Mindset for Self-Coaching— 4 Critical Elements for Getting Started.

4 tips on how to see ourselves from other people’s point of view.

Daily Quote:

“We never see ourselves as others see us…”  Eric Hoffer 

” O would some power the gift to give us the ability to see ourselves as others see us. ” Robert Burns, Scot Poet (1759 – 1796)   

Self-Reflection: How do we see ourselves? Effective self-coaching involves seeing ourselves as mixture of our ability to think clearly, see ourselves as others see us and being open to learning and change. Many times in life our mental set about ourselves and how we impact other people can be taken for granted or mis-perceived. Many times in our busy day to day activities we are operating in a vacuum or on automatic pilot and in order to move forward and continue growing we must work on developing open and flexible ways to gather more information. Our ability to develop this open perspective toward ourselves is the foundation for all self-coaching. This open approach to personal change allows us to use self-coaching tools, such as feedback to not only adjust our thinking but to enhance our effectiveness to change habits and behavior.

For example, the art and science of public speaking or presenting are learned, as well as the skills to handle different situations and audiences. When this is recognized you can use deliberative practice tools by yourself or in conjunction with a good coach or teacher to figure out the steps to do something better by using your time and space to practice and learn more constructive ways to reach our full potential as a fully functioning person. With time and good support, every person can discover their own ways to become a more effective and efficient communicator.

1. Reflection

Self-coaching also involves an ongoing process of reflection. We need to view our lives as an ongoing exercise in experiential learning, and we need to obtain the necessary critical distance to be able to observe and reflect upon our experiences, while also fully inhabiting those experiences in the moment. The precise steps we take in this process will look different for each of us, and they will vary over time, but it’s critical to regularly engage ourselves in conversation and to develop the habitual practices that support this reflection.

2. Self-Awareness

An important product of this reflection is increased self-awareness, by which I mean both a heightened in-the-moment perception of how we respond to various situations and a deeper understanding over time of who we are as individuals. Our immediate perception of our physical and emotional responses to situations is often blunted–it’s only in retrospect that we fully understand what we were feeling. Honing this in-the-moment awareness of our responses allows us to expand the range of options available to us and to make choices that will best support our goals in any given situation.

Over time this heightened perception contributes to a deeper understanding of ourselves. We learn more about our tendencies and preferences, and patterns in our behavior (with certain people, in certain settings, at certain moments) begin to reveal themselves. We can then capitalize on these patterns, exploiting those that work to our advantage and challenging (or avoiding) those that work to our disadvantage.

3. Committment to Personal Change

At some level self-coaching is all about change. Changing how we spend our time so we’re more fulfilled, and changing our behavior so we’re more effective. Doing more of what’s working in our lives, and doing less of–or stopping entirely–what’s not helping us reach our desire results.  We may even want to change the direction of our lives in a more comprehensive way, and all large changes result from a series of small smart steps using the Plus1 performance technique.

4.  Clarity of Personal Values and Vision 

Our self-coaching efforts occur within a context defined by our personal values and our vision for ourselves. If self-coaching is a sequence of steps to help us effect positive change in our lives, then our values and our vision are the source of meaning and purpose in our lives, the underlying rationale for the changes we seek to make.

It’s important at the very beginning of self-coaching to identify the critical values that drive our action and to establish a vision of the future. Where you want to be after your self-coaching experience? Values and vision are the underpinning for self-coaching success because they ground us in what is important in our lives and where we we want to go. These values and vision will be rechecked through your self-coaching actives and will be refined by the end of your experience. Although we will be working on many of the elements that roll-up into a vision or provide clarity on your priority values in life through smart-step activities and structured exercises I think having an overall direction and “big picture” for self-coaching  is critical for your success.

Self-Coaching Challenge: Over the next week reflect on these 4 elements for Self-Coaching. Use the scale 1 -not ready to 10 absolutely ready. After your evaluation commit to either finding a coach to get get you started or if you are ready for self-coaching do something to get started, like reading articles or a book on self-coaching.  

Self-Mastery and Skill Development Using the Plus 1 Mastery Process for Change

The Plus 1 Mastery Process for Personal Change

Here is the learning process: Tell me… show me… let me practice… coach me.

