Whether you’re making a commitment to a client, an employee, a family member, or even to yourself, make sure you’re extremely honest and that the promise you make is the “bottom floor” of what you will accomplish.
So, instead of committing to lose 50 pounds or promising to run a mile every day, make the promise that you’ll lose 5 pounds or walk a block every morning.
You can always exceed the promise and no one (including you) will object.
However, being a “political junkie,” I sometimes use elected figures or partisan causes as a launching pad for my broader point. For some reason I cannot fathom, that elicits hate mail.
As example, a few years ago, I wrote about Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (and others) who was gunned down in an Arizona shopping center. My piece (or so I thought) was neither an argument for nor against tighter or looser gun controls. Rather, I used the tragedy to illuminate that we have become more concerned with proving our points of view are correct instead of collaborating to discover solutions. My intention was to point out that if we respect and communicate better with each other, we’d all get more of what we need. To me, that seemed a very sensible point. After all, who could argue about being reasonable? Who knew? Yep, there were some.
Ironically, some were more interested in defending their positions than trying to understand the backbone of my piece; the article’s main complaint.
So… with that as preamble, please drop any political pre-dispositions (either positive or negative) when I mention New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, whom I shall use as example for a greater point.
Mr. Christie is a high-profile politician. We can differ as to whether he’s a suitable presidential candidate, or even a decent executive for The Garden State. What is without disagreement is that Mr. Christie is obese, morbidly obese. In the interest of full disclosure, I disagree with Christie more than I agree with him. Having said that, I still find it distasteful that — due only to his size — it is considered within the norm to poke fun at him.
I understand that one could argue that the governor – and obese people – has brought it upon himself by lifestyle choices. I would counter, one, we don’t know that; two, that’s might not be accurate. More importantly, it belies the greater question, “Even if someone makes improper health choices, why are so many so comfortable with teasing others about what they weigh or eat?”
Most of the time, fear “lives in the future.” In other words, the vast majority of times, when we get frightened, it’s because we’re thinking about something that might happen, or could happen. Fortunately, it’s usually not happening right now.
If you’re afraid you will not be able to accomplish your goals, that means you’re thinking too far out. Slow yourself down, and go back to the “Think 1st” philosophy:
That will calm you down enough to resolve the problem.
It’s a new dawn; heaven has opened wide; the path is clear; I am complete! Just picturing it makes me so excited I can barely sit still!
But, here’s the thing about the thing. You can’t just jump into it, you know? I mean, after all, something as grandiose as this requires forethought and meticulous planning. That’s why I’ll be successful where others wouldn’t! See, I have a handle on the fact you just don’t launch willy-nilly hither and yon down the boulevard into something as pressing, essential, and life-altering as a thing like this can be. You better be primed, that’s what I have to say.
And I am! Nothing will hold me back! I’m getting my ducks in a row; putting my house in order; stepping one foot in front of the other; yes sirree Bob! I’m figuring out the flawless, exact method to ensure I do it just so. Don’t want to take my shot and blow it. You hear me, don’t ya’ bro?
Now, being wiser, I know first elicit support. It’s slowing me down somewhat because — well, I don’t mean to brag — but I’m a pretty popular guy, you know? I have friends on top of friends; want to make sure they’re all on board. I’ve called several, emailed buckets more; even posted it on Facebook. That’s the way to build consensus though. It’s time-consuming, but when you’re a forward-thinking guy like me, you appreciate that’s the price of success. Slow and steady; tortoise and hare; you know how it goes.
But after that, watch out, boy howdy! After you heed your peeps, you chart your actions. Those of us in the know value that if you write down the objectives, line ‘em out, set ‘em in motion; they’re far more likely to happen. Measure twice, cut once; right? So, I’ll take a few days for a secluded personal retreat where I compile the input, and write, write, write! Read More »
(See, in your head, you HAD to answer that – even if you disagreed!)
If we really want to have closer relationships and we want to get more from those with whom we associate, we have to:
Telling someone what you want without listening to what he or she wants might get you what you need. But, listening first is a more reliable strategy and will probably get both of you what you want.
(See, you answered again!) Read More »
This is the eighth in a series of Friday Motivational videos with successful people discussing with Scott how to get past what holds you back. In a hallway meeting at a conference (hence the background noise), Scott “Q” Marcus talks with Rebecca Morgan, bestselling author, trusted adviser to executives, international consultant, seminar leader, and speaker; on why her use of to-do lists – as well as an amazing attitude – prevents her from getting stressed out.
Read More »
Well, that’s not exactly accurate; I am in airplanes a great deal. They fly. I merely constrict my five-feet-eight-inches of body into about three-feet-seven-inches of space for four hours 18 minutes of discomfort, late arrivals, and poor service. It’s a privilege for which I pay a great deal of money.
However scrambling and stumbling over three other contorted travelers to stagger sloth like down a scrawny center aisle following a unhurriedly moving food cart with attendants lobbing over-priced “box meals” to ravenous twisted travelers doesn’t sound advantageous. Therefore, I read.
One of the airlines on which I frequently endure travel has a regular feature in their magazine. It lays out how to spend a few “perfect days” in an exotic city. For example, “three perfect days in Paris,” or “four perfect days in Bangkok.” They have yet to list “six perfect days in Eureka” but I am sure it is soon to be.
This is an absolutely amazing video about how we picture ourselves vs how we really are. It’s only 3 minutes long and it’s easily worth it. It will very possibly bring a tear to your eye.
Change can be frightening and uncomfortable. There’s no arguing that. However, it’s also necessary as change is the only thing that’s actually constant.
We can’t escape it. We cannot avoid it.
The sooner we accept it, the better we will be.
Although this is not a theater review, I admit that even though the cast was three weeks out from opening night, my wife and I both truly enjoyed it. The play bounces lightly between humorous and tender moments with an unforced ease and the tight cast of four actors performed well with and up against each other. Never did I check my watch – and that’s rare until itself.
However, the reason I was invited was NOT to provide good reviews (um, which I think I just did…) but because the plot, to a large extent, deals with how our inner dialog determines the quality of the lives we lead. Since you’re reading this column, I assume you understand that is one of the pillars about which I write.
Because of her critical self-talk, she masks her pain with humor and conjures up excuses to avoid becoming involved with a sweet, slightly awkward gentleman who sees her for who she is as a complete person, paying little heed to the superficial level of what she weighs.
The playwright, Jon Lonoff, must have been overweight, as he gives eloquent voice to what so many of us with body image “issues” say to ourselves — and then reflects that internal dialog’s outcome in the quality of our lives.
Don’t misunderstand; I’m not saying — nor is the play — that a woman (nor man) can only be defined by her relationships. However, should we choose to avoid them because we feel unworthy, that’s a pizza with a different topping. Read More »
If you just sent in your check to the IRS, the first word that comes to mind might not be “prosperous.” However, compared to how more than half the world lives, you are beyond wealthy.
This is the seventh in a series of Friday Motivational videos with successful people discussing with Scott how to get past what holds you back. In a hallway meeting at a conference, Scott “Q” Marcus talks with nationally recognized speaker, communication expert, author, and coach Patrick Donadio on how to get past overthinking a conversation.
Read More »