Food For Thought Friday

💡 What’s your expectation for today?

💡 What you don’t know can be your greatest strength. It enables you to do things differently than everyone else.

💡 Respect the feelings of others even when it differs from yours.

💡 Know when to move in silence. Less tell. More show.

💡 Avoid spreading negativity. Treat it like the noise it is.

💡 Self-awareness is half the battle.

💡 Do it to make a difference, not to make an impression.

💡 Solving problems with money is the least creative solution.

💡 People often understand what they want to hear, not what you mean.

💡 There is a difference between giving up and knowing when you had enough.

Behaviors Are Contagious

There’s more to life than good or bad.

For example, if a wealthy person is miserable and a poor person is happy. Is the wealth or lack thereof good or bad?

So much of our stress comes from labeling the challenges we encounter throughout our lives.

💡 The “why” of life has infinite answers.

When life doesn’t go as planned, we as human beings tend to give more weight to the negative.

For example, you just had the most exquisite meal at a highly rated restaurant. As you walk to your car, you step in a pile of dog poop. What happens next?

You are in control of the way you look at life.

Choose wisely.

Behaviors are contagious.

Creating New Stories

I came across an article this weekend that touched on facing today’s fears, living today’s dreams, creating new stories, and understanding ourselves. The lessons that follow help to move us to those ends.

1. If you want to change the world, you have to fall in love with what already is. The same goes for changing yourself.

2. Listen to your doubts. They not only teach you of your fears but also your wisdom.

3. It’s okay to claim all is well amid doubt and confusion and to be happy despite challenges.

4. Your feelings are your choice. What manifests after may not be. Choose wisely.

5. What you say does not determine your honesty, but why you say it.

6. Never decide until you have to.

7. Take full responsibility for your life and never forget to have fun.

8. Always see work as play and play as important. Soon you won’t know the difference between the two.

9. The trick to being in the right place at the right time is knowing you already are.

10. The secret to living the life of your dreams is to start living them at once, however humbly, to any degree you can.

Source: Mike Dooley

Pet Peeves and Over Used Phrases

Pet peeves. We all have them. Here are some ways they play out in the workplace.

🙄 Adopting a “We have always done it this way” attitude.

🙄 Failure to make decisions.

🙄 Micro-managing.

🙄 People not delivering on their promises.

🙄 Knowingly, overstating capabilities.

🙄 Being assigned a goal with no authority or resources to achieve it.

🙄 Not responsive to calls or emails.

🙄 Leaders who hold staff accountable, but not themselves.

What’s one of your workplace frustrations?

Photo: managersorbit

Food For Thought Friday

💡 What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Bet on yourself.

💡 Busy is a decision. Make time your friend.

💡 There are some rules you cannot break – your personal standards.

💡 Perspectives change everything

💡 There is pleasure in helping others grow. If you’re there to help, you’re there to win.

💡 Decisions made in anger can yield a lifetime of regret.

💡 A good mood goes a long way.

💡 Let go to get what you want.

💡Peace of mind plays an important role in our daily lives.

💡 Never trust appearances.

Providing All The Answers

My daughter is taking classes virtually, and I am working remotely.

As a result, I noticed a pattern developing as it pertains to her schoolwork.

She was asking me questions every five minutes (exaggeration) about something she could have easily looked up.

I put a stop to that quickly.

What is the risk as leaders if we consistently provide all the answers for our team?

🔻 It shifts responsibility and their sense of ownership.

🔻 It hinders thinking and creativity.

🔻 It robs them of the opportunity to grow.

Naturally, leaders should guide their teams. Here are some ways to do that.

✔ Provide input for the options presented.

✔ Ask open-ended questions that do not embed the solution.

✔ Identify if someone else is better suited to answer the question.

Leaders often feel that they must have all the answers.

Successful leadership is about motivating people to do things that they otherwise would not have done.

By resisting the urge to provide an immediate solution, we create an environment filled with more trust and collaboration.

Why?

Why do we tend to take greater responsibility for our successes than we do our failures?

