The Best List You Will Ever Make to Be More Effective

We all have to-do lists, project objectives, metrics and planners to help keep us on track in our daily lives. Each year we set high expectations and even with these tools we find ourselves frustrated because we don’t have the structure, systems, or accountability in place to achieve our goals. Couple that with doubt and indecision and you have a perfect recipe for anxiety. In the worst case this leads to action paralysis.

Let’s talk about the best case. Most people know what they need to do to be happy, effective and thrive just not how to do it or what to do with doubt and fear. We spend enough time telling ourselves how we are not equipped to succeed and armoring up against failure by being risk averse. We wallow proficiently on what it is we need to do but spend less time feeling what it would be like to actually live the dream and executing a plan to get there. Guarding against danger is how we have evolved as a species and not become extinct.

We are Jedis at...

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How to Let Go

This week a very capable client was struggling with some of the work I am having her do around ‘doubt’ and ‘letting go.’ She said she “came up blank” on what she was angry about, what she can terminate right now, where she feels shame and what she feared.  

Questioning our thoughts and feelings often uncovers that they are assumptions and not true at all. These questions help you get deeply into the thoughts and feelings that hold you back - keep you guarded, resentful or powerless. Nobody wants to face them. But, if we don’t they chase us down the rest of our lives. Think of the last time you lashed out, withdrew, or quit something. What FEELING was at the heart of the behavior? I want you to be able to re-examine that feeling as to whether it is an assumption or really true. (This photo shows the process of finding the pause moment to accomplish this strategy.

She then shared that she does feel shame around weight and being...

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Impossible is Nothing

If I believed anyone who told me it was impossible to go from being a single mother of four children under seven-years-old on welfare to getting hired as a CEO it might have dragged me down. So I didn’t ask anybody if they thought I'd succeed. I just went about my work and goals as if I could not fail.

Over the last 20 years I have led organization with up to $26 million in assets. I increased trade show attendance 150% my first year as executive director of a trade association. I led a campaign to add a patient pavilion and healing garden when people said, “That will never happen.” And I led a $10.4 million capital campaign for a heart center, new ER and Women’s and Infants' Center on the heels of the largest hospital bankruptcy in U.S. history.

“Impossible” is just a lofty word thrown around by people who play it safe. It is a notion to believe that just because something isn’t mainstream or the norm it cannot be done. More significantly -...

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Why You're Failing at Embracing Your Success

If you ask the average person what they are most afraid of they will likely tell you something regarding failure – “I’ll make a mistake and embarrass myself.” “I won’t get picked.” “I will not pass the test.” “I will mess up and get fired.” “They won’t like me.”

Could You be Afraid of Success? 

As humans we are wired to protect ourselves from danger with a negativity bias. This is how we have survived as a species. We are always scouting for threat. Except today it is not likely that a Mammoth will trample us so this fight-or-flight bias often does not serve us well. And sometimes the threat we fear isn’t even failure. Sometimes it can actually be the unknown consequences of success.

ARGHHH you say.

Not you.

You can’t wait for the Holy Grail of career success, romance, a thin waste, a beach house, or if you live in Pittsburgh – two sunny days in a row to arrive. Stay with me...

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