THE STRATEGY OF FLIPPING
As the legendary fictional character Tom Sawyer did so eloquently in American literature, the Strategy of Flipping intends to take something undesirable and flip it into something desirable. To take something you don’t want and flip it into something you do want. To flip a shortcoming into a talent. The Strategy of Flipping is arguably the most beautiful of all Omdenken strategies because it deals with such a common theme in human life: enountering and transforming the undesirable.
In order to make the Strategy work, the problem you are having needs to become the intention in the first place. It sounds a difficult proposition, and indeed it is, but from nearly any disaster, a possibility can rise.
Check out these various forms and examples:
The first form could be referred to as “reframing”. In other words, the factual situation does not change, but you simply change the frame, or context. The Scottish psychiatrist Ronald David Laing once helped a patient suffering from insomnia by reframing his problem, “think about how many people suffer from their regular sleeping patterns. They spend 8 hours a day doing nothing!” The patient suddenly realized the benefits to his insomnia and, as a result, ended up sleeping better.
Super Heroes Helping Sick Kids
An excellent example of the Strategy of Flipping can be seen in the partnership between Advertising Agency JWT Brazil and The A.C. Camargo Cancer Center. The two parties were looking for a way to help children deal with the depressing experience of chemotherapy. The doctors discovered that the way children perceived chemotherapy made a big difference. The medicine was the medicine and it had to be administered through an IV bag and a tube. That part couldn’t be changed. But the way the IV bags looked could be changed dramatically. The hospital staff began putting the medicine into IV bags that were printed in the colors and logo of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern. Children suddenly began to feel they were being helped by superheroes. It made the kids happier throughout the process of chemotherapy.
It takes courage, practice, and optimism to see a problem as an opportunity, but this very act is the foundation of all things Omdenken. Words have power, and the way we tell ourselves what we see and experience has a profound impact. Take a stab at seeing your problems, shortcomings, and disasters as a new possibility and your experience of life will be transformed.