Cross-Examine the Narrator

That Narrator.

That voice.

The one who cuts you down.

The one who seems to have a job description to regularly review your faults and past failures and bring a case against you.

We can try to silence the Narrator, but simply recognizing and trying to ignore that voice is not always enough.

During a coaching session we talked about the Narrator, and how often it reminds us of faults or short-comings. And, how when we silence that voice in one area or approach, the Narrator seems to find another angle, another strategy, another way to try to disrupt us.

But there is another way.

Cross-Examine the Narrator.

Instead of just taking in these words, these accusations, maybe it is time for us to examine the evidence, and take issue with these old approaches and rehashing of past failures.

Maybe it is time we put the Narrator on the stand after each statement or accusation that is leveled against us.

“Well you are not very consistent, if you were, you would be more successful. Look at the time you have wasted, and where you could be today.”

Hold on a second, now it is my turn and in my best pretend courtroomy lawyerly voice.

“I may not always be consistent, but part of my behavioral style allows me to be flexible and move quickly which is a strong quality. And as far as success, I am successful and here are the areas that I have had great success. [list of the evidence]”

“Yes, but…”

“So, you agree that I have had successes, but you keep insisting on bringing up old news, or old events. Your honor, I move to dismiss all charges.”

“I object!”

“Object all you want. You have no case. You have no relevant facts, and your accusations are groundless and are more of a distraction. Case dismissed!”

Don’t let the Narrator’s voice go unchallenged.

Speak up and Cross-Examine the Narrator.

Present the evidence.

Be tough on that voice that has been tough on you.

Dismiss the case against you.

Move forward and be free.

Posted in Change the World, Inner Voice, Knowing Yourself, Random Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Anniversary

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This morning this little icon appeared in WordPress, along with a quick note:

“Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!
You registered on WordPress.com 5 years ago.
Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging.”

Wow, it has been 5 years.

Where did the time go?

268 posts.

53.6 posts per year, right on target.

So many words.

Too many to count.

So many ideas.

Fun to wander back through. Did I really write that?

So many thoughts.

Will this continue? Will these thoughts still find their way into the world?

Thank you for reading.

There are so many other things you could do with your time and energy, thanks for making the choice.

Thank you for sharing.

Both for your ideas/lives/experiences with me, and for sending this out to those around you.

Thank you for coming along for this journey.

This little experiment only works when we take the journey together.

I wonder what the next 5 years will bring?

Stories, progress, setbacks, wins, losses, fears, edges, goals and life lived and observed.

Posted in Change the World, Knowing Yourself, Random Thoughts, Your Dreams, Your Story | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Unleashed

Unleashed

Unleashed.

No longer held back.

No internal barriers stopping you.

No external barriers getting in your way.

Unlike an untethered state, Unleashed is when you are completely free to pursue your biggest dreams.

Unleashed means to set in motion.

What does that motion mean for you?

Starting that business?

Selling, merging, or changing the operation?

Pursuing that certification?

Taking that trip?

Quitting that job?

Finding that new career path?

Taking that risk?

Writing?

Creating?

Don’t mistake an anchor for a leash.

Anchors ground you.

Leashes hold you back and restrain you.

Go. Dream. Move.

Go. Be. Unleashed.

Posted in Change the World, Knowing Yourself, Making a Difference, Our Behaviors, Random Thoughts, Your Dreams, Your Job, Your Story | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Take the Journey

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A good friend recently published her story of taking an adventure across America. It was great learning more about her story and her journey. This book serves as a reminder for all of us to go ahead and take the journey, take the risk, and to live a life worth reading about.

From spotting Moose and various other creatures, to sarcasm and obscure Simpson’s references (loved this part), through fear and doubt, loss and love, Gloria Jean invites us to ride along with her on a larger quest to find treasure in places less traveled.

There is something magical and awful about road trips. They require us to put in the hours to reach a goal, especially when there are faster and easier ways to take the journey. Maybe that is the point to racking up the hours behind the wheel: all those miles give us opportunity to think, process, and wonder.

Thanks Gloria Jean.

Thanks for setting the example for the rest of us.

What journey is waiting for you?

What risk should you take?

Go. Live. Write.

We are all waiting to read your story.

Posted in Random Thoughts, Your Dreams, Your Story | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Meticulous Framing

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During a recent conversation with a close friend, we discussed the importance of building things that last.

Relationships.

Businesses.

Creative Stuff.

Sometimes we don’t always start the right way.

Sometimes we have to go back and fix.

In order to build on what exists, you have to make sure what is underneath is strong enough to handle what comes next.

Strong enough to last.

The very next day I was on a job site for the construction of a new home.

I met the team responsible for framing the home.

It wasn’t my first job site, but this site/this work stood out.

