Attitude is NOT everything – but it’s close!

I posted a this quote on Facebook earlier:

Great attitudes don’t guarantee a team’s success, but bad attitudes certainly guarantee its failure.

The response it received inspired me to share this blog with you. John Maxwell taught me that the saying “attitude is everything” isn’t entirely true…ability is certainly a huge key to success. If you’re a terrible athlete, no amount of great attitude is going to get you into the NFL. However, attitude is the difference maker. With all things being equal, tie goes to the great attitude. That’s what makes your attitude the difference maker in the outcomes you realize in life.

Attitude is the one thing all human beings have complete control of and yet many unknowingly choose a negative attitude. If we understood the power of our own attitude in our lives, most of us would change it immediately. How many times have you been told to change your attitude? That is a common order from most parents and teachers!

Attitude is created by your thoughts, feelings and actions. Your mind controls feelings and decides whether these feelings will be positive or negative through your thoughts. Your body then follows these thoughts through actions and behaviors. It sounds simplistic because it is.

Through our thoughts, we create an attitude. This attitude is expressed based on how we internalize ideas. Our mind and body move into a new vibration of conscious awareness known as feelings. These feelings are then displayed through actions and behaviors that produce the results in our lives.

Attitude [Thoughts + Feelings + Actions] = Results

Imagine feeding our minds with positive thoughts and flow through the process. We will end with positive results. Now imagine feeding our minds with negative thoughts and flow through the process. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

By changing our thoughts, we can change our attitude, which will ultimately change our results. Attitude is the creative cycle that allows us to feel a certain way and then take the necessary action to a specific result.

Start with the end in mind and make the decision that today is the day to change your attitude!

Affirmation

This is one of the most important and effective aspects of being a great leader, but is often one that is utilized the least. When used properly, genuine affirmations will strengthen your relationships to new levels! 

This lesson is rooted in the principle: “We see people as we see ourselves.” That means that if you don’t see yourself as a strong, confident, effective, passionate individual…you’ll have a very hard time seeing any of those qualities in other people. My mentor, John Maxwell, puts it like this:

Whenever I see my staff, I put an imaginary “10” on the forehead of each individual. This helps me treat each person like a 10, a high performer who makes a difference to me and the organization. Inevitably, they respond as if they ARE a 10!  (John Maxwell Leadership Bible)

There are a few key elements to having this be truly effective. Let’s run through those. 

  1. Make them sincere. This is probably one of the most important. If the other person doesn’t sense that you’re being genuine, you’re dead in the water. Not only will you not improve the relationship, but you’re likely to destroy it. Always be genuine and authentic about what you say.
  2. Make them specific. Get very pointed and detailed about what you say. This will go a long way to adding credibility to your affirmation or compliment and really let the other person know that you are truly paying attention to them and what they’re doing.
  3. Make them public. Declare these honoring words in front of others. It’s one thing to compliment someone in private, but when you do this in front of their peers and/or other members of leadership it magnifies it tenfold at least! 
  4. Make them personal. Be personal about what you say. The easiest way to make sure you’re personal is to truly speak from the heart. 

Put simply: Leaders bless people. Be a blessing in someone’s life today! 

(John Maxwell Leadership Bible; p.824)

Change! It’s Not a Bad Thing…

If the facts don’t fit the theory, change the facts. ~ Albert Einstein

I love that quote!  Change is that scary word that most people shy away from.  I don’t want to change.  Why should I change?  Why doesn’t everyone else change to accommodate me?  If I change, then I will be out of my comfort zone.  Why change something that isn’t broken?

  1. Asking someone to change is like expecting the sun to not rise.  Isn’t it a pointless request?  Change comes from within.  Change is something we do with ourselves.  Only we can control us, no one else.  So why ask, expect, anticipate, anything from someone else?

Let’s focus on how to change us.  First why would anyone want to change themselves?  Is it because they don’t like the outcome?  Have you ever had a conversation with someone and you really want to change their mind about something?  You try so hard to convince them that your point of view is right and theirs is wrong!  Can’t they see that?  I mean do they realize just how foolish their ideas are?  Ha!

