts us on the track of repeating it in the future.

How is your metabolism?