Why do we overestimate our positive qualities and underestimate our negative ones?

Why do we cling on to messages like “you messed up” versus “I appreciate you”?

Why do we look for the negative even when good things are happening?

Why do we talk the talk but don’t walk the walk?

Why do we complain about the monotony of our lives yet choose no course for correction?

Why is it the more connected we are, the more isolated we feel?

What are some of your thought provoking Why’s?

Mindfulness

Have you ever tried to talk to someone who was in a hurry, multi-tasking, or dealing with other background distractions?

Have you ever engaged in a conversation and wondered whether the person was listening to you or if it was worthwhile to continue speaking?

How did that make you feel?

We can express a real interest in others by:

✰ Having a welcoming posture

✰ Smiling

✰ Making eye contact

✰ Giving yes signals (nodding)

✰ Taking notes

✰ Asking follow-up questions

If time or other commitments are a factor, acknowledge your interest in speaking to the individual and establish a time when you can give your undivided attention. Wouldn’t you want the same for yourself?

Food For Thought Friday

💡 There’s more to discover beneath the surface. Dig deeper.

💡 You need people who can tell you what you don’t want to hear.

💡 Be the best version of your authentic self.

💡 The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are, not someone else.

💡 Avoiding reality is to your detriment.

💡 If you have life, you have purpose.

💡 How do you know it’s working?

💡 Discover the genius hibernating in your brain.

💡 Imagination unleashed goes beyond the limitations of the past.

💡 Quiet, calm deliberation disentangles every knot.

Time

Time is a commodity.

Yet, many people:

🚫 Abuse it

🚫 Misuse it

🚫 Refuse it

There are three ways to regain time:

✅ Eliminate time-wasters

✅ Delegate tasks

✅ Become more efficient

I realized I was wasting a lot of time on certain social media platforms. As a result, I deleted the accounts. What are some time-wasters you can ditch to regain time?

Meeting Overkill

Are you a meeting manager or a people manager?

I often ask managers this question when I’m facilitating leadership training.

Without fail, time spent in meetings outweighs time invested in the people they lead.

Because meetings are beneficial, here are some techniques to manage agendas and prevent squandering time away on issues that have little or no direct impact on company value.

✔ Deal with operations separately from strategy. Day-to-day operations should not dominate the meeting agenda.

✔ Focus on decisions, not on discussions. Identify the purpose of each agenda item and distribute materials in advance.

✔ Measure the value of every item on the agenda. What is at stake?

✔ Get issues off the agenda quickly. Establish a timetable detailing when and how team members will reach a decision on each agenda item and who must be involved in approving the final strategy.

✔ Put choices on the table. Management can’t make choices without alternatives.

✔ Adopt common decision-making processes and standards. Use a common language and methodology.

✔ Make decisions stick. Establish the resources required to execute the strategy, and the results expected over time.

Adapted: Michael Mankins (HBR)
Photo: Medium

Karma

Karma is a B$&@! How many times have we heard this one?

Karma in Sanskrit means action. For every action, there is a reaction.

In business, this shows up in the way we:

👉 See ourselves.

👉 Treat others.

👉 Handle our resources.

👉 Develop our teams.

The Twelve Laws of Karma offers wise words for work and life.

𝟏. Cause and Effect – What you sow is what you reap.

𝟐. Creation – What we focus on is what we create.

𝟑. Humility – Accept what is, let go of what was, and make changes towards what will be.

𝟒. Growth – Our growth can happen over any circumstance.

𝟓. Responsibility – Our lives are of our own doing, nothing else.

𝟔. Connection – Everything in the Universe is connected, both large and small.

𝟕. Focus – One cannot direct attention beyond a single task.

𝟖. Hospitality and Giving – Demonstrating selflessness shows our true intentions.

𝟗. Change – History repeats itself unless changed.

𝟏𝟎. Here and Now – The present moment is all we have.

𝟏𝟏. Patience and Reward – A patient mindset will reap the highest reward.

𝟏𝟐. Significance and Inspiration – The best reward is one that makes an impact.

Source: Michael M. Reuter (TML)

Food For Thought Friday

💡 We are what we remember.

