According to various reputable sources a business will hire 80% of all its problems. That means that the remaining 20% doesn’t have to do with people. That is an alarming thought. What is even more interesting is that these people are qualified to do the jobs they are hired for. (read more…)
But all of us have one thing in common. We get to choose our response. That’s where we develop the art of building our response muscles to where we can meet a situation successfully because we are response-able.
But the first step to becoming response-able is to understand that if you think the problem is out there then that is the problem. As long as you are outer directed by situations or other directed by people as your primary means to get through life then you will have a problem being response-able and changing your life for the better.
When you choose to be inner directed you understand that there are problems out there but that you have a choice in how to respond. You have self-awareness. In the middle of how we are thinking or doing things we can change. That puts us at the top of the food chain.
All animals operate by instinct and react to certain cues. Only when they are trained will they react differently. For example, when a zebra sees that a Lion is about to attack it, the zebra doesn’t stop to think about how it is going to handle the situation differently. It doesn’t say to itself, “Wait a minute, maybe I can think of a better response than what I have used before.” It runs. And if it is lucky, with enough of a lead, it runs fast enough to escape.
One of the keys to success and happiness is to realize that you are response-able. That you have direct control over yourself and that with self-awareness you can choose your response. And as you become better at being response-able you increase your ability to take on greater responsibility and to grow into your potential which leads to a growing inner feeling of success, satisfaction and happiness.
Be response-able and take responsibility!
- Always Be Positive
Are you the one who brightens the room? Do you add to conversations? Or do you focus on negative things and hog the air time in conversations? When the opportunity comes to talk negatively about someone, turn it down. It leaves an amazingly positive lasting impression on others. Let your reputation and your brand become those of positivity, grace and class.
- Recognize Others
When you walk into a room have the attitude of “There you are” toward others. Too often, a person walks into a room and his or her attitude is one of “Here I am.” To be good at recognizing others we can learn a lesson from dogs. A dog makes you feel great because it greets you with a “There you are!” attitude. The dog gives you recognition and acknowledges your presence. With people we need to do the same thing and also find things to appreciate and acknowledge them for. Be a good finder. Find something good in others and compliment, congratulate or acknowledge them. When you are busy giving others recognition you don’t need any yourself.
Most people are after getting….and they wonder why they don’t. Look for ways to contribute, provide, help, offer and assist. This goes back to what Zig Ziglar said is the golden rule of relationships. “you can get everything in life that you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.
Give first or give often or give last or give first, often and last. Regardless practice give, give, give. The result will be many deposits of good will in your relational bank account. Interestingly, the more you deposit into someone’s bank account the more valuable you are to them.
This will keep most of your relationships on the positive side of the ledger. Are there times when you will make withdrawals? Yes. But when you build up a surplus of good will complaints very often turn into requests for better communication and service. Build a surplus of wealth in your personal bank accounts by making a good first impression and subsequently by making more good impressions.
Deposit as much as you can and as often as you can. To make that great first impression, keep these three points in mind.
- Always be positive
- Recognize others
Build your reputation on seeking to help, give, assist, empower and support. In return, as Zig Ziglar promises, you will GET everything you want in life.
Your first paragraph, sketch, formula, sample or concept isn’t going to be amazing. Your tenth one might not be either.
Confronted with the gap between your vision of perfect and the reality of what you’ve created, the easiest path is no path. Shrug. Admit defeat. Hit delete.
Of course, the only path to amazing runs directly though not-yet-amazing. But not-yet-amazing is a great place to start, because that’s where you are. For now.
There’s a big difference between not settling and not starting.” – Seth Godin
Building on the thought between not settling and not starting…….If you never start nothing happens. Once you start something then you can decide on the level for not settling. The only way to get to “amazing” is to start at “not yet amazing.”
Starting is the key to any “amazing” endeavor. One person almost starts a project. The other person starts it. One person almost finishes a project. Another person finishes it. One person almost passes a test. Another person passes it. What’s the message?
You must start something. You must finish it. And if you don’t like the results then you won’t settle for them. When you decide you won’t settle, you start again with the goal to finish at a higher level.
Start with “not yet amazing” and start the process. Finish what you are doing. Evaluate the results. If necessary, repeat the process. This is the road that will take you from “not yet amazing” to “amazing.”
You can learn from your own mistakes. You can learn from the mistakes or others. That is usually less expensive and time consuming. You can learn from what you read. You can learn from plays, music, books and what you watch on TV.
Jim Rohn has some intriguing insights into education and learning.
