This is a lovely moment – the winter solstice.
The darkest day of the darkest week of the year . . .
. . . when the movement of descent into darkness pauses.
. . . when the rhythm of the sun pauses before it changes from decrease to increase.
. . . when the dominance of night pauses before light overtakes darkness.
If you pay close attention, you can feel it – the pause before the shift.
This darkest day beckons us to pause, too.
What does any great athlete do before they …
… dive into the water
… throw the discus
… grab the rings
What are they thinking about?
. . . → Read More: The solstice reminds us it is time to pause, and do nothing.
Do you ever hear a little voice in the back of your head saying things like: look before you leap … or … two wrongs don’t make a right … or … if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?
We all have tapes running in the background that guide our actions. If you pay attention, you might notice you’re often listening to sayings you learned as a child.
Many of these sayings contradict each other, lying at opposite ends of a pole. The pole you listen to depends on the family and cultural values you learned and the temperament you were born with.
Haste makes waste. <–> He who hesitates is lost.
You can’t teach an old . . . → Read More: Manage Your Polarities or They Will Manage You
You might think this has become a transactional world, where important decisions are made solely on the basis of price. It certainly might look like that, especially in the wild San Francisco Bay real estate market where housing prices are at an all time high and competition is fierce.
But my experience last month challenges this belief.
I moved from the east coast to the San Francisco Bay area last summer. It was a big move to leave a community I’ve been part of for over 30 years; but all of my family had migrated out west over the years and I wanted to be closer to them.
I took a temporary rental in a lovely neighborhood near my cousin so I had time to . . . → Read More: Relationship Currency Transforms a Transactional World
The secret to greatness lies in the small actions we each take every day.
Although we won’t all be recognized by history, each of us is capable of achieving greatness through our everyday actions.
Most of the good in the world is built on the accumulated efforts of ordinary people doing small things in a great way.
7 Keys to Greatness
Be clear that your actions serve a higher purpose, and are not simply self-serving. Know what an excellent job looks like. Start with the end in mind. Make a full effort. Give it your full attention. Be willing to make mistakes; use them as learning opportunities. See it through to the end. Don’t settle for less than you are . . . → Read More: Strive For Greatness
Do you think you’re an effective leader? Feedback is one good way to find out, especially through “360 feedback.”
But there’s another, equally powerful way. Take a serious look at your beliefs – your “assumed truths” about yourself, others and how the world works.
Your beliefs dictate your behavior. And unexamined beliefs are like icebergs. Unseen below the surface, they can undermine your good intentions without your awareness.
Instead of believing everything you think, think about what you really believe.
Taking some time to reflect on these questions will help uncover some assumptions that might be interfering with your ability to align your behavior with your intentions to be a better leader.
1. What are you are willing to take a stand for?
When . . . → Read More: 5 Questions That Will Help You Be a Better Leader
Technology gives us the opportunity to be “always on” and the illusion of increased productivity. The reality is that it’s not healthy, and over the long run you will be less productive.
Even understanding this, it can be hard to resist the pressure to quickly check email or whip off a quick response, especially if you believe your boss or customers will be unhappy if you don’t respond immediately.
To ensure your continued good health, productivity and positive relationships, confront your beliefs about being indispensable, negotiate new expectations around how quickly you need to respond, and make intentional decisions to create “off time.”
These 7 habits can help you turn off technology for a more tuned in life.
1. Stop multi-tasking. Many . . . → Read More: Tune In and Turn Off
During a break in the meeting, Dan pulled me aside and whispered, “No more ‘p’ words, please.”
“What are ‘p’ words?” I asked.
“You know,” he replied, “Words like process, perspective and paradigm.”
Dan is results-driven. There were way too many “p” words in this meeting for his comfort … planning … process … people … participation.
At one time or another, many of us have felt like Dan – that it is so much easier to do the work than take the time to involve others in the process of planning for the work – to just decide where you’re going and get on with it.
The problem is, when you’re a leader, you can’t just announce where you’re going and expect people . . . → Read More: Results Driven vs Process Driven Leadership
“The best way to predict your future is to create it.” – This popular quote is attributed to Peter Drucker. But what does it really mean?
Do you muscle your way into the future, constructing your life as though it’s a project? If you try to do that, you’ll be disappointed.
The real meaning behind this statement is that we need to assume responsibility for our lives and the future we want to impact.
It starts with focusing on the reality you create right now, which is shaped by what you focus your attention on and the images you hold in your mind.
Advanced studies in neuroscience show that we are hard-wired to focus on negative images. When we see something beautiful, we notice . . . → Read More: The Best Way to Predict Your Future
This is a lovely moment. The darkest day of the darkest week of the year in the northern hemisphere.
It is the moment before the balance shifts and light begins to overtake darkness.
On the winter solstice, the rhythm of the sun pauses as it changes direction from decrease to increase.
If we pay attention, we, too, can’t help but pause.
This darkest day of the darkest week beckons us to pause.
What does any great athlete do before they…
…. dive into the water
…. throw the discus
…. grab the rings
What are they thinking about?
Nothing — absolutely nothing.
Shabbat means stop, cease. That’s what this week beckons us . . . → Read More: Pause Before You Plan