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Posts Tagged ‘Belief’

No wonder I haven’t had clarity on how to best make the decision — I’ve been asking the wrong question!

Have you done this? You ask a question, or pray to whatever higher power you appeal to, looking for guidance and direction. When the idea or answer pops into your head –“Boom! There is its!” — you look toward the heavens and say, “Really? Are you sure?!”

Questioning the very response to that which you have been seeking! It’s really kind of comical when you think about it; at least it is to me.

So, I’ve become aware of some training that will allow me to add some additional tools to my coaching tool box, which will help me better serve my clients in achieving greater levels of self-awareness, resulting in higher levels of performance, and achieving whatever it is they endeavor to do. So, I asked the question: Should I or shouldn’t I enroll in this training?

Should I or Shouldn’t I?

The answer to that is obvious isn’t it? It’s either yes, you should, or no, you shouldn’t. Either response can be equally argued for, I’m certain. There are pro’s and con’s to either response, up sides and down sides to every option.

It would be similar to asking “is this the right thing or the wrong thing to do or say?” There will be pro’s and con’s to whatever answer you come up with for that question, as well.

Is this the right thing or the wrong thing to do?

The question I should have asked myself is this: Will taking this action move me closer to my goal? If the answer is “yes,” I should enroll in the course. If the answer is “No,” I should not enroll in the course. It’s truly that simple.

Will taking this action move me closer to my goal?

 

You see, I can talk myself into it and out of it within the same conversation. I can argue with myself about whether it’s a responsible use of my resources, or if I should save them for something else. I can view it from a perspective of scarcity — I have only so much time, energy, and money to invest in growing myself — or from a perspective of abundance — I will grow immeasurably from this experience, serve my clients more fully, therefore growing my financial resources over time as a result of this additional benefit I can offer.

Asking it that way, the answer is obvious. I should enroll in the course, continue to grow, and serve my clients. The only question now is, which location to register for? That one will require a little homework on travel costs!

I hope you now have a new perspective on how to evaluate the many options that appear in your life, especially when you’ve asked for guidance and direction. Rather than questioning the source of the answer you get, consider how doing or not doing whatever it is will serve you in your purpose.

If you don’t know your purpose, you have a different starting point entirely. From personal experience, I highly recommend working with a skilled coach or mentor.

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I’ve been involved in a couple of different situations of late that have brought the principles outlined in the Drama lesson of the Empowerment Mentoring program front and center for me. Follow along, and spend a few minutes reflecting on these thoughts to see if you may be creating some unnecessary drama in your life.

The key principle that is most active around me, recently, is this: Assuming malicious intent from others OR acting with malicious intent. Specifically, assigning motives to others, in the belief that one knows what someone else is trying to accomplish in a given situation, without the benefit of having a conversation with the person to discover what is actually going on.

Have you participated in a relationship in which you made certain assumptions about another person’s motives, that later turned out to be a misunderstanding or misinterpretation? First, it’s human nature to make up stories about what’s going on around us, because we like to have closure and we have a strong need for things to make sense. So, we pull in bits and pieces of information, snatches of conversation, and we make up stories that make sense to us, based on our values, beliefs, and life experiences. This doesn’t mean that the stories we come up with are based in reality, only that they make sense to us. The problem here is the stories we concoct are often far from the truth…simply because we are missing key facts.

The other consideration is that Intent does NOT equal Impact! It’s important to consider that there are times when we speak or act  that what we intend to happen is not the outcome we get. What that means is, we are sometimes the author of some of the drama in our lives, because we are not fully self-aware or as intentional as we might be. And we also tend to make assumptions about the intent and behaviors of others in our lives.

If you’re experiencing drama in your life, I encourage you to spend some time in reflection and come to an understanding of the role you are playing in the situation.

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I recently awoke from an odd dream, that got me thinking about how we think and its impact on our lives.

In the dream, I was walking through a train station, filled with people, as you would imagine. There was a young woman (in her 20’s I would guess) asking people for money. She asked a woman who was walking near me for money. The second woman said she didn’t have any cash. The first woman said “That’s ok, your bank is right here. Let’s go in and you can get some.”

Looking a bit bewildered, the second woman was ushered into the bank and I followed (curious to see what would happen next). The woman approached the teller and said she needed some cash from one of her accounts. The first woman, overhearing this — ‘one of her accounts’ — demanded the teller write down the balances in all of the woman’s accounts…presumably so she could determine how much money she could extract from her confused “benefactor.” The teller wrote the amounts out on a chalkboard (yes, things are sometimes strange in dreams!) and the account holder stood there silently, while the first woman decided how much money she should be given. She came up with some number, and the teller began to do what he needed to do, while the second woman looked on.

This was when I felt the need to step in and object. It was a ridiculous scenario to be sure…and it was certainly none of my business what some other person chose to do with their own money.

My objection sprang from the fact that simply giving this young woman money would not solve her problems. When you have a dysfunctional relationship with money, having more of it will not solve anything; you will simply blow through it as you usually do. It’s only when you are able to change your thinking about what money really is — a tool — and how you use it that you are able to make changes in your circumstances.

I felt compelled to explain this to the first young woman, although it would probably have fallen on deaf ears. Here is just one story of a person who came into a cash windfall, and it didn’t miraculously “fix” her life…in fact, it led to a lot of other issues and challenges, and wouldn’t you know, she is no longer a millionaire!

Here’s the bottom line. If you have the yearning to become a millionaire, great! But simply acquiring the money will not make you different. If you focus on the journey and invest in the process, the more important outcome is who you become on the way to earning the money.

