Posts Taged goal-setting

Weekend Love, September Twenty-Fifth

iStock_000004751590Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

Sometimes we don’t see ourselves as others see us (you think?).  Madeline Homan Blanchard offers some insights in My Boss Called Me a Drama Queen: Ask Madeleine.

Ever want to do something and couldn’t figure out what?  Life coach Jessica Sweet offers 5 Fun Things To Do When You Are Bored With Life.

I knew it all along: Babies Are Trying to Manipulate You Into Smiling at Them.

After watching many of the political arguments playing right now (am I being cynical?) I found it very refreshing that there is an organization devoted to helping leaders understand what it means to be truthful.  How are you doing on yours?  Lee Ellis, Founder & President of Leadership Freedom LLC, has his say when he writes On Leadership and Telling the Truth: Three Foundational Ways to Avoid Lying.

I spend a lot of time as a coach helping supporting people who want happiness in one form or another.  I couldn’t stop myself from reading this article written by Sherry Amatenstein on Vox news this last week: Everyone wants to be happy. Almost everyone is going about it wrong.

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Weekend Love, September Fifth

iStock_000042621008Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

When confronted with change, our first reactions range from head-in-the-sand to raging battles.  Susan Fowler asks three of the best questions for a situation like that when she writes about Thriving in the Midst of Change: Ask 3 Questions.

The opening paragraph starts, “Fascinating leaders ask questions. The rest are dullards.”  How can you not want to read the article?  Join Dan Rockwell as he answers that age-old question about How to Become a Fascinating Leader.

I know that I am not the poster child for exercise and fitness.  I do that stuff, and hate it.  Mark Sisson finally explains why.  If you are like me, you can read how you got to this state and ways to get out of it in his article on Why Getting Fit Isn’t the Best Exercise Motivation (and 10 Better Reasons to Move Today).

Bonus Video:  Brian Tracy and his daughter, Christina, discuss his new book , Find your Balance Point.  It’s a great discussion about the stuff we know but don’t do on topics like harmony, being grounded, and working from your passion.  Enjoy The Secret to Finding Balance in Your Life.

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Weekend Love, August Twenty-Ninth

iStock_000065250231Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

I spoke with the Plano, Texas Chamber of Commerce this last week about time management.  I’m not sure there is a more fitting topic for a coach to address.

I always start from the perspective that there isn’t enough time for everything, but there is enough time for the important things. Here are three of the articles that helped shape my thinking.

How do you compare earning money to other options?  Frank Sonnenberg askes eight questions to get to the answer.  His questions can be found in the article, 8 Reasons Why Money’s Not Worth What You Think.

Grace Bluerock has worked in hospice care for the last six years.  Here are Five Life Lessons I Learned from the Dying.

Did you know the phrase “work-life balance” didn’t show up until the mid-80’s.  Before that it was “work-leisure balance.” The difference shifts your thinking a bit, doesn’t it?  Read more from Eric Devaney in Should You Strive for Work/Life Balance? The History of the Personal & Professional Divide.

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Four Tiny Habits for Successful People

tiny habitsOne of the old clichés that we’ve all heard is that “The devil is in the details.”  That is really true when it comes to the habits of successful people.  You might think the differences between successful and unsuccessful people have to do with large chunks of their lives.  On the contrary, success is generated from little things that are built into habits.  Here are four of the important ones.

Successful people plan.  Successful people might not have a to-do list, but you can bet on them creating a top priorities list before they go to bed or very soon after they get up.  Setting goals and accomplishing tasks is a daily activity.  While they may have several items to “work on” they will have 2-3 top prorities to accomplish every day.

Successful people focus. They don’t multitask.  If anything, the opposite is true.  They compartmentalize.  Work is on one thing at a time.  There is a focus on the task-at-hand.

Success people read.  Reading is a habit that forces you to step away from doing and become mental (in a good way).  Reading gives you new ideas and connects old ones in new permutations.  Listen to someone you consider successful on YouTube or live.  You will hear several references to what they are reading or have recently read.

Successful people spend time away from work.  They unplug.  No one on their death bed says, “I wish I had spent that free weekend at the office.”  Successful people know that.  They spend time with loved ones in leisure activities.  When work is demanding, leisure may come in small bites, but it is there.

Think about two of the most successful people that you know well.  What are the little things that they do often?  Spend a little time making a list that can become delightful details for success.

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Weekend Love, April Twenty-fifth

iStock_000034498990Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently.  This handful of links takes you to tools or great content.  Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file that hits my mood.

