Step Aside

ID-10035554Every day, we’re faced with a number of choices. One of those is how we perceive the different situations we’re faced with daily. Often we’re so determined to barrel ahead that we not only get in the way of others, we get in our own way.
When we take the time to look at what will support the greater good in a situation, we allow ourselves to expand, and in doing so, we also give others the opportunity to expand. When we’re busy trying to maintain control, we keep others and ourselves small.
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Face the fear
Why? Often it’s out of fear. Fear that if we let go, we’ll lose something. But what if we chose trust instead of fear and let ourselves be open to what the universe might bring us. All of us experience fear, but it’s in moving through the fear we expand, and provide the opportunity for greatness.
Reach for greatness
We can experience the fear and acknowledge it, but continue to move forward into the endless possibilities. The alternative is to stay small and in doing so, run the risk of not living out our purpose. We are all capable of so much, but few of us reach our potential.
“I learned that courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela
What if you got out of the way and let things unfold as they should?
Ask yourself these questions:
1.  In what ways are the conversations you are having with yourself keeping you small?  What conversation(s) would you have to give up about yourself to grow your existing greatness?
2.  How do you think others would describe you? Chances are they can see your greatness even when you can’t.
You might be amazed at what happens! Another great quote from Nelson Mandela ~
“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”
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Resources:
Books:
The Right Questions – Debbie Ford
Bookclips: An extraordinary person is an ordinary person who makes extraordinary choices.  Extraordinary people hold bigger visions for themselves.  They make choices consistent not only with the highest expression of themselves; also the greater good of the world.
We can’t be traveling east and west at the same time.  We are going either one way or the other.
Silence – Christina Feldman
Bookclips:  Silence is what frees us to listen well, to live with authenticity and to discover wholeness within ourselves. 
It takes immense courage to be willing to meet ourselves in silence. In silence we are visible ourselves. 
Articles: 
Challenging Negative Self-Talk: http://psychcentral.com/lib/2010/challenging-negative-self-talk/
Living Up to Your Greatness: http://www.poweredbyintuition.com/2011/06/12/how-to-overcome-fear-and-live-up-to-your-greatness/

Success and What It Really Means To You

ID-10041397What is success, really? Perhaps your beliefs about success are based on society’s definition and/or what you were brought up to believe. Is success for you money, prestige, public recognition…or could that be someone else’s view of success?
For many of us, our definition of success is based on a belief system resulting from past conditioning. How you define success may actually be holding you and others back. If you were to take the time to consider your present beliefs about success, you might see the ‘success’ you desire is being achieved at a high cost. The price might be paid in other areas of your life such as relationships, family or health, a cost many of us pay for our achievements.
Related: Simply More is an Executive Business Coach and Communication Consultant in Calgary.

Go deep
Take some time to reflect on success and what it means to you. What is REALLY important to you in your life? Is that where most of your attention is being focused? Family may be the most important thing in the world to you, but you may be spending most of your waking hours at work. If so, are you truly successful?
“A successful life is one that is lived through understanding and pursuing one’s own path, not chasing the dream of others.”  -Chin-Ning Chu
Reflecting on your beliefs about success may lead to redefining it. This may be a turning point—where you decide not to let others define it for you. No matter what we’ve achieved, many of us have a natural yearning for something ‘more in our lives’—the desire to be more, do more and have more. We may know what to do, but we aren’t taking the necessary actions to get there—to be healthier, to spend more time with our families, to take our careers to the next level. Often, we get in the way of our desires.
Get out of your own way
In his book “What Got You Here Won’t Get you There”, Marshall Goldsmith, one of the five most respected executive coaches by Forbes and a top-10 executive educator by the Wall Street Journal addresses the fundamental problems that often come with success, naming the 20 habits that hold us back from the top.
You – Reinvented
Perhaps it’s time to start the conversation. What do you want out of life? Really want out of life? This can be an opportune time to work with a coach to dig deep to get at your beliefs and explore them. And perhaps to redefine them.
Related: Simply More is a Business Consultant in Calgary specializing in executive coaching, team facilitation, and leadership training.