Cause and Effect.  Facts and Theory.  Yin and Yang.  If you don’t like the end result, then you need to change the actions.  If the facts don’t fit the theory, in other words, the end result of the facts is not the theory then the facts must change.  Your actions (cause) create an end result (effect).  If you don’t like the effect, change the cause.  If you want a particular effect, but aren’t getting it, then change the cause.

It is really simple but we complicate it because we think it is everyone else that needs to change and not us.  Stop.  Take a breath.  Read that again.  It is really simple.  We want a different end result.  We need to make a change.

If you want to convince someone you are right and they are looking at you like you have three eyes… stop.  Look within.  Why do you want to convince anyone of anything?  If someone cannot see your point of view for whatever reason, if someone is doing something that you do not like, if someone or something is not what you expected… then look within.  Look at what you are doing, thinking, saying,… take the blame off others and look at your actions and make the necessary changes and adjustments to achieve the end result you so desire.

(Empowerment Mentoring)

Decisions

It’s been a while since my last post…largely because I’ve been in transition after a huge decision of my own. I was running the #1 radio station in central Florida. My current situation was ideal…a great job that I was extremely successful in, great friends, great co-workers, every reason under the sun to stay put. Instead, I stepped outside of what was familiar, and walked away from that to relocate over 1,000 miles away to Texas for a chance at an even larger opportunity. Don’t be fooled…making huge life decisions like that has always been difficult for me. Battling that voice in my head telling me that I’m making the wrong choice, I’m walking away from security, this new opportunity won’t be as good as what I’ve got, and I’ll probably just end up failing and regretting everything. I’ve had to do so much soul searching recently and forced myself to step outside my comfort zone. That’s what spurred me to post this blog. 

Decisions are a mental activity every one of us engages in on a daily basis.  From deciding when to wake up, to what to eat, to how to spend our day, to where to spend our money, to whom to spend our time with… decisions are part of our daily life. 

That doesn’t mean we are good at making decisions.  Many of us make very bad decisions every day and only a few of us make good decisions consistently.  Why is there such disparity in this?  What keeps us from making sound decisions?  

Did you know that you could virtually eliminate conflict and confusion by becoming proficient at making decisions?  Once you make a decision, you will find all the people, resources and ideas you need every time. 

Indecisiveness is a decision to not make a decision.  This is typically fueled by the fear of failure.  Low self esteem and succumbing to circumstances is why so many people make poor decisions. 

If you have an idea, a desire, a wish, a worthy ideal, make the decision to achieve whatever it is you want.  Once you make this decision, the people, resources, and ideas will be attracted to you because your belief in achievement will supersede your fears and circumstances.  Your belief will be the catalyst that changes your behaviors, your actions, and ultimately your results.

Keep your focus on your visions, your worthy ideal.  Refuse to worry about how it will happen – know that you are capable of anything you put your mind to and make the decision today to DECIDE WHERE YOU ARE WITH WHATEVER YOU’VE GOT.

(From “Empowerment Mentoring“)

Laugh, I Dare You!

I wrote a blog a while back about dreaming like a kid. Kids dream without limitation, because unlike adults, they haven’t been completely conditioned to think otherwise. It doesn’t stop there, though. 

If you think about it…children, by nature, are just happier than adults. Sure, you can say they don’t have the stresses of work and all the responsibilities, but I think it’s actually much more simple than that. Here’s an interesting fact: 

On average, children laugh 400x a day. The average adult? Only 12.

Think about that for second. When was the last time you were angry but laughed until your sides hurt? I can tell you…never! It’s impossible! You can’t be furious and truly laughing at the same time. It’s also impossible for you to think one way and act another. You can’t think positivity and exert negativity. You can’t think nice things about someone and be angry at them at the same time. 

Oh, and here’s something just as an added incentive – laughing 15 minutes per day sheds 4 pounds per year!

