With Patrick Mosher
You've got the task in your sights. It may be simple or hard, but what you need to do is clear. It doesn't get done. You move it to next day's or next week's To Do list. Still doesn't get done. You convince yourself you'll get tired of moving it to the next To Do list. And it still doesn't get done.
You may have a bunch of reasons why push it off, but this is a specific kind of pushed task. It's the kind where you've got a story in your head that you're not good at that task.
"Oh, I'm not good with numbers." Or, "I'm not good at technology."
It requires you to…..gulp….. LEARN something you don't want to! I call these: "I don't wanna" Competencies.
If you find yourself lacking a competency critical to your success and you lack the drive to learn it. You can make one of 3 choices.
As we close this year and enter a new one, there will be lots of New Year resolutions. Lots of ambitious plans about how the new year holds promise for a brighter future.
Before moving on from this year, though, take a few moments to celebrate what you've done THIS YEAR. Do your Annual Review.
When I was consulting, our annual review process looked back on the year. We completed a form, encapsulating our performance for the year. Early in my 28-year career, I realized the power of the Annual Review. Sure, it was important because my supervisor read this document and recommended my performance rating and promotion. Important. MORE importantly, in this single document was a description of a year of my professional life! 2000 working hours. All the sweat and tears. All the client wins. Team bonding events. My learnings, especially the ones learned the hard way! Yes, my struggles. All was...
What is the most sensual voice you've ever heard? YIKES! Where are we going with THAT question?
Vocalics is the study of all stimuli produced by the human voice that affect the auditory sense. It's not the words themselves, but how the words sound. Even pauses and silence are our instruments of vocalics.
Have you ever thought about how you sound? It's time to hike up your awareness and skills of vocalics because people hear the emotion in your words maybe even more than the meaning of the words themselves!
When we project our voice, we think of it as our voice. We may initialize it from within our body, but once it gets out there, it really isn't ours anymore. Once our voice leaves our bodies, three little ear bones vibrate in the other person's body.
How intimate is THAT?
Let's do our own experiment. Hum a really low note. Where do you feel that in your body? Now hum a really high...
Have you ever stressed out about what someone thinks about you? Yep, I've done it too.
After my divorce, I all too often wondered what my ex-wife was telling my daughters about me. Was she saying good things? Disparaging things? I wondered and worried. It really ate me up inside. I thought about being direct and asking her, but would she tell me the truth – especially if she was telling them icky stuff? And I must admit, there was enough icky truths to tell them, too! Should I ask my young daughters? Aargh…this was SO frustrating!
We worry about what others think. Every time you think about what another person is thinking, you give that person power over this moment in your life. Is it worth your mindshare, your energy? If it's not worth it, you leak energy and personal power!! YIKES!
So how do you prevent leaking personal power? I analyze these situations with three simple...
Ever feel like you weren't being heard?
'Do you mean within the last hour?' The feeling of not being heard is common. Unfortunately … too common. We can't do much to improve another person's listening skills, so let's focus on our own.
Active Listening is a skill. Learnable. Improvable.
Wikipedia says Active Listening 'requires the listener to fully concentrate, understand, respond and then remember what is being said.'
On a ten-point scale, how would you rate your Active Listening skill? 10? 5? C'mon be honest. We all can improve our Active Listening skills. We just need to learn more about it and then practice. And practice. And practice more. Until Active Listening becomes Habit.
Let's get to it!
There are three fundamental steps to Active Listening: Hear. Store. Respond.
Hear. You'd think something as simple as hearing is...
The end of the year is fast approaching. Wait. It's the end of a DECADE! Have you made your Decadal Plan? Decade as an adjective is Decadal. 10 year plan = Decadal Plan.
With such a monumental milestone at our doorstep, STOP running for a moment. Take a breath. Reflect where you are from three perspectives.
Perspective #1. The Gratitude View
Get settled. Take another deep breath. Now, recall ONE memory over the last 10 years that brings you joy. Got it? Bathe in that memory for a bit. <PAUSE> For me, the first ten-year memory that made me smile was my daughter getting married. I remember the wedding day like it was yesterday. My breath gets taken away when I see her in her wedding dress. I walk down the aisle and 'give her away.' At the reception, the song, "You've Got a Friend" by James Taylor is our father-daughter dance. To this day, whenever I hear that song, I...
We traveled a long way to get here. Delphi, Greece. The place where Pythia, the Delphi Oracle, received pilgrims seeking answers to questions related to their most pressing issues. Politicians, kings and philosophers traveled the arduous journey to the Delphi Oracle. Why? Because they believed she spoke Truth.
What question would you ask, if you had complete faith the answer would be absolutely True?
I call this the Delphi Oracle Question (DOQ). I use this metaphor in my events and programs. When I prepare for big events or ceremonies, I brainstorm my DOQ. Review and revise it. Imagine if you could receive absolute Truth, wouldn't you hone that question to get it just right? The process of honing my question is a habit and I'm amazed at how the question is always answered! Perhaps not in the way or timing I expect, but always answered.
Well, here I was at the actual site of the Delphi Oracle! Magnificent...
You may think this piece is about life after turning 55. I have a great story of turning 50, but that story is for another time.
This story begins in Cuzco, Peru. A few years ago, I had a magical 'pull' to conduct an event in the sacred mountains of Machu Picchu. I conducted a dry run of the event because of the exotic location. So, my team and I took off for Machu Picchu, flying through Lima and staging in Cuzco Peru.
When I landed in Cuzco, I felt a little 'off.' It was like having a mild case of sunstroke. A little confusion. Head a little blurry. Altitude. Cuzco is at about 11,000 feet. I slept well that first night, but woke in the morning still dizzy. I was downing coco tea, a local remedy for altitude sickness. Due to my Cardiac Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), I carry a small oximeter which measures my oxygen levels. Oximeter read 64%. For people without lung problems, typical readings...
I took a walk in the woods. Listened to the geese honking noisily overhead. Breathed air deep into my lungs. Felt the Fall leaves crunch under my feet. Even two nearby dogs incessant barking were beautiful pieces in my reverie.
We give our time to our jobs, our children, our spouses. We serve generously. After all, we are giving beings.
Isn't it interesting that we give time, but if we want time for ourselves, we have to take it. Taking time feels like we're stealing it. HEY WAIT A MINUTE! Wasn't it our time to begin with?
When do you live at your pace?
My next story is controversial.
Early in my career, we proposed on a huge training design and development project. The client wanted us to bid on the training delivery as well. To deliver training, we would send our high-priced consultants to each of the 300 stores across the US. Sounds good, but our price would put us in the...
I was talking to a Senior at my alma mater, Purdue, recently. He was graduating with a four-year graphic design degree. Wow! Think of the hard work. The many classes. Drawings. Computer Programs. Tests. Projects. 4 years of hard work.
"What do you want to do when you graduate."
His answer surprised me.
"I'm not sure I'm qualified to take a full-time job so I'm thinking I'll take a part-time job to learn what I need to do a good job."
I looked at him. Stunned. Here's a young man who has worked hard for 4 years and doesn't have the confidence to put his hard work into practice. I guess he's suffering from the "Not Good Enough" syndrome. Ever caught that dis-ease?
I launched into my story from my Bachelor's Degree in Chemical Engineering and how I had seen many failures along the way. One particular one sticks with me today. You see, I flunked second semester Organic Chemistry in my second...