BOOKS:
What Got You Here Won’t Get You There – Marshall Goldsmith
Bookclips: The only natural law I’ve witnessed in three decades of observing successful people’s efforts to become more successful is this: People will do something-including changing their behavior-only if it can be demonstrated that doing so is in their own best interests as defined by their own values.
Bookclips: Take a look at work. Why are you there? What keeps you coming back day after day? Is it any of the big four-money, power, status, popularity-or is it something deeper and more subtle that has been developed over time?
Success Intelligence – Robert Holden
Bookclips: Relationships are the heart of success. How true is this for you?
Bookclips: If you cannot see yourself being successful at something, you will probably talk yourself out of trying. Or, if you can see you have a talent for something, you may find all sorts of inner strength and external help. All your decisions are based on what you see you are capable of and, also, what you think you deserve.
Resources/Articles:
What is Success – A Better Definition: http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/what-is-success-better-definition.html
Questions that Create Success: http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/10-questions-that-create-success.html
Steve Jobs explains the rules for success: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuNQgln6TL0

Would you rather be right or be happy?

Think back to times when you’ve been busy defending your position, telling your story, building the case for why you are right and the person or situation is wrong.
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What’s this all about?
In a word – Control. People who need to be right may be insecure; if they get validation from others, it means they’re in control. When they’re in control, they can make things turn out the way they want to happen.
The illusion
It’s all a myth. Being in control is an illusion. When we believe we can controls things, nothing bad will happen. But you can’t control people—you can’t make them do what you want them to do all the time. Being in a struggle for control is a zero sum game.
Related: Simply More offers Emotional Intelligence Workshops.
Black and white thinking
Try to live in the gray. There are thousands of shades of gray on the spectrum from black to white. Each of them provides a much richer telling of a story that is rarely as clear as this or that. Right vs. happy is more about the desire to be in control.
Our egos react when we feel we’re being attacked. We get on the bandstand with a megaphone or respond with a sledgehammer. All this does is help to build resentments. We dwell on the negativity, giving up valuable real estate in our minds to situations as we replay them over and over again. And we bring those negative emotions into new relationships, keeping us stuck in the past.
Here are some of the ways we behave when we’re stuck in this unhealthy pattern of needing to be right:
The Daily Victim. We wake up each day and rehearse the role of victim when we’re unwilling to forgive, holding tight to past hurt and resentment, replaying it in our minds repeatedly. This automatic replay reinforces the ego’s illusion and strengthens our victim perception. Eventually we identify so closely with the role of victim that we begin to establish that dynamic in many or all our relationships.
The Angry Boxer: When the ego feels attacked, its immediate response is to fight back. The ego believes in fear and in a cruel, merciless world Its always on the alert for another attack. Defensive thoughts and energy develop into a wicked cycle, creating more negative experiences.
The Shut-Down and Protected: The ego convinces this person to isolate from the world for fear of being hurt again. The result is living small and evading all potential conflict by avoiding intimacy completely.
Letting go of the need to be right and surrendering to forgiveness is the only way out of this nightmare. If we truly want to enjoy relationships, we need to respect others have a right to their opinion and there is more than one perspective in any situation.
Related: Simply More is an Executive Business Coach and Communication Consultant.

Choosing happiness is a full-time job
There are always as many choices as there are pros and cons and multiple views in every experience.  Allow yourself to see choice and then choose the best one:

  • Let go of your need to be right.
  • Stop playing the blame game – although a natural human being reaction, it leaves you powerless.
  • Be willing to be responsible for the square you are standing on in your life and in relationships.
  • Remember, our view is formed by a number of thoughts that create an experience in which we live as “the” reality.  There are a number of ways to view any situation.
  • Ask yourself, “What is it that I’m not seeing?”
  • Be willing and open to think differently and therefore see another view
  • Be compassionate – a willingness to see that you and they are doing the very best with all that is known

 “Admitting you were wrong about something isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of objectivity and maturity” – Unknown
“There are no facts, only interpretations.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
Some questions to ask yourself

  1. When in the middle of a conversation or situation, how often are you willing to try on other perspectives that may give you a clearer view?
  2. Where do you play the blame game? How does it impact your life?

