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Posts Tagged ‘wired’

Start Your Career Transition: Step 3 – Word Research

October 17, 2011 1 comment

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In this step, you get to do job REsearch, without job searching.  Job research for the sake of finding words and work activities that sound interesting to you.  This step will help you focus future job search (or job creation) activities on the type of work that most interests you, leverages how you are uniquely wired, and provides engaging challenges.

Online Job Research

  1. Go online, at least two or three times, and look at job postings that look interesting.
  2. IGNORE job qualifications at this stage (remember, this activity is NOT an actual job search).
  3. Capture critical information along the way:
  • search terms that produce interesting job results,
  • job titles that seem exciting and just sound “cool” to you, and
  • job responsibilities that you find within job descriptions that seem exceptionally interesting.

Read more…

A Moment of Clarity – The Power of Self-Knowledge

September 28, 2011 Leave a comment

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Have you ever had the gift of witnessing one of those “ah ha!” moments when a child / teen / youth / young person / youngun’ realizes something about themselves?  The kind of clarity that maybe you wish you found earlier in your life?  The sort of self-knowledge that can have a huge impact on how you work and interact with others in all kinds of useful circumstance?

I witnessed this with my daughter when I shared some “style” information.  She was able to say “that’s exactly what I do!”  The best part of this experience, however, was to see her put this knowledge to use.  To recognize when she was using her back-up style (aka verbal attack, but we call it “going to the dark side”) and stop it in its tracks.  She redirected her energy and melt-down was avoided. 

Momma, so proud!

The first step is awareness, and then you have the foundation to do something, to put this knowledge to good use.

I challenge you to:

  1. know more about your nature tendencies or style,
  2. define how it affects interactions with the people in your live and your work, and
  3. pick the element that seems to get in the way the most and choose one simple method to get around it in the future.  You might find the following STOP Interview (from Marcus Buckingham) to be a helpful way to think through this step:
    • Can you just Stop doing that behavior?
    • Can you Team up with someone, Transfer the activity to someone else, or Transition to something different?
    • Can you Offer up one of your strengths as an alternative way to deal with the current situation?
    • Can you simply Perceive this behavior from