“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”
For too many the education stops when they get out of school. Yes, people learn things as they go along the time line of life. But, more often than not, unlike school, there is no focus or purpose other than to just get by.
If you had the “just get by” mentality in school then you ran a greater risk of failure. The same is true for life. Learn enough to “just get by” and the grades for your life will be C’s, D’s and possibly a large number of F’s.
All of us will get C’s, D’s and F’s at times in life. But if you put your focus on learning how to live a better life the C’s, D’s and F’s will be fewer and the A’s and B’s will be more numerous.
You may have learned how to earn well. But have you learned to live well? Embrace self-education throughout your life and you will learn how to live well. When you learn how to live well you will embrace the truth that life is a ticket to the greatest show on earth. All you need is a focus on self-education to get on the stage, enjoy the acts and to leave a rich legacy to others of how to live well. That is your fortune.
True because it worked. In times of change, though, most of the tried is in fact, false.
False because what used to work, doesn’t, at least not any longer.
Sure, it might be what you’ve always done. But that doesn’t make it true, or right, or best. It just means that you already tried it.
The nature of revolutions is that they destroy the perfect and enable the impossible.
The vinyl record was tried and true. The corded telephone was tried and true. The 8 track player was tried and true. The VHS cassette was tried and true. They are now tried and false. Now you can use your cell phone or tablet computer to do all of these things. You can listen to music. You can talk on it. And you can watch movies.
Tried and true does become tried and false. The companies who staked their business model on these things never changing are no longer around. The pace of change in our world is incredibly fast. As humans we have had more change in the last 50 years than since the dawn of man.
Here’s the take away. Change is inevitable. Growth is optional. This used to be a tried and true statement. In some manner it still is. But, if you decide growth is optional business and life will pass you by leaving you with a sense of emptiness and frustration. Then this statement becomes tried and false.
Here is the new tried and true. Embrace change and you will experience growth and a greater satisfaction and fullness in business and life because you will remain relevant in a fast changing world. Becoming irrelevant is being unhappy. That is a tried and true statement. And that will never change.
Watching any professional perform is one of the most satisfying experiences in life. It makes no difference what the professional is doing; they fascinate you with their skill and precision.
Some of the other officers who did attend the fire college and left with high marks had no idea of how to lead people. Scotty was a leader; he knew how to draw the best out of his people. He was a pro.
Watch professional ice skaters, they leave you with your heart in your mouth as they go into some of their jumps and yet they land with ease. You would almost believe they were born with skates on their feet.
Watch the professional assistants. They move with the same calm and assurance that the gold medal skater does.
The professional sales person is poetry in motion. They go through their presentation calm and confident, overcoming objections, leave with the order and you never even heard them close the sale.
Professionals are a joy to watch. How did they become so good or should I say great?
They did little things in a great way every day.
They work towards being their very best, regardless. They know that amateurs compete with other people, professionals compete with themselves. They study, practice, simulate every move, every day – many times. They want to be better today than they were yesterday.
Professionals stay that way over time because they understand something else. They understand that change is inevitable, but growth is optional. In order to master the changes, that come along during a career, and remain professional and at the top of their field they must embrace the personal growth necessary to master the change.
Every professional is open to personal growth and learning how to master change to remain at the top of their field.
You have the feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
Any direction you choose.
From Dr. Suess book “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”
Dr. Suess was right in “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”
You have the brains in your head.
You have the feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
Any direction you choose.
Lasting success starts from the inside out and comes when you steer yourself in the direction of becoming all that you can be.
Many years ago there was a survey done of thousands of people. The survey wanted to find out what percentage of people were positive thinkers. Interestingly, almost everyone said they were a positive thinker. Yet, when you got into the details of the survey and dug down it turned out that ninety percent of the people were in truth, positive wishers. Positive wishing is the formula for, “not much is happening around here.”
Only ten percent of the people were positive thinkers. Why? They were the only ones who took their positive thinking, and had the discipline to build a bridge of action to make a focused effort to turn their positive thinking into reality. Develop the discipline of “doing” and you will be pleased with the results of your positive thinking.
One person almost starts a project. Another person starts it. One person almost finishes a project. The other person finishes it. Failure can come from not taking action, in this case, getting started. It can come from not taking enough action to complete a project. Or it can come from taking the wrong action such as having an accident because we failed to stop at the red light.
If we fail, which we will, the formula for success demands that we take more action. It asks us to be creative and find a way that works. As Jim Rohn said, the miracle of the soil and the seed didn’t happen because of affirmation. It happened because someone took the action to plant the seed. Keep planting and you are taking the action for success. Your seeds won’t always find fertile ground. But when they do, you will reap a bountiful harvest.