BOOKS:
Leadership Wisdom – Robin Sharma
Bookclips: My role as a leader was really about freeing people’s strengths and allowing them the freedom to develop themselves….keys to this: keep my promises, listen aggressively, being consistently compassionate and becoming fanatically honest.
Reclaiming Higher Ground – Lance H.K. Secretan
Bookclips: Vince Lombardi was not a fan of fear and intimidation.  He led with love creating exhilaration within his team.  He coached them to greatness with love!
Resources/Articles:
Changing Your Perspective: http://www.thechangeblog.com/seven-creative-ways-to-change-your-perspective/
Changing Perspective to Solve Problems: http://timmilburn.com/5-questions-that-will-change-your-perspective-not-your-problem
The Cost of Being Right: http://www.douglasmagazine.com/resources/46-miscellaneous/91-the-huge-cost-of-being-right.html
 Related: Simply More is a Business Consultant in Calgary specializing in executive coaching, team facilitation, and leadership training

Leadership & EQ

What is emotional intelligence (EQ)?
ID-10098481EQ is a set of emotional and social skills that influence our self-perception and the ways in which we express ourselves, build and maintain relationships, cope with challenges and use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way.  EQ is the skill set that helps you deal successfully with the human dimension of business. It also impacts how well you utilize people to produce results and create a fulfilling work environment.
Related: Simply More offers Emotional Intelligence Workshops.
Why should you care about EQ?  
The single greatest influence on whether your people stay or leave is their relationship with you. It affects the level at which they are engaged or if they just do enough to get by.
EQ skills are the ingredients for “real” leadership.
It’s often not the smartest people who are the most successful or most fulfilled in life. There are many people who are academically brilliant and yet are socially awkward and unsuccessful at work or in their personal relationships. Intellectual intelligence (IQ) isn’t enough on its own to be successful in life. Your IQ can help you get into university, but it’s your EQ that will help you to manage the stress and emotions when facing your final exams.
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Emotional intelligence affects:

  • Your performance at work. Emotional intelligence can help you navigate the social complexities of the workplace, lead and motivate others, and excel in your career.
  • Your physical health. If you’re unable to manage your stress levels, it can lead to serious health problems. Uncontrolled stress can raise blood pressure, suppress the immune system, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, contribute to infertility, and speed up the aging process. The first step to improving emotional intelligence is to learn how to manage and relieve stress.
  • Your mental health. Uncontrolled stress may also impact your mental health, making you vulnerable to anxiety and depression. If you are unable to understand and manage your emotions, you’ll also be vulnerable to mood swings
  • Your relationships. An inability to form strong relationships can leave you feeling lonely and isolated. By understanding your emotions and how to control them, you’re better able to express how you feel and understand how others are feeling. This allows you to communicate more effectively and build healthier and stronger relationships, both at work and in your personal life.

There are four attributes that make up EQ:

  • Self-awareness – You are able to recognize your own emotions and how they affect your thoughts and behavior; you know your strengths and weaknesses, and you have self-confidence.
  • Self-management – You’re able to control impulsive feelings and behaviors, manage your emotions in healthy ways, take initiative, follow through on your commitments, and are able to adapt to changing circumstances.
  • Social awareness – You can understand and recognize the emotions, needs, and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues, feel comfortable socially, and recognize the power dynamics in a group or organization.
  • Relationship management – You know how to develop and maintain good relationships, can communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and manage conflict.

Experts say…out of control emotions make smart people stupid.
How to raise your emotional intelligence
All information going to the brain comes through our senses, and when this information is overwhelmingly stressful or highly emotional, our instincts take over and our reaction will be limited to the flight, fight, or freeze response. To access the wide range of choices and an ability to make good decisions, we need to be able to control our emotions and bring them into balance at will.
Emotions and memory are also strongly linked. By learning to use the emotional part of your brain as well as the rational, you can expand your range of choices when it comes to responding to a new event, but you’ll also factor emotional memory into your decision-making process. This can help with preventing you continually repeating earlier mistakes.
To improve your emotional intelligence—and your decision-making abilities—you need to understand and control the emotional side of your brain. How?
Developing five key skills can do help you raise your EQ. Master the first two skills, and the other three will be much easier to develop.
EQ consists of five key skills, each building on the last:

  • The capability to quickly reduce stress
  • The capability to recognize and manage your emotions
  • The capability to connect with others using nonverbal communication
  • The capability to use humor and play to deal with challenges
  • The capability to resolve conflicts positively and with confidence

Anyone can learn these five skills of emotional intelligence. But you need to do more than study them; you need to apply this knowledge to your life. When you are overwhelmed by stress, the best of intentions can fly out the window.
To permanently alter behavior in ways that stand up under pressure, the key is to learn how to take advantage of the powerful emotional parts of the brain that remain active and accessible even during times of stress. In a nutshell, this means you have to experience and practice these skills in your daily life—you can’t simply read about EQ and expect to master it.
Related Search: Simply More is a Business Consultant in Calgary specializing in executive coaching, team facilitation, and leadership training