Leading When Beliefs Go Rogue

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Labels, judgments, yeah buts, and other beliefs about the way things are can help but often stop helping us. They go rogue.

We can tell that a belief has gone rogue on us in two ways. First, we feel bad when we think it. We often attribute the bad feeling to whatever we’re considering. “I feel bad because she’s this way, he’s that way, I’m this way, and things are going badly the other way.” But it’s really a signal from the wiser parts of us warning that we’re thinking about things in a less than helpful way. Second, we aren’t getting the results we want.

Our hard work as leaders is not in making things happen or getting people to do good stuff. It’s in tuning our thinking–especially long-held but rogue beliefs–to what feels better.  And this makes way for people to do good stuff and for good things to happen.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Yes, you are that powerful, dear leader.

 

Today’s photo credit: johnrothiemurchus Over the parapet via photopin (license)

This Statement

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You deserve and are perfectly equipped to live a fully happy, rich, and meaningful life.

This is not a trite fortune cookie message. It is powerful perspective that many of us are missing and that all of us can adopt and realize. Despite what we may have heard, no one gets hurt if we believe this statement. In fact, everyone benefits when we do.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Yes. All of us.

PPS: Many of us will tumble into a fit of “yeah buts” (such as, “Yeah, but I’m too old now,”) upon considering this statement. All our “yeah buts” are baseless. Others will misinterpret it to mean that we somehow have to leap into action to make stuff happen. Nope.

PPPS: Start by appreciating how true it already is.

Today’s photo credit: Josh Kenzer strangers. via photopin (license)

The One Thing We Forget About Getting Stuff Done

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Do=Natural flow of action, Will=Our inner game
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We spend much of our energy on getting everything done either by ourselves or through others. But there never seems to be enough time. So we stress and steam and push and plead to get everyone into action and producing.

But we regularly leave out one thing that would simplify things and speed the results we seek: trust.

When we trust that everything works out for us, that others are fundamentally good, and that we can handle anything that comes up, we pave the way. People gain confidence, we are not bogged down in stress, and results come shockingly quickly and well.

Most of us have seen how this trust works. But in the tension of the day and against the backdrop of the what the world generally believes, we forget. The sooner we remember that the key is, “believing is seeing”–not the other way around–the easier it will be.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: This version of trust means that we feel good about the desired results–as if they have already occurred–before they actually show up. If we feel bad, we aren’t trusting and will fall back into the slower, more stressful way: doing stuff to make things happen.

PPS: What does it look like to feel good before the results show up? It will be different for each person. To get started, try doing a ladder exercise with “how it is now” at the bottom of the ladder and the desired results at the top. Once you get to the feeling at the top, it will be very easy to see how to trust, feel good, and jump into inspired action.

PPPS: And it will become easy for others to pick up on your excitement and get inspired themselves.

PPPPS: Trust does not supplant action. As we trust, we will see the next best thing to do: make that call, write that note, work that spreadsheet. But we won’t be acting to feel better and cause a result. That’s so important.

 

Today’s photo credit: Ulf Bodin Uppsala, March 21, 2015 via photopin (license)

Choose the Story

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The story we tell drives our results. Tell a story of how rough it is, how terrible they are, how blah blah blah and our results will match. How could they not? Tell a story of how good it is, how capable they are, how la la la and our results will match our story again.

Here’s the kicker: if we tell a story of how good it is but subtly repeat to ourselves some trope about how it won’t last, how we’re not that worthy, how okay is good enough, etc. then our results will match even that story.

Though they are not as easy to notice, we can tell that these old limiting stories are there because they feel bad and because our results prove them out. As soon as we notice bad feelings or results, we get to choose a new story then and there.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Practice this noticing and choosing until the new stories replace the old ones.

 

Today’s photo credit: docoverachiever Back to the house at Pooh Corner via photopin (license)

Swayed By Reality

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Do=Natural flow of action, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 2 min.

The sages tell us that the formula for creating any outcome is belief->actions->results. This is a leverage formula. We leverage action into results because we know that taking concerted action generates more results than our default, reactive action.

We usually forget the first, more powerful part of the formula. Focused belief generates better actions (and therefore much better results) than our default, habitual beliefs.

Here’s an example. Let’s say that we want to convince someone to change a behavior and that this person has resisted changing in the past. In our habitual beliefs, we may think of this person as hard to deal with, lazy, obstructive, or untalented.

But what if we changed our belief?

Which belief would better support our goal of getting them to change: that they are hard to deal with, for instance, or easy to deal with?

“Ah,” you argue, “you are ignoring reality. What if they really are hard to deal with?”

But that’s the power of this formula. Thinking that they are what we have thought they are leaves little room for something to shift. Choosing to believe something new about them (despite what we have been believing and calling reality) blasts open the door to different actions and results.

The trick is not to be swayed by “reality.”

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Of course, this trick works for anything we want, not just in getting others to change.

PPS: A great way to know when an old belief is getting in the way is that it feels bad. Let a bad feeling tell you it’s time to choose a new belief.

 

Today’s photo credit: Andrew Stawarz Nymans Garden View via photopin (license)

Inspire

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If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.

–John Quincy Adams

We start by reminding ourselves that others are completely capable of dreaming, learning, doing, and becoming more.

This is what to tap, good leader.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 
Today’s photo credit: John Quincy Adams via photopin cc

Open the Door to More

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in We=All Who Matter
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If we persist in thinking that there’s something fundamentally wrong with them, us, or the situation, then we will be locked into our current levels of success…or less.

Our job, good leader, starts with the belief in a spark of good, intelligence, and possibility in everyone. We quietly and assuredly call these out of ourselves and others. We then stay curious, wondering how it will all unfold.

This is the way we open the door to more, better, and happier. This is how we make our happen.

 

In your corner,

Mike

Today’s photo credit: Keys are on the door! via photopin (license)

soar

Cause Their Performance To Soar

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Communicating our belief in others’ ability to accomplish something–even if it’s difficult, even if they’ve never done it before–is an essential leadership talent.

Such a vote of confidence awakens their talents, increases their engagement, and causes their performance to soar.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Part of the trick is not thinking that we are being merely delusional.

 

photo credit: Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400, AMS via photopin (license)