Three assets you can build are:
Seth Godin offers some more insights that can help you get where you want to go.
“Think about the individual, the entrepreneur or the small organization that has built up trust with a given market, that has permission to talk to that market and that has the expertise to execute on what it promises…. Once you have those three, you call the shots. If, on the other hand, you’re merely a hard-working employee, doing what you’re told, you’re never going to get what your effort ought to produce.
Other assets companies can build include processes or machinery and a loyal and talented workforce. Individuals, though, can pay attention to, protect and amplify the first three as they do their work. They don’t take care of themselves, because there’s always pressure to trade them in for short-term rewards.
One of the biggest changes the connection economy has brought is that assets are no longer reserved for companies and organizations. Now that everyone has the an ability to own a slice of the attention paid to media, now that everyone can build and nurture a network, assets are no longer off limits to people who work for a living.
Your choice: intentionally build and nurture your assets, or ignore them in the pursuit of the next thing…..”
In today’s fast paced hurry up world it is easy to move onto the next thing and not build and nurture our assets. The adventure that is success requires that we build and nurture our assets. Too often, in looking for newness or the next sure thing we stop nurturing what we have. As long as you are creating newness in nurturing and building your assets then the adventure that is success is much more likely to create the pathways to the business and life you desire.
But the most important assets are not the ones that you buy. They are the ones that you build because they allow you to use the ones that you buy.
Your brand. A brand isn’t a logo. It’s a promise and an expectation. When you over deliver, you earn trust, trust that can bring you repeat business, access to new opportunities and the privilege of being able to count on your customers coming back.
Permission. The privilege of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to the people who want to get them. People who would miss you if you were gone.
Expertise. You might lose your job, but they can’t take away what you’ve learned. If all you’ve done is what you’ve done before, you might get paid but didn’t earn an asset.
In just three words, then, there’s the huge chasm between the trusted, experience freelancer, the one you’re happy to hear from when she has a new idea, and the newbie or the short-term maximizer. Those guys have to start from scratch, each and every time.
To be continued next week….
Gilbert Arland has a quotation that gives a good perspective on what it takes to be a leader. “When an archer misses the mark he turns and looks for the fault within himself. Failure to hit the bull’s-eye is never the fault of the target. To improve your aim, improve yourself.”
Are you on target when it comes to responsibility? Do others see you as a finisher? Do people look to you to carry the ball in pressure situations? Are you known for excellence? If you haven’t been performing at the highest level, you may have been dodging your responsibilities. The consequences for you and those around you will keep the team from functioning at optimal efficiency and effectiveness. To get started on the right track now begin by cultivating a stronger sense of responsibility.
He encouraged her to focus on health. This was difficult to do after focusing for years on sickness. Yet amazing things started happening over time. She had always worked out. But she now incorporated into her routine what I call cheeseburger and beer therapy. After years of being fearful of any meat and alcohol, she now on occasion would have a cheeseburger and beer, something she had enjoyed in her twenties. Interestingly, over time her health improved and outside of the occasional cold or allergy the sickness that was part of her life is gone.
Our mental health is the most important component to our physical and emotional well being. It is too easy to think we are on a good course with our behavior, yet we are drifting off course and bringing more of what we don’t want into our lives because of the wrong mental focus. Check yourself. What are you focused on? If you have areas where it is negativity and scarcity see if you can start focusing on the positive and abundance. You will love the positive effect that it will have in your relationships, your business and your life, not to mention your health.
The key is to become what you must be in order to attract what you desire. And when you attract what you desire you need very little. Why? Because you understand that whatever you desire first has to be internalized, believed and manifested from within in becoming the person you want to be for those things to be attracted to you that will fulfill that desire.
Listen to the small voice inside that is guiding you on your success path. Very often it is hard to hear among the loud promptings of failure that you hear from outside sources.
Trust yourself and take the risk. If you are wrong and fall flat on your face at least your face down experience will cause you to face up to what you need to do to be successful.
After all, we are not judged by the number of times we fail, but by the number of times we succeed. And the number of times we succeed is in direct proportion to the number of times we can fail and keep trying. Failure is in the performance, not the performer.
The following comes from Seth Godin considered to be one of the foremost thinkers on a variety of subjects from business to personal.
“So the first, most important question is, “who do we want to change?” If you can’t answer this specifically, do not proceed to the rest. By who, I mean, “give me a name.” Or, if you can’t give me a name, then a person, a tribe, a spot in the hierarchy, a set of people who share particular worldviews. People outside this group should think you’re crazy, or at the very least, ignore you.
