Cy Wakeman’s Ditch the Drama

What would “great” look like?

It’s a question that Cy Wakeman asks her staff and her clients. She asks the question because the average person spends 2.5 hours per day in drama.

She identifies three sources of drama –

  • I hired it
  • I allowed it
  • I am it

Most of us don’t want to admit we are a source of drama, but if we look closely, we’ll likely discover we play a role.

To help individuals overcome the drama, Cy leads a digital 30-day “Ditch the Drama” program, which I recently completed for the second time. I find it inspirational and a good reminder of how important it is to step up. Last year, my team participated.

SympathyPart of ditching the drama includes learning resilience, which you develop by facing a challenge instead of blaming your circumstances.

She encourages leaders to use empathy and not sympathy with their teams. “Sympathy soothes the ego by agreeing with its narration and assigning blame,” Cy said. “Empathy bypasses ego, shares an observed reality, and makes a call to greatness.”

EmpathyAnother point she emphasized is to separate the facts from your story. Too often we make up stories about our reality, and those stories cause suffering.

To overcome drama, Cy said individuals should —

  • Expand their network
  • Explore what’s exhausting them
  • Reflect
  • Say yes to new opportunities.

In meetings, she encouraged individuals to add their expertise and not their opinions. “Opinions are often used to stop the action and talk about why it won’t work,” she said.

She also said it’s important to recognize the reality of our constraints and to stop enabling poor behavior.

Another point she made is to choose to be engaged. “What is one thing I could do to help right now?” she asked.

The 30-Day Challenge is not easy, and it’s easy to misstep or step down. That’s when Cy encourages us to redirect our energy.

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