If you were working too hard on April 22 to celebrate Earth Day, then I hope you feel guilty enough to watch a video or two from Ted Talks to help you celebrate this weekend.

Essential Oils are one of the hot new products in direct sales.  Mark Sisson shares some research about the truth of the claims in his well-researched article on Essential Oils: Separating Fact from Fiction.

Gallup Management recently reported that Only 35% of U.S. Managers Are Engaged in Their Jobs.  The good news that if the manager is engaged, so is the team.  You can reach some easy conclusions about your work as well.

You need to sit down with a cup of coffee and read this article from Frank Sonnenberg like a fresh cup of fine roast.  He writes about Now or Never but it doesn’t mean quite what you think it does.

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Creating Your Summer Game Plan

Coaching summer plansIs it too early to be thinking about summer plans on tax day?  I had a coaching call this week with an entrepreneur and that’s what she wanted to discuss. For her, June was a major month for convention, travel, vacation, and kid-out-of-school-time and she wanted to be prepared.   I had my AHA before the call was done:  If you are an entrepreneur, it’s not too soon!  While we usually think about an intensive work time before and after a summer break, the entrepreneur has more to do than just the immediate tasks.

Whether you are in direct sales or some other business, as an entrepreneur your planning needs to go beyond a two-or three week period.  Think about direct selling, for example.  The people who join your team now will really be hitting their sales stride around late June.  The work you do in the summer will set the stage for your fall selling season.  Since you are in business for yourself, you need to constantly engage in high level planning.

During our coaching call, six core questions absorbed most of our time.  I wanted to share them with you as you start thinking about your summer.

  1. How up to date is your calendar? She was like most of us.  Her schedule was very complete for April, mainly complete for May and June, and then sketchy after that.  While June was her key month, she came to the realization she needed to be thinking about work for post-June.
  2. What business goals do you want to accomplish this summer? She had a clear vision.  Many of her summer goals center on building business relationships through follow-up from the conventions.
  3. What are the most important things you need to do now to prepare for June? This turned out to be a very important question. As she talked through the answer, her accomplishments in the next two weeks will make a lot of difference.
  4. What do your stakeholders need to know? While she thought a lot about his business, she hadn’t gotten to thinking about what her clients expectations are going from now to the end of June.  This will be the topic of several conversations between her and her clients before the summer.
  5. What do your contractors need to know? Like the previous question, she hadn’t talked with her support team and needed to bring them into the loop on her plans and work requirements for the next few months.
  6. What do you need to do to fill your fall pipeline? She realized that with a time lag of 90-120 days from starting the sales process to her first payment, her October-November business depends on starting in July. This is a new awareness and shifts her July business focus a bit.

How about you?  Are you thinking at a high level about your summer and fall business?  If you were, how will things change?

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Why Work at Self-Improvement?

Playing at workUnless your goal is to gain 100 pounds and become a couch potato, self-improvement is probably a good thing for your future.  The real question is not whether you should create change in your life, but what you should call the process of creating change in your life:  Should you call it work or should you call it play?

The word “work” creates a mindset that isn’t always the most productive.  Say, for example, you want to be more productive on the phone; you want to make more calls and close more sales.  When you call it work, you suck all of the energy out of the project.  Before you can start, you have to create a plan, set goals, block time for it, and make sure nothing is going to interrupt you.  You are fearful of failing and falling short of your goal, so your commitment isn’t whole-hearted.  Roughly two-thirds of American workers are not engaged in their work.  The same malaise may be affecting your commitment to work at self-improvement.

Now think about playing at self-improvement.  Let’s go back to our example of phone productivity.  Your commitment becomes one of jumping right in.  You check with others to see what they’ve been doing.  You want to try several options (time of day, number of dials before stopping, text before calls, etc.) to see what works.  You change from doing to learning.  Isn’t that what self-improvement is all about?  You want to learn a better way.  You are willing to risk more because you don’t care about failure.  You care about playing a better game the next time.

At the end of the day, when you play at improving, you are likely to get better results that when you work at it.  Isn’t that the name of the game?

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Weekend Love, April Fourth

camoflage hugHere are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently.  Most will be a handful of links to tools or great content.  Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file that hits my mood.

Four questions to make you go “hmmn.”  The title of Karyn Greenstreet’s article says it all: How Will You Know That You’re Successful, When You Don’t Know What It Looks Like?

At its simplest, coaching is about questions and answers.  Questions that make us think and answers that lead us forward.  Racheal Govender explains Why Coaching works.