In attempting to change behavior it is important to look at an “old true and tried” principle of learning called the law of frequency. The law of frequency suggests that the more a person practices the correct and desired behavior, the higher the probability there is to use the desired behavior.  This principle is often called “drill and practice”. Most coaches and movie directors use this technique to encourage their players or actors to practice under many different situations until they get it right and the behavior feels natural.  Remember, practice makes permanent only, perfect practice makes perfect.

The key building block in using the law of frequency in training is to create what we call the PlusOne Mastery Learning Sequence:

  • The sequence starts by learning and understanding the specific skill you are trying to change one step at a time while adding each new step to the preceding learned steps until all steps are mastered.
  • The “chucking principle” is a key component of the Mastery Learning sequence. This principle suggests that a complex skill can be learned most efficiently when the skill is broken down into small parts.  Each part is mastered separately and then the parts are practiced together adding one “chunk” at a time until all of the chunks are integrated and the complex skill is mastered
  • Once learned the skill set is enhanced by putting in-place a continuous improvement process which involves a feedback loop on where you are now by examining what you are doing well and what improvements you need to stay at the mastery level.
  • Learning and using this simple and straight forward “Plus 1 Mastery” process will improve your self-awareness of effective behavioral patterns and can help identify areas for improvement so that you can overcome and transcend present limits of leadership styles into a strength based approach for continuous professional development.




Part1: New Year Resolutions–What does Evidence -Based Research Reveal About Secrets of Willpower

The start of a New Year is always special. For me there is always a feeling of renewal as we look to a new year, a reflection back to the year that has passed and a new beginning. I have a sense of excitement for keeping things that are working, making changes or adopting new habits to make the year even better than the last year. However, do you ever find yourself making New Year’s resolutions and setting goals only to abandon them as the New Year tick docks away.

So I decided to check the research and selected the nationwide survey done in 2013 by Opinion Corporation of Princeton, New Jersey which I found to be very interesting and insightful on this topic of setting and completing resolutions. The bottom line is that 3 out of 4 people are not successful in completing their resolutions In addition, according to this research study, if you are happy you probably don’t set any resolutions. Unhappy people set resolutions more than happy especially in regard to money goals, 59% to 41%. So if you do not complete your goals for the New Year you are not alone.

So the question becomes what are some of the secrets and ways to set and fulfill your New Year Resolutions?

Studies now show that self-control is a limited resource that may be strengthened by the foods we eat. Laughter and conjuring up powerful memories may also help boost a person’s self-control. And, some research suggests, we can improve self-control through practice, testing ourselves on small tasks in order to strengthen our willpower for bigger challenges.

Learning to bring your behavior under control even with arbitrary rules does build character in that it makes you better able to achieve the things you want to achieve later on,” said Dr. Baumeister. “Self-control is a limited resource and is depleted more you use it.. People make all these different New Year’s resolutions, but they are all pulling off from the same pool of your willpower. It’s better to make one resolution and stick to it than make five.”

In Part 2 on New Year Resolutions we will discuss techniques and tools to support your goal of personal change for 2014. Stay tune. Coach Mark

Introducing the Self-Coaching Plus One Model for Self-Development

Plus 1 Self-Coaching for Self-Development

“Ever more people today have the means to live, but no meaning to life for.” Viktor Frankl

Those individuals who are truly growing and happy in their lives are on a quest to discover their purpose for living.  Our self-coaching, person-centered development model, supports the journey for finding and creating a more fulfilling purpose in life. Fulfilling our purpose for being is a natural condition of living and is critical for living a more satisfying life by finding our strengths and gifts to make a positive contribution and difference in this complex and vexing world.

The Plus-One “process with structure” approach is unique in the world of coaching. We have investigated and researched the “best-in-class” ways to create a positive learning approach for personal change. At the core of our philosophy are proven methods to motivate and inspire our client’s to discover  and change their thinking and behavior through perseverance, patience and practice. We encourage clients to uncover and focus on their responsibility to make their own choices in life. The self-coaching activities are designed to emphasize the individual’s inherent right to choose and support their own development focused on their purpose, worth and dignity. 

Unlike traditional one-one coaching the plus-one process  is based on self-direction using the process of discovery and client choice. The individual is his own coach and counselor. The “process with structure” framework support the individual through guided exercises on self-awareness, strengths identification, goal setting and self-development challenges. It encourages individuals to choose what changes they want to make in order to fulfill their needs and reach their full potential. The “process with structure” activities are designed to uncover information and support reflective thinking to establish Smart-Steps and Plus 1 practices to bring about the personal changes and new behavior desired.

