A comic strip I found in 2010 reminded me of a lesson hard-learned: A skill over-used, or a strategy wrongly applied, can be a fast path to disaster.
Heart Forward + Head High = Fully Alive
In this blog David Taylor-Klaus offers up some of his thoughts & theories, musings & mumblings, and contents & concepts. Read, enjoy, and comment ...
My father passed away a month ago. In his eulogy, I wrote, "it's ironic that the man with a beautiful, limitless heart battled a failing heart for three decades. The magical part is that he never let the failing tissue define him. What defined him was his love and his playful, teen-age exuberance." I wonder how he would have answered had I thought to ask him the question: "What defines you?" (There are so many questions I wish I had asked him.)
Is it the end of the year already? Really?! It's hard for us to believe how fast the year went. It's been full of stretching and growth, set-backs and leaps forwards, upheaval and joy. With 2013 mere days away, we find the words of Stephen R. Covey coming to mind: "How different our lives are when we really know ..."
When was the last time a comic strip kicked you in the gut? In 2005 a "Rhymes With Orange" strip hit a nerve, turning my attention to my inner critic - that hyper-critical, judgmental voice that catalogs our failures and dismisses our successes.
Since there is no "Inner-Critic-ectomy," I had to learn how to be with him when he shows up ...
stagnant water loses its purity,
and in cold weather becomes frozen;
even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind.
I got curious ... Where am I frozen? Where am I choosing inaction? Where am I losing my edge? What is available to me that I'm not using?
I spent Sunday watching my riding buddies disappear up the hill ahead of me. At first, I was pissed that they were ahead of me. And then I started this mantra: "I've got nothing to prove, and no one to prove it to." I realized that it's not about measuring myself against anyone else, it's about competing with myself to get to where I want to be.
I have recommitted to making the time for myself in the midst of everything else ... in service of being more present for my family and my work. Yes, I've lost my edge, for now. BUT ... I am back on the bike, moving, pushing, clearing out the cobwebs.
That's what's available to me. What about you?
David Taylor-Klaus is a Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Life Coach and a Partner in Touchstone Coaching. His passion is working with busy "40-somethings" to build profitable businesses, raise thriving families and create fulfilling lives.
My untouched to-do list was with me, in my laptop bag, in the trunk, following me home ... mocking me. I could wallow in the stress or choose a different path. How often do you notice yourself tolerating the stress?
Vision Statement? Check! Most entrepreneurs stop there. While valuable, a Vision Statement alone is insufficient to inspire, to drive, to lead your company. You need to take it a step further. Your company needs a Vision Story. More importantly, YOU need a Vision Story ... first.
You have a complete, prioritized To-Do List. The hard part's done, right? Not so fast. Without structure for the execution part, your list becomes a trap in 2 different ways. Here's how scribbling and playing with blocks can help you reduce the stress and still be effective.
"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
-- Albert Einstein
A 7th grade teacher once said to my ADHD child, "If you would just focus more, you'd understand this better." The teacher may as well have asked my daughter to be taller. Bex is, and always has been a beautifully dynamic and creative soul. She lives in the moment and from her heart so effortlessly.
Judging her by her ability to focus rather than her ability to learn dismissed her strengths, her individuality and her genius. And it demeaned her.
How much longer will you judge yourself? How much longer will you demand things of yourself that are beyond your capacity?
You are a genius. (If Einstein said it, it must be true!)
Leadership is about setting people up for success. That's why the language we use is essential. I believe that taking a leadership position in your own life is a prerequisite for leading others. It's time to start with your own language. I came across a very illuminating story last week ...