Have anything in self-storage?  How about a piece of you?  David Emerald and Donna Zajonc, MCC write about Coming Out of Self Storage.

Best quotation of the week comes from Mark Sisson, “At its best, self-control doesn’t revolve around deprivation, denial or chastising but clarity, intention, and attunement.”  This powerful idea is explored in Self-Control: The Ultimate Exercise in Freedom.

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Weekend Love, February Twenty First

Link loveHere are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently.  Most will be a handful of links to tools or great content.  Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file that hits my mood.

I think we all will have situations that feed our indecisiveness.  The Paid to Exist blog explores an alternative in The Mantra of the World’s Greatest Influencers.

John Hester, in the Blanchard LeaderChat weighs in on those dreaded employee performance talks.  His view may surprise you as he writes When It Comes to Performance Management, Employees Want More, Not Less!  While direct selling leaders don’t perform employee management functions, I think you’ll find his solution fits your world as well.

Any good lawyer will tell you that the questions you ask shape the questions. Coaches know this as well.  Here’s an alternative for your self-questions from the Power of TED* as they urge you to Ask a Better Question.

The real value of Facebook is in Groups.  Chris Brogan weighs in on this topic in his article, Remember When I Said I Quit Facebook?

From the archives:  Entrepreneur Magazine recommends that you Quit Facebook.  Here are six good reasons to give it up for your business and your personal life.  This seems harsh, but if you can’t set boundaries, maybe stopping cold turkey is the way to go.

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Change Your Habits in 2015

chocolate barsIf you are like most of us, you made a resolution or two to start the New Year.  If you were like me, you probably made a wish and then gave a thought or two of planning an action step crossed your mind.  The sad news is that there is very little likelihood that anything worthwhile will come from your resolution.  One researcher found that by the end of January, 30 percent of us would have failed and by the end of June, over half would have gone by the wayside.  Michael Hyatt says that between 150 and 200 million Americans make resolutions and the research shows around 8% succeed with them.

Now about wiping your slate clean and trying something different?  Most of us fail at our resolutions because we plop this idea down in the midst of a lifetime of habits.  So instead of a resolution, think about changing a habit and see if you can be more successful.  Here are five questions to ask yourself.  Your answers will be the pathway to a successful change in 2015.  By the way, whether the habit is having sweet deserts, Facebook, or interrupting people, the process works the same when it comes to changing a habit.  We’re going to talk about sweets, since that is my annual resolution and has been for several years.

  1. What’s the habit I want to change? The more specifically that you identify the habit, the better you will be able to change it. The answer to this question may take some time.  Habits are routines, and most pieces are performed subconsciously.  Take some time to think about your trigger.  In my case, the difficulty is stopping at a meal.  I wanted to go back for second helpings until I developed a habit of having something sweet as a signal to my system that the meal was over.  Now I have a new habit of having desert. (I’m not sure which is worse.)
  2. What’s the replacement for the habit? We can’t create a vacuum in our behaviors or thoughts. We have to find a substitute.  In my case, I decided a healthy sweet would be the way to go.  So what I want to do is have coffee with a sweetener or maybe some dried cranberries.
  3. How do I begin strongly? You can’t just ease into a new habit.  If you ease your way in, you’ll soon find yourself easing your way back out.  Draw a line in the sand.  Say or do things like:

–Announce it to people (more on this later).

–Write it down.

–Set a starting day and time.

–Have a clear new routine. My question used to be, “What’s for dessert?”  Now, it’s “Ready for some coffee?”

  1. How do I stay strong? There is no better way to say it that the old cliché: DO NOT DEVIATE DESPITE TEMPTATION. What will you do when tempted? How will you avoid temptations?
  2. Who will I ask to hold me accountable? If you are a softy, you might want to call this, “Who do I ask for help?” For either question, you are making your behavior change public.  Moreover, once you announce it, you make it hard to retreat.  If you are making a giant change or an unpleasant one, then think about a support team.  There is no limit on the number of supporters you can have.  You might even want to work with a coach if you are talking about a deep-seated habit.  There is some pretty clear research that making public support does very powerful things to your efforts. id

How will you know when your habit is changed?  The answer is that you will know when it feels wrong to not engage in the replacement behavior.  Since I’ve given up on desserts, I feel guilt reaching for one when it’s offered.  That’s a good sign.  Since I’m still tempted, I know I don’t have the new habit in place.

What’s your new habit going to be?

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