Once you understand the Smart-Step Process you are on the road to significant personal change and getting unstuck.  Specific change goals replace other people’s expectations and help you focus on what is really your purpose and important priorities in your life. Being and living in the moment is critical to developing confidence. It means learning to trust and believe in your ability to accept the challenge. Developing this change posture means that you must accept more vulnerability and take more risk. Trust is directly related to your ability to be open and for you to be experienced as authentic by others. Specific approaches are designed in the “process with structure” approach to challenge your present mental maps and behaviors so as to lead you to do what you set out to do to live a more purposeful and fulfilling life.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            


CHOICE— What Does EXCELLENCE Look Like In Your Life?



Modification and Update of Tom Peter’s In Search of Excellence 

EXCELLENCE is not an “aspiration.” Or “Purpose statement”


 EXCELLENCE is your next conversation.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is your next productive presentation and meeting.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is shutting up and listening—really listening.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is your next customer contact.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is saying “Thank you” for something “small.”

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is the next time you shoulder responsibility and give the credit away.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is waaay over-reacting to a screw-up or other people’s inappropriate behavior

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is the donuts or flowers you brought to work today.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is lending a hand to someone  who’s fallen behind schedule.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is  learning  the way folks in finance or HR] think.and feel

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is waaay “over”-preparing  for a 10-minute presentation.

Or not.

EXCELLENCE is turning “insignificant” tasks into one-step at time significant changes and models of …


Or not.




Philosophy of Self-Directed Solution Coaching -The C.A.R.E. Framework

People who are using CARE say: “It helps me focus on my strengths and the future I want, rather than the past or problems”.

CARE®—Stands for:

1. Constructive & Clear Goals

2. Awareness–Self and others (relatedness)

3.  Responsible and Rational Thinking ( Certainty and control)

4. Engagement through Meaningful Self-Coaching practices. (autonomy and independence)  

CARE® is a philosophical and practical, self-discovery and effective communication system developed by Mark W. Hardwick, Ph.D. from research and interviews of people who have experienced business, political, interpersonal and life happiness. The target for this  “process with structure” are people who are continuously trying to create meaning and live a life on purpose through effective mental and behavioral life strategies and tools.

CARE is designed to:

  • Increase caring activities to overcome barriers of self-destructive thinking and behaviors.
  • Challenge false assumptions and perceptions about who you are and where you want to go. Focus on mental maps and mental toughness.
  • Identify and change thinking by accepting the past and feelings. Then executing behaviors to create a meaningful and improved Quality of life.
  • Increase personal empowerment and skills to achieve personal goals and dreams by finding balance between your inner and outer lifes.

CARE is a structured system with proven and powerful tools and processes to monitor uncomfortable and distressing symptoms. The system can help you modify or eliminate those unwanted responses and behaviors by using clear, concise solutions and constructive daily actions. This includes methods for how you want others to treat and respond to you both in ordinary circumstances and difficult situations. These new behaviors and responses will help you grow, develop and live your life on purpose and with meaning.

Self-Directed Solution Coaching (SDSC) is a personal development framework focused on present realities, personal strengths and new mental maps to meet the demands and desired wants for the future. The framework uses cognitive behavior change process and reality ‘target coaching conversations’, as a new way of thinking, feeling, self- talking and behaving.

This coaching framework is grounded and based upon neurology research, social psychology and rational-emotive change philosophy. It focuses on what clients want to achieve through coaching rather than on past issues or problems. The approach focuses on the past only in order to activate conversations about solutions, resources and past successes. Predominantly, it purposefully activates and focuses conversations on the present and future.

Critical developmental tools of the SDSC “structure with process” are  “plus one exercises” and “smart-step change” methods designed to challenge old habits and  invite the self-directed coaching process to envision a preferred future. The self-coach learns by focusing on self-awareness and insights into personal strengths that motivate the person in the direction of positive small dose activities for constructive and continuous personal change. To support this, questions are asked about the self-coach’s  story, strengths and resources; and especially, about any exceptions to perceived problems and reasons for not taking action. In the “structure with process” system focus on what you will do and not on what you won’t do is a powerful source and motivation for personal development and change. Get specific. Be realistic. Be optimistic. Have clarity on end point and how many steps it will take to reach your goal. Be mentally tough in recognizing and removing distractions. Train your inner critic to be more self-compassionate when things fail or don’t go as you desire they would.