It’s the same principle with anything else you desire to achieve, have, do, or be…the wisest people understand it’s not about actually accomplishing the goal, it’s about who you become on your way there. If you truly want to change your life…you must change your thinking. More specifically, you must actually ENGAGE in THINKING, not simply resorting to habitual ways of thinking or allowing others to think for you.

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Live your beliefs and you can turn the world around.  ~Henry David Thoreau*

This is so true; don’t you think? Consider this…how would your life be different today if you hadn’t believed in yourself?

How would your world be different today if other leaders hadn’t believed in their potential, their vision, their mission?

What if:

  • Abraham Lincoln hadn’t believed slaves should be freed?
  • John F. Kennedy, Jr., hadn’t believed a man could walk on the moon?
  • Martin Luther King hadn’t believed in the dream of equality for all?
  • Susan B. Anthony hadn’t believed women should vote?
  • Jonas Salk hadn’t believed polio could be cured?

These are just a few examples; given time, and putting our heads together, we could probably come up with a list that would span countless pages of how others’ (and our own) beliefs have changed our lives, our communities, and our world.

Regardless of what stage of life — and leadership — you may be in, know that the first step you must take to move forward is the believe in yourself, in your dream, and your ability to accomplish it.

Believe and act as if it were impossible to fail.  ~Charles F. Kettering

Do so, and success will surely follow.

Do so, and you will change the lives of more people than you can imagine, at levels you may not even be aware of.

Do so…we need you!

___________

Note: This concludes this 12-month, focused Intentional Leadership journey. Thank you for accompanying me. Remember, it is a journey; even though our study together is ended, it doesn’t mean you must or should stop working through this process. This work, this guide, is archived for you on this site, and you are welcome to revisit it — even go through the whole process, or pieces of it, as the need arises — at any time in the future.

*From the Intentional Leadership booklet, by Giant Impact.

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It’s hard to believe, but this will be our last daily post on this Intentional Leadership journey. I will, of course, provide a wrap-up of this month’s focus on Belief, tomorrow…but for today, I’d like to walk you through our Friday ritual one last time.

On this day, I am beginning a new coaching engagement with another John Maxwell Certified coach, and will spend some time learning about the goals and challenges of a colleague on an Advisory Board I am part of, with the intent of understanding how I might add value to her and her team in the new year.

I am preparing for a number of upcoming significant events in my life, including fun, travel, visiting distant family, continuing to work with several mentoring participants, and planning my new year. The fun and travel come first, as I will be at the Chris Isaak Concert with my husband tomorrow night, then off to Washington State on Sunday for some time with my family before the holidays. It won’t be all play, however. This is the beauty of working in my passion zone; I can do it from nearly any location on earth (assuming there’s a cell signal and internet access!) at almost any time of day or night, as my creativity does not live by a “work schedule.”

Again, I will spend a significant amount of time in the coming weeks preparing for the coming new year, following deep reflection on the year we are so close to ending.

I can say with absolute honesty, that Belief is the perfect theme for me to end this Intentional Leadership journey. Without belief in myself, my purpose, my passion, and my plan, I would not be here with you at all. While I know there are many challenges and obstacles ahead, I fully belief I am on the right path, doing what I’m supposed to be doing.

I hope you can say the same for yourself. If you can’t, I strongly encourage you to find a coach or a mentor to help you work through the process of discovering what that path is for you, and then developing a plan for going after it!

In the meantime, how will you spend your weekend? With whom will you spend it?

What is vying for your time, attention, and energy?

What do you have in mind for closing out this year and moving into 2014?

Whatever it is, I hope you’re intentional about it.

Thank you for joining me on this journey; it’s been my pleasure. I hope you’ve learned as much as I have and have moved yourself and your team/organization forward in many ways.

I hope you’ll continue to stop in and read. I have a lot on my mind and will continue to be here writing, sharing thoughts, and asking questions…at least once a week.

If you have questions, comments, and/or topics you would like to explore together, I would love to hear them. Use the comment box below or send me an email.

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Spend some time today with your action plan, from earlier this week, and your calendar. Enter tasks, reminders, and action notes to your calendar — for the next 30 days — to ensure you are acting on your commitment to move forward into your opportunity. Use this, also, to track your progress toward achieving your goal. *

My mentor, John Maxwell, often says that it’s important to not only write down our goals, but also to write out the discreet steps we need to take to actually reach those goals. People who do this consistently — taking even small steps each day toward a stated goal — are much more likely to accomplish great things.

As you write out your tasks, actions, and reminders, consider any fears or doubts that will move into your consciousness, and could keep you from reaching your goals. Being aware of them, before they rear their ugly heads, allows you the opportunity to plan how you will respond (thoughtfully and intentionally) when they do arise. Plan for their arrival and what actions you will take to counter them.

Finally, take a few minutes to think back over the last four weeks and our focus on Belief. Jot down a few thoughts or actions that have impacted you this month.

*From the Intentional Leadership booklet, by Giant Impact.

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Assuming you decided to move forward and act on the opportunity you wrote about yesterday, let’s make an action plan, then share it with someone whose opinion you respect and whom you trust. *

Ask that person for his or her candid feedback on your plan, then ask them to hold you accountable for taking the steps you need to take over the next 30, days; schedule some time with him/her to review your progress when that 30 days has passed.

What beliefs must you hold to step confidently into this opportunity?

What specific daily actions must you take to step into this opportunity?

What actions must you take that will fuel existing or allow you to develop new beliefs you must hold to fully realize this opportunity?

Be sure to schedule those actions on your calendar; after all, if they are not a high enough priority to hold space on your calendar, when will you take those necessary steps?

We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.  ~MaxDuPree

*From the Intentional Leadership booklet, by Giant Impact. 

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