💡 The most valuable thing you have is your attention.

💡 You can’t prepare for the future if you don’t remember the past.

💡 The great obstacle in life is often ourselves.

💡 Who are You? What do you do? Who do you do it for? Why do you do it?

💡 Your direction is more important than your speed.

💡 Failing is a byproduct of trying to succeed

💡 How are you helping others grow?

💡 Everybody is an expert in something.

💡 All experiences are individual no matter how similar they may seem.

Image: Fabrik Brands

Core Qualities

Our core qualities are effortless. It’s partly nature and nurture. They color what we see, how we behave, our interactions, etc. If we can express these core qualities in our work and daily life, we probably feel good. In actuality, it may be difficult not to exude these qualities.

What comes along with our core qualities? Consequences.

⚠ The first consequence is our pitfall. Too much of something good can have an adverse effect. If determination is our core quality, pushiness may be our pitfall.

⚠ The second is our challenge. Not being pushy requires patience. Interestingly, we often look for our challenge outside of ourselves (E.g., A patient partner).

⚠ The third is too much of our challenge becomes our allergy. Some people are so incredibly patient it may come across as passiveness. Determined people are allergic to passiveness.

The Core Quadrant can help us understand our idiosyncrasies.

For example, if your child or mate is your challenge, the consequence is that they are also your allergy.

Being able to identify and look beyond what unnerves us helps us see the beauty and value of others.

Adapted: Daniel Ofman – YouTube

Who Are You?

How well do you know you?

How well do you know other people?

Who are you?

In business, you may talk about your role (I’m a consultant). In life, you may talk about your role (I’m a mother).

Quick exercise: Describe yourself with a one-word adjective that starts with the same sound of your first name. I’ll go first, Radiant Ramona.

Now, the image we see of ourselves is not always the image the rest of the world sees.

Understanding how we are wired and the impact it has on other people requires operating from a conscious level. Too often, we navigate life on a subconscious level, making assumptions without getting to know the otherness of the other.

We have millions of patterns in our subconscious brain that determine how we interact with others. If we don’t challenge them through consciousness, things happen to us. We think we have no control over it, but we do.

We can have a new thought, at any time, about anything in our lives that we would like to be different. It starts with knowing you, knowing others, and understanding how to adapt and connect.

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” ~Carl Jung

Adapted: Scott Schwefel | TEDxBrookings

Speak Up

How often do we say what we think?

What is the risk if we do?

Many people feel they will be judged or face consequences if they say something that goes against popular opinion.

So they offer up something politically correct or adopt a code of silence.

👉 How does this play out in the workplace?

Imagine having a manager who notoriously assigns pressure-filled deadlines. Team members are stressed but are hesitant to speak up because the manager’s philosophy is those who cannot handle the pressure don’t belong in the role. Silence makes the situation worse. Team members feel powerless, and complaining becomes commonplace.

When we don’t speak up, it can give the appearance of approval.

There are certainly times when we should be silent, but other times when we need to get out of our comfort zones and say something.

Adapted: FS Brain Food No. 388

Commitment

Dear Leaders and Managers,

Are you committed to creating a culture of trust and collaboration?

If you answered yes, when was the last time you asked your team members:

✔ What are two to three things I can do differently to improve my leadership?

✔ How can I make our working relationship more effective?

✔ How are things going for you since we last spoke?

✔ What are the biggest challenges you’re facing?

✔ How can I support you?

✔ How’s the morale around you?

✔ How aligned do you feel with the company mission, vision, values?

✔ What is the most fulfilling aspect of your job?

✔ Are we providing enough growth opportunities for your role? If not, what’s missing?

✔ What’s something you want the C-Suite to know about you?

✔ What is one thing about our product or service you would improve?

We depend on people to help move our companies forward. When there is an absence of trust and collaboration, people are less willing to come together and often make disappointing progress.

It makes sense to have an authentic curiosity about the people we are delegating responsibilities to and to provide a safe environment to give/receive genuine constructive feedback.