The Self-Directed Solution coaching framework believes personal change is already constant. By helping people identify positive directions for change in their life and to attend to changes currently in process they wish to continue. The SDSC structure help people construct a concrete vision and a purposeful plan to create a preferred future for themselves.

Self-awareness, self-determination, personal responsibility, empowerment, and self-advocacy are essential to implementing the Self-Directed Coaching Process.

The following core assumptions are at the root of Self-Directed Solution Coaching and provide key ideas that drive the practice and techniques of this coaching framework:

  • Change is constant, inevitable, and contagious. And successful people need to learn how to deal with change and embrace it.
  • Self-Directed solution-building conversations identify, elaborate, and reinforce positive change in behavior.
  • You are THE “expert” on your life. The Self-Coaching “structure with process”  framework is designed to support and amplify this expertise by building on self-awareness and strengths of the coach–YOU
  • The presumption that change is all we can count on in life and that it will occur, creates an atmosphere empowerment and autonomy  of “when,” not “if.”
  •  You have strengths, resources, and managerial coping skills that drive change while generating optimism and hope for living a more constructive and meaningful life.


Plus One Technique: Showing Appreciation the MMFI Rule

Daily Quote: “Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, Make Me Feel Important. Not only will you succeed in sales, you will succeed in life.” Mary Kay Ash

I think that this Plus One technique of Making Others Feel Important (MMFI)is a very powerful way to provide a climate for excellence in performance. Many employees tell me that they seldom or hardly ever receive any appreciation for a job well done from their managers. Appreciation or acknowledgement are at the heart of creating a positive climate at work. Noticing the effort and commitment of employees can be one of the strongest motivators for reinforcing and encourage the highest quality of work. Positive feedback which is delivered immediately after the action takes place sends a strong message that a person’s has been noticed and appreciated. The message from many managers who ignore the good works of employees is that you are expected to perform at high levels and the only time you will hear from a manager is when you screw-up. This “management by exception” method leaves employees in the dark and feels like they are only going to be recognized when things have gone wrong.In my experience this management approach is demoralizing and creates a”cover your ass” culture.

Self-Coaching Challenge: How will you make someone feel important today? Who is it you are going to make the effort to MAKE THEM FEEL IMPORTANT? Remember to be specific in your statement of appreciation and genuine. To see more on the use of the MMFI Rule see my past post http://wp.me/pnKb1-1Vn. This post will provide more specifics on this powerful management concept.
Over the next week keep track of the MMFI you handout and capture the events in your Personal Leadership Journal. Making this type of behavior a part of who you are will not only lift the spirits of employees but also make you feel good.

Dealing with Interpersonal Conflict–A Framework for effective communication.

Framework for Resolving Interpersonal Conflict 

1. Challenge your assumptions about the person’s intentions and shortcomings, gather data and information on both sides of an issue. Thus, avoiding the “confirmation bias” the villain that undermines open and direct communication  Be matter of fact in presenting information and ask open-ended questions to find-out other person’s concerns and story about a situation.

2.    Explore Differences and Perceptions about what happened or isn’t happening. Before moving on —Identify Problem to be discussed in this session.

3.   Sharpen the Difference or Agreement–establish priorities for change

4.    Identifying and Exploring– making the relationship a personal win solution for other person

5.   Get Commitment – Identify Action Plan – Follow-Up by Plus 1 and Smart-steps for change framework

6.   Follow-up with Continuous Improvement checkpoints and Feedback Loops to support change and open communication.

Try this structure for your next interpersonal conflict situation, I promise it will provide a powerful and effective way to create a positive climate for communicating and promote behavior change.

Part III Improving Meeting Dynamics: Learning About Barriers For Ineffective Communication

This post is a follow-up to Part I and Part II on Improving Meeting Dynamics. I wanted to unpack these issues of communication before  sharing ideas on roles and task needs for groups

 Communication approaches that block effectiveness and undermine personal connections in group meetings.

  JUDGING – evaluating or judging the other person or his/her status or ideas.  This involves not listening for reasons or explanations, but instead putting the ideas down or implying the other person is wrong.