In the world of “on demand” and high speed internet, fast food, and everything readily available at our fingertips – we’re always looking for ways to improve our daily lives instantly. We want quick fixes, fast results, and don’t really want to work for it. Well, friends, here it is. 

Laugh. Laugh every day. At least 15 minutes per day. You’ll feel better. You’ll be happier. Oh, and like I mentioned, you’ll lose weight! :) 

And if you’re feeling REALLY adventurous…share a laugh with someone else! Do this, even if it’s just once, to see if I’m right. If it doesn’t really have a dramatic impact on your day – I’ll reimburse every penny you paid for my advice. In fact, I’ll double it. 

Here’s something to get you started:

http://youtu.be/Q9T8i4FkNVo

Be blessed! 

 

Just Do Something

I just saw a quote from one of my favorite people and I had to share it with you.

“Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly, until you learn to do it well.” ~Zig Ziglar

How often do we not do something because we’re not confident that we’ll be able to do it well? This is a huge hurdle for me, because I always hold myself to such a high standard, that I almost always expect perfection out of myself.Often to the point that I never end up doing whatever it is, for that reason. 

Zig is speaking to that perfectionist in all of us. We should never let our lack of self confidence and/or the fear of not being able to do something perfectly keep us from doing anything. I’m reminded of a young aspiring singer that took the stage in front of the one of the most brutal audiences in the country – “Showtime at The Apollo”. Not only was he NOT met with enthusiasm or a warm welcome – he was booed off the stage…more than once. I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure I’d never show my face in the music business again after that. That young man…was Luther Vandross. 

He wasn’t concerned about performing perfectly, he just wanted to perform. Of course he WANTED to do well, but he didn’t let the fear of not stand in his way. In his case, the rest, as they say, is history. 

There are countless stories like his. It’s important to note that most people don’t quit right after they start, but rather when they’re closer to their goal than they realize. 

I often go back to Nike’s slogan – “Just Do It” – just do SOMETHING. How many times, as a kid, did your parents tell you “try it, you might like it” (in my case it was typically centered around me trying a new vegetable for the first time)? 

To quote Les Brown, one of the best people I’ve ever had the privilege of meeting: 

“Jump and grow your wings on the way down!”

Nobody said it would be easy

So many people wish life was easier, with less challenges and obstacles but without challenges, life becomes stagnant and we stop growing.  Challenges help us uncover who we are and it allows us to become better people. 

Let’s examine a very simple 4-step method to overcoming challenges.

First, state the problem clearly.  When we are faced with challenges, we tend to avoid the issue and run the other way burying our heads in the sand hoping it goes away.  Or we may say – ok, there is an obstacle, instead of heading right to it and plowing through, I am going to look for another path and even though that is not the way I want to go – it looks easier… less headache… but rarely does that work out.  When we avoid or go out of our way, we cause more headache in the end.  It takes more of our time, it takes more of our energy and we don’t get the end result we are looking for.  So take this time to understand what the challenge is.  Ask yourself what is the question, what is asked of me, what is the main goal? Write this down on paper.

Second, identify what you have at your disposal – what resources are available to you to work through this challenge? List all of these resources out.  These should include things such as tangible assets – money, computer, books, etc.  And then what skills you have, what are your strengths to work through this?  Don’t forget others – what access do you have to others that can help?

Third, design the strategy to overcome this challenge.  Utilize all your assets to create a plan of action.  You may find this plan will need to be tweaked as you execute and that is ok.  Keep at it.

Lastly, execute the strategy with effort and determination.  Do your very best with all you have to overcome your challenge.

If you find that you still cannot overcome a challenge, then re-evaluate.  If your strategy just won’t work because it isn’t viable or effective then change it. If your strategy doesn’t work because you didn’t execute it well enough, be persistent and tweak your efforts, giving it more. 

Practice this method on small challenges and see how easy it is to overcome.  Then try it on the big rocks! 

Dream Big and Win! 

(from Empowerment Mentoring)