Then, be really clear about:
What does he already believe?
What is he afraid of?
What does he think he wants?
What does he actually want?
What stories have resonated with him in the past?
Who does he follow and emulate and look up to?
What is his relationship with money?
What channel has his permission? Where do messages that resonate with him come from? Who does he trust and who does he pay attention to?
What is the source of his urgency—why will he change now rather than later?
After he has changed, what will he tell his friends?
Now that you know these things, go make a product and a service and a story that works. No fair changing the answers to the questions to match the thing you’ve already made (you can change the desired audience, but you can’t change the truth of what they want and believe).
Dogs have a protocol for playtime. When they’re ready to play, they stick their butts in the air, plop their front legs on the ground and prick up their ears. Take some time out of your day to unwind, but take the necessary steps to ensure that it’s scheduled productive play, not simply a waste of time.
Assemble your pack. The most successful people are those who surround themselves with a network of colleagues, mentors and good friends. And if you don’t want to catch any fleas, a good place to start is to surround yourself with people whose habits you would like rubbed off on you.
“There are two kinds of people—those who come in a room and say, ‘Well, here I am’ or those that come in a room and people say “There you are.” Dogs are great at making us feel needed and valued, a trait we should learn to pass on to coworkers, employees or family.
Enjoy the simpler things in life. Whether it’s taking the time to sniff the flowers or enjoying the wind in a car ride, dogs have a genuine appreciation for the tiniest joys found in life. Take a page from our canine friends by looking for or treating yourself to something that makes you smile.
There is a lesson. Learn to use the seasons of life. Decide when to pour it on and when to ease back, when to take advantage and when to let things ride. It’s easy to keep going from nine to five year in and year out and lose a natural sense of priorities and cycles. Don’t let one year blend into another in a seemingly endless parade of tasks and responsibilities. Keep your eye on your own seasons, lest you lose sight of value and substance.” – Jim Rohn
As you move along the time line of life know your priorities and your seasons. Spring can come many times in a life time as can summer, fall and winter. Know where you are at and adjust accordingly. If we choose to give our life to one thing, very often our work, we get to experience a splinter off the block of wood that is life and no more. This is sad. There is so much to the experience that is life.
Know your seasons. Know your priorities. Time is the only thing we can spend and never get back. Life isn’t a practice session. There are no do overs. But the good news is that you can always start over.
–Bob Moawad —
Yet, in the rest of life learning when to quit and how to quit are essential skills that must be developed to have the growth we desire.
The truth is, that unlike the trees in nature that shed their leaves every year, we as human beings have been given a choice. Very often we end up holding onto or staying involved with people, things or organizations that are pulling us down, not lifting us up.
Yes, almost everyone has something or someone they would like to limit or delete. Take a look at your business and life and quit those things that aren’t working. It could be ideas that you have, processes you are involved with, a way of thinking or a relationship.
Regardless, you must master the art of quitting in order to grow. As the tree would tell you, it is impossible to grow when you are holding onto the old that is no longer working for you.
Become a quitter. If you look around, the most successful people know how to practice the art of quitting and make it part of their businesses and lives. Quitting is the first step to personal growth. When you quit you are saying I am ready for something new. I am ready to be challenged. I am ready to grow.
Going back to the quotation by Napoleon Hill: Quit not because something is hard and takes time. If you are on the right road to success persistence is the necessary ingredient.
Look at all areas of your business and life and find the roads that are leading nowhere. Only when you quit traveling down these roads will you be ready to be open to more of the possibilities that life has to offer.
- What we know—Our Personal Philosophy
- How we feel—Our Attitude
- Our Activity—What we do with, and about, all that we feel and all that we know
- Assets – Adjust the philosophy and attitude. It may be necessary to change the seed and the soil and more likely than not – the sower.
- Look at what we have become. Everything that we have acquired is a result of past efforts and past thoughts.
money and it doesn’t come with fame. It comes from having a
meaning in your life, doing what you love and being passionate
about what you do. That’s having a life of success. When you
have the ability to impact people. That’s having a life of
success. That’s what having a life of meaning is.
admire it. Life is a dream, realize it. Life is a challenge,
meet it. Life is a duty, complete it. Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it. Life is sorrow, overcome it.
is a tragedy, confront it. Life is an adventure, dare it. Life
is luck, make it. Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.”
— Mother Teresa
Adjust your sails. Let go of old attitudes and ways of doing things. When you let go of the old can you lead yourself to the new.
— Apple Inc.