CONTROLLING – trying to change or restrict someone’s behavior or attitude by imposing a set of values or beliefs on them.  A person who engages in this behavior has a high need to be in control of others and the situation.

SUPERIORITY – communicating a feeling of superiority in position, power, or ability that implies the other person can’t be right because of his/her inadequacies.  There tends to be a sense of one-upmanship and “know it all” expert to this approach.

CERTAINTY – communicating in a manner that implies the person knows all the answers and does not need or desire any additional information.  There is a high need to be right, even to the point of winning an argument rather than solving a problem.

  • INDIFFERENCE – showing a lack of interest or concern for the feelings or welfare of the other person that implies what the other person is saying is unimportant. This approach to interpersonal communication undermines the ability to relate to one another and reduces trust a key element of connecting with others.
  • MANIPULATING – communicating with hidden motives and agendas. This negative factor undermines openness and in a way signals that you are willing to meet one’s own needs without the regard to the impact on others. This type of communication has a real “gotcha” feel to it.

Self-Coaching Challenge: During the next day or two identify which communication barrier is one that you often use when  interacting with your team. Then begin to map-out a new more positive approach using the Plus 1 and Smart-step approach for personal change. 

Daily Quote, Reflection and Self Coaching Challenge: Mental Toughness and Your Belief in Yourself

Daily Quote: “If you believe in yourself and have the courage, the determination, the dedication, the drive, and if you are willing to sacrifice the little things in life and pay the price for the things that are worthwhile, it can be done.” V. Lombardi

 Reflection: When Coach Lombardi talks about “it” in the above quote I think he is referring to your dreams and goals in life. Although his focus and success was in professional football, there is know doubt that his commitment to excellence and winning provide many lessons on leadership. The X factor for him in the success of a leader was mental toughness. For him MT was the ultimate test of both the heart and the mind of a person in the face of challenges, pressure and stress. The key to success in stressful situations means facing your fears and pressure and “leaning-in” to be energized rather than becoming overwhelmed by the situation.

Self-Coaching Challenge:   Using the Stop, Identify, Reflect, then Act technique take the risk to tackle an ongoing problem in your life. The problem to work on is your choice–it could be a career issue surrounding a miserable boss, or your sense of non-engagement at work or a relationship issue with your partner or any other issue that you have been putting off or denying is draining energy and your sense of happiness. Some of you will need a little more structure or jump-start to get going so try this technique: Say it is a miserable job problem–imagine yourself in three different spaces, in each of which you can spend next year trying a job in which your passion and talents meet the needs of the world. What three jobs would you be excited to try? After this fantasy trip capture in your reflection and leadership journal the things that were different and exciting about these jobs, things that were about the same, and things that were worst. Now identify what you want to do and what is blocking you from getting started. Good Luck and keep us informed about your progress.  

Team Meetings Boring and Lacking Ideas? Try Plus 1 Technique for Change

Lacking Team Ideas: Try increasing conflict and debate by using the Plus 1 Technique 

For some time now I have been sharing the idea of how to change personal habits and behaviors by using the Plus One technique. Recently, I came across an article in HBR that reinforced the power of using the Plus 1 tool for working with teams. Essentially, the article was talking about how to avoid the Abilene Paradoxor group think.  They were concerned about dearth of ideas some teams come up with because of the fear of debate and conflict. The authors go to say the following: “ When ideas are still being developed or decisions still being considered, criticism and constructive conflict are vital to testing the value of the ideas and helping increase that value. Conflict is an indicator that diverse viewpoints are being considered and that the competition for ideas is still ongoing. During this competition, ideas are strengthened through further research, consideration or through the blending of different ideas into one stronger concept. By contrast, when everyone in a group always agrees, it can indicate that the group doesn’t have very many ideas, or that they value agreement more than quality suggestions”

The case study that caught my attention was how PIXAR used conflict and debate to create better ideas that produced many of their blockbuster films.

During the long process of idea generation and creating exciting and engaging films the creative teams at Pixar rely on criticism to make their work stronger. They focus on keep the benefits of criticism without the negativism by using idea called “plussing.” Plussing means that anytime someone comments on another work, that comment must contain a “plus” — a way to improve or build on the work. Plussing gives the director or animator something they need besides just a critique, it gives them a place to build from and improve their work. Through plussing, Pixar has found a formula for keeping criticism positive, while positively improving the quality of their work.