Clean, straight, and beautiful.

Meticulous Framing.


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After the tour, there were many compliments directed towards the framing team.

The leader of the larger team and company responsible for the project told a quick story.

“My former partner used to say ‘this is framing, not finish carpentry’. I would remind him that if I did a crappy job framing, I’d end up spending more time messing around trying to fix things when I installed the finish trim, cabinets and doors.”

Everyone nodded in agreement.

The framing team agreed and spoke of how important it was to get this step done well.

I found it interesting, that once complete, no one will see the Meticulous Framing.

This Meticulous Framing is not glamorous: other things that sit on top will ultimately get all the credit for how this home looks.

This Meticulous Framing will be hidden from view, seemingly forever, or until someone makes a drastic change.

This Meticulous Framing will set the stage for the next several decades.

This Meticulous Framing may take a few extra days, but may save weeks later on.

The leader tells this story in the larger context.

“I like to say what you do in one part of your life is pretty likely to show up in other parts of your life…”

Couldn’t we use Meticulous Framing when building relationships?

Couldn’t we use Meticulous Framing when building businesses?

Couldn’t we use Meticulous Framing when doing creating stuff?

The next time you build something, ask your self:

“Am I building this in a way that will last, or will I be spending a lot of time messing around trying to fix things?”

Maybe Meticulous Framing is exactly what we need, so what we build will last.

Posted in Leadership, Making a Difference, Our Behaviors, Random Thoughts, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Affirmation or Revelation

“I didn’t need it, they don’t need it!”

Usually said loudly and with passion.

Usually said with a negative and sometimes angry tone.

Usually as a response to the idea of coaching, encouraging, or recognizing employees.

Usually while being critical and perhaps judgmental of perceived generational or work-ethic differences.

“I didn’t need someone to tell me I was doing a good job!”

“I didn’t need a trophy just for showing up!”

“I didn’t need to be coached, I just worked hard!”

“I didn’t need a reward, it was my job!”

When these statements enter the room or conversation, pause and watch what happens.

These statements tend to weave their way through the crowd.

There are usually two responses to these statements that you can visibly witness.

  1. Affirmation 
  2. Revelation

Affirmation: people who have experienced similar treatment, management, or upbringing that nod and agree. This is what they were given, and they continue to give the same back to others.

Revelation: people who may have experienced similar treatment, management, or upbringing, but disagree with the past. They are making a decision to give to others in a different way than what as given to them.

After the short silence, typically one of the Revelation responders will speak up.

“I understand that you didn’t receive the affirmation, coaching, or reward along the way in life. I didn’t receive it either, but I realized how much of a negative impact it had on me. Was there a time when you wanted to hear something positive, a simple word of encouragement, or a little coaching?”

With a few simple questions, Affirmation may turn into Revelation.

They did need to be recognized.

They did need some coaching and encouragement.

They did need a reward for the sacrifice they were making.

The lack of what they needed made them hardened.

Instead of Revelation, the result was Affirmation of the very treatment, management, or upbringing that caused the negative impact.

Which response will you have?

Affirmation or Revelation?

Posted in Knowing Yourself, Leadership, Making a Difference, Modifying, Our Behaviors, Our Words, Random Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Guess…with positive intent

Yesterday we had one of those conversations.

The kind of conversation that matters.

The kind of conversation that means something.

We talked about marriage and when you just take the leap.

We talked about kids and parenting.

We talked about struggling when you are young, in the middle, and when you are older.

We talked about roles in life.

We talked about jobs and insurance.

We talked about finances and trying to create and stick to a direction.

We talked about good advice we get from others.

We talked about bad advice we get from others.

We talked about making plans.

We talked about trying to make everything perfect.

We talked about waiting to act.

Road Map

We talked about how in life there isn’t some clearly defined road map. And depending on your circumstances or life story it is easy to feel completely lost without a good example of how to move forward.

We don’t have all the answers.

We are not always sure which way to go.

We are not given a map in life.

We have to guess.

We decided that the best advice is guess with positive intent.

We decided to define a “guess with positive intent” as evaluating options, and taking your best shot at the time, but with the intention of doing something good, positive, and meaningful. This doesn’t mean that we will always get it right, but this option moves us forward without having to be perfect, but our desire is to do something well and meaningful. If it was not the “perfect” choice, you make the next guess with positive intent, and keep trying.

How do you become a good parent? No idea. Try stuff. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

How do you know when to get married? No idea. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

How do you know which career path to take? No idea. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

How do you make a relationship last? No idea. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

How do you decide when to switch careers, or try something new? No idea. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

How do you [insert your question or dilemma here].

Our advice. Guess. But guess with positive intent.

 

Posted in Choices, Making a Difference, Our Behaviors, Random Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment