Do you think about the way you think?

I do.

Because the way you think can be helpful in solving problems.

Maybe you’ve heard of the term, “Thinking Outside of the Box!”

“Thinking outside of the box” is a metaphor that means to think differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective.

The origins of the phrase are unclear, but reference is given to John Adair’s puzzle created in 1969. He introduced a traditional topographical puzzle called the nine dots puzzle.

I’ve personally experienced the need to think outside of the box when my health took a nose dive. Only my closest friends know that I have been unwell.

We’d all agree that our wellbeing is strongly linked to happiness and life satisfaction. I’ve always said that if you don’t have your health, you don’t have any … any enjoyment of life.

Twenty eighteen was my annus horribilis.

Now before you spit out your coffee, that’s not a rude word.

It’s Latin for horrible year.

Last year I experienced bouts of extreme fatigue. I’d literally spend four hours a day resting in my bedroom. I could barely manage to see clients and struggled with domestic/mum duties.

I wasn’t an unbalanced Life Balance Coach, but a Life Balance Coach with NO life!

So to cut a long year short, the diagnosis came back Anaemia and Hypothyroidism.

Very treatable right?

Yes and no. I was a good patient. I took the vitamins, rested, medication, but I still felt exhausted.

According to my final blood test I was back to normal, but yet little changed?

Whilst there’s no teaching manual to think outside the box, I believe that Edward De Bono, the inventor and psychologist paved the way when he coined the phrase Lateral Thinking. He encouraged us to look beyond our predictable thought habits i.e. outside our usual thinking patterns (something I talk further in 5 Keys to Breaking Bad Habits) and think creatively.

So I started to think creatively looking holistically at the 7 key areas of my life i.e. home, money, life purpose, work, friends, romance and health. Beyond the physical to the mental, social and emotional factors. I bought a contour pillow, turned off the WI-FI at night, ate less at dinner and drank herb tea.

What could be contributing to my fatigue?

Ummm just as my clients have blind spots, I felt there was a contributing factor out of my awareness.

Then it hit me at 2am!!!

No not an idea, but 9 kgs of dog on my thigh. Buddy’s tossing and turning was regularly waking me from a deep sleep.

FYI – Dogs are pack animals. They are use to sleeping on top of each other because that’s when they feel most secure and comfortable – snuggled up against their littermates.

Now comes the thinking outside of the box …

So after some creative thinking, I built a wall, not of Trump steel, but 5 pillows placed down my bed as a buffer to his flops, snuggles and wriggles.

It’s day three and sadly only a slight improvement, but I remain optimistic that thinking outside of the box will bring me closer to ending my tiredness.

So my invitation is this, next time you encounter a problem, look at it from all angles and relationships. It’s important to keep calm and don’t discount anything as unrelated or unconnected.

Productivity, innovation and creativity start to happen when we stop thinking in one direction, and that’s because solving problems requires you to think widely, deeply, and differently.

life coach sydney, stuck in a rut, Fiona CraigFiona Craig is an NLP practitioner & life coach, psychotherapist, business mentor, and published author of the award winning self-help book, “Stuck in a Rut – How to rescue yourself & live your truth” helping women remove the fear, worry and guilt to confidently take the steps towards creating the life they want to live.

Fiona has been interviewed by The Australian Women’s Weekly, Women’s Fitness Magazine and The New Daily and written articles for Collective Magazine, Herald Sun Melbourne, Sunday Life Magazine, Career One, I Am Woman Magazine, plus Mouths Of Mums and other online publications. You can learn more about working with Fiona at or call 0405 433 217.

Blog Image:Can Stock Photo / faithie