Whether you rely on centuries old techniques like the devil’s advocate, new methods such as plussing, or just choose to postpone meetings until someone brings in a counterpoint, your teams will make better decisions when you cultivate a little positive criticism. See complete article at HBR Blog http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2013/07/how_criticism_creates_innovati.html

Self-Directed Learning and Discovery Principles for Personal Change

Daily Quote: “The crux of leadership development that works is self-directed learning: intentionally developing or strengthening an aspect of who you are or who you want to be, or both.” Daniel Goleman, Author of Emotional Intelligence

Reflection: In my ongoing search for the essence of leadership and identifying what works and doesn’t is that leaders arise out of experiences, knowledge of how people work together in teams to accomplish more than they can alone, feedback from others on their success and failures and the willingness and openness to change.

We really don’t know how the world works either as leaders or followers. We only perceive how  organizations, teams and individuals work or don’t work from our unique perception; and our perceptual viewpoint , core values and beliefs our are based upon life experiences, who we are, what we are aware of and how we integrate all these things into our daily behaviors in the world around us. 

Here are the principles of  a self-discovery mental model that lead to changes and learning: 

1. Values and Beliefs influence our view of the world

2.  Perception of present and past experiences color our self- awareness. Thus awareness becomes our reality.

3. Reality sets our mental maps and suggests possibilities for the future. Possiblities open us to opportunities and away from problems. This mental set of possibilities generate alternatives for action.

4. Our choices determine our behavior and build habits and determine our impact and results.


Outcomes impact beliefs and facilitates openness to personal change. 

Savoring the Moment vs Watching life past you Bye–Learn a new Scientific Approach to Happiness

Daily Quote: “It’s so beautiful here. I want to come back someday!” “It takes all my persuasive powers, to try to convince her that she is already here.” Elizabeth Gilbert 

Reflection: Many people get “stuck” because they are not living in the “here and now” and are not paying attention to experiencing the full pleasure of the moment. Their focus is on the past and what could have been except for bad decisions or a lack of luck. Or they get focused on the ‘what if’s of the future that they do not experience, let alone enjoy, what’s happening right now. We are eating a delicious filet mignon and think, “This is not as good as what I had last week at a much better price.” We are enjoying a run of significant revenue increases because of our relationship with a new client and think, “I hope they keep hiring us for these projects but I am not sure they will because they are talking to other vendors.”

We put enormous amounts of energy into comparing present experiences with past experiences or wondering about what can go wrong in the future. These “disaster fantasies” distract us from enjoying and fully experiencing the moment. Instead, I would recommend staying in the moment and focus or be aware of  whatever you’re doing at the present moment that is creating this wonderful thing—what psychologists call savoring. “This could be small things like enjoying your wonderful lunch with a caring and exciting client or colleague,  taking a warm shower after a run on the beach, or embracing the feedback of a wonderful presentation.  You could be savoring a success or savoring eating your favorite dessert,” explains Dr. Lyubomirsky, a psychologist at the University of California at Riverside and author of The How of Happiness. In this book the author identifies many scientific proven ways to purse happiness not as a “hit and miss” self-help approach but a s a deliberative and proven way to change your happiness quotient. Usually it involves staying in the moment and enjoying your present experience.

The flip side of worrying is ruminating, thinking bleakly about events in the past over and over again. So, if you focus your attention into the now, rumination ceases. Savoring forces you into the present, so you can’t worry about things that aren’t there.

Challenge: Today count the number of times you stop to savior the moment in your life? If it is two or three try to increase the number in the next week. Capture these moments and how they make you feel in your Self-Coaching journal.

Daily Quote and Reflection by Bill Bradley-Synergistic Teamwork Formula 1+1 =3

Daily Quote: Bill Bradley, a great basket ball player for the New York Nicks and US Senator, once summarized teamwork saying, “Respect your fellow human being, treat them fairly, disagree with them honestly, enjoy their friendship, explore your thoughts about one another candidly, work together for a common goal and help one another achieve it.”  

Reflection: Following his thoughts, I feel will help you go along way to building a truly effective and transforming team. You will address employees’ needs to feel valued and respected by creating the climate for trust and support of a synergistic team being able to accomplish more than they could by themselves. I call this the Synergistic Team Effect.

