Hello! In this blog post, I’d like to share an extract from my award-winning book “A-Z Pearls of Wisdom” on how to effectively use “feedback-to-self” as a development tool.  If you enjoy this read, remember you can order my book from Amazon (e-reader version is available too) or I can bring copies with me if you’d like to hear me speak at your next event.   Happy reading and learning everyone!

How to use ‘Feedback-to-self’ as a development tool

F is for Feedback-to-self and Focus (not Flibbertigibbet)

(An extract from the award-winning book “A-Z Pearls of Wisdom for Executive PAs” produced with kind permission from the author Lindsay Taylor)

I really do like the sound of that word: Flibbertigibbet. It’s eccentric and flighty and has an onomatopoeic quality.  However, I most certainly do not like it when I become that word – a flibbertigibbet flitting from one thing to the next, a bit of this, a bit of that (without completing or achieving anything in full!). I know when it happens too… .when my “to do” list extends to more than one A4 page, when my inbox is full of unopened and unread messages when I have deadlines to meet, when I glance at my watch and see that I’m “running out of time”… then.   My flitting, scatter-brained and unfocused flibbertigibbet self is far from productive. For me, this is a prime “Feedback –to-Self and Focus” moment.

My first bit of Feedback to Self is “well done”! Well done for recognising that this is what is happening (and for being honest with myself!). Having awareness of what’s going on in a situation – what’s happening for you – is a Great Thing. Because once you have awareness you can then take ownership of the situation and you have the choice and opportunity available to you to change the situation (for the better of course!).

With awareness comes opportunity. And with opportunity comes change.  

A great model to use for Feedback-to-Self and Focus is the ABC model, the basis of which lies in asking great questions of yourself (and answering them honestly!)

A – Antagonist

What specifically is it that has happened to make me behave this way? What can I do to eliminate or change this Antagonist in the future? (and remember the belief “if you can’t change something, change the way you think about it”!)

B – Behaviour

What behaviour am I exhibiting? How helpful is this behaviour? What could I be doing more of? What could I be focusing more on? What could I be doing less of? What could I be focusing less on? What could I stop doing? What could I stop focusing on? What could I start doing? What could I start focusing on? What could I continue doing?

What could I continue focusing on? What have I done in the past that has worked in a similar situation? What have I focused on in the past that has worked in a similar situation? What resources do I have available to me? What do I need to Focus on that is Urgent? What do I need to Focus on that is Important? (Thank you Stephen Covey!) What do I need right now?

C – Consequence

What is it I want (or need) to achieve? What is the consequence of my current behaviour? How useful is this consequence? What would a better consequence be? What do I want (or need) the consequence to be?

“If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves”   Thomas Edison

This a guest post from Lindsay Taylor, Founder of Your Excellency. If you would like to purchase A-Z Pearls of Wisdom for Executive PAs please follow this link. 


How to use 'Feedback-to-self' as a development tool

You may also like