Self-Coaching Challenge: 

Identifying the obstacles that block your team from being more synergistic. Once identify use the Smart-Step model or Plus 1 Principle to help open up constructive dialogue to see if your team can problem solve on how to eliminate these barriers.

Daily Quote, Reflection and Challenge: Understanding Reality

Daily Quote: “The only reality I can possibly know is the world as I perceive and experience it at this moment. The only reality you can possibly know is the world as you perceive and experience it at this moment. And the only certainty is that those perceived realities are different”. –Carl Rogers, A way of Being

Reflection: Being in touch with reality requires clarity on what is possible and realistic in a given situation in life.   In my experience one of the best psychological models to live by is Reality Therapy and Choice Theory developed by Dr. William Glasser. 

Dr. Glasser theory is based the idea that all people are born with specific basic needs that if left unmet, lead to disappointment, disharmony or disturbance. Reality Therapy classifies these five needs in this manner:

1) Power – A sense of winning, or achieving, or a sense of self-worth

2) Love and Belonging – To a family, to a community, or to other loved ones

3) Freedom – To be independent, maintain your own personal space, autonomy

4) Fun – To achieve satisfaction, enjoyment and a sense of pleasure

5) Survival – Basic needs of shelter, survival, food, sexual fulfillment

The fact that everyone is at all times striving to meet these basic needs is at the heart of Reality Therapy and are the root cause of disappointments.

Self-Coaching Challenge:

Examine and reflect on the above needs and rate your perception and feeling about them on a 1-10 scale. 1 need is block or unmet to 10 Fully being met. This week pick one need that is blocked and identify how you can take small steps to meet this need. Good Luck and keep me post on your progress.

Legacy Project: In your 20’s Learn to Play the Game of Life “winning from within”

The Game of Life—“Winning from Within”

“All good men and women must take responsibility to create legacies that will take the next generation to a level we could only imagine”.  Jim Rohn

 In this Legacy Project my goal is to enlighten valued people from where they are now to where they want to go by increasing self-awareness and developing more relationship power. A core tool for the Legacy Project is using the process of self-coaching . Self-coaching will focus on life principles shared by older and wiser folks structured activities, skill development and commitment to positive actions to do what they need to do to create meaning in their lives.  

Mission of Perspective: Dedicated to sharing lessons learned for people to learn from in creating and discovery their own path in life. We are out to change the world one person at a time. 

We all know that at some point we are going to die. So the question becomes what are we going to do with our time here?  What is our purpose for living? How do we make a difference and create meaning in our lives.

 Purpose Focus. 

Purpose helps us understand what is important to do with our life. Knowing your purpose provides a roadmap for living a more meaningful life. Our hectic and fast paced life suddenly begins to make sense to us. We begin to slow down, identify our priorities and stop just doing meaningless stuff to fill our days.

Winning from Within Moments

There are many Winning from Within moments (“WFW”) in our lives that we miss because we are not paying attention, don’t show-up or lack the awareness to focus on the “here and now . To use a sports analogy, it is like stalling with 3 minutes to go in a basketball game to avoid letting the other team score; this sometimes is called “taking air out of the ball”. This is a risky strategy for winning because the team leading losses their momentum, rhythm, focus and energy. The same goes on in football when teams play the so-called   prevent defense. But in life “slowing down” can be benefit you because it gives you time to block emotional outbursts and let’s the rational part of your brain drive more constructive thinking and behavior.

1. Our first step in “starting the game” is to be more observant and aware of what is going on around us in life. Just by stopping to make an observant about what is happening rather than rushing-in provides time to make a more informed decision. This “Stop, Think and Act” structure with process technique provides insight for creating more self-awareness and positive action in our daily lives. Another way to slow down is checking out our thinking with close colleagues and trusted friends who can provide feedback or information to help clarify our problem solving and decision-making process.

Here’s how the game is played. Look around, wherever you happen to be, and see what is really going on…stop, observe, think, reflect and then choose your response. Who needs to be thanked for a kind deed, or a helping hand? For example, while driving, maybe you could let other cars in front of you while driving. Another possibility is to tell your wife or significant other a new reason why he or she is important to you. Or you could buy lunch for a friend for no reason; create an end-of-day celebration because you affirming their importance to the team, get up early to write an e-mail or handwritten note of gratitude to someone. Who was there at your moment of need?

The important idea is to play consciously in life, applying your strengths to any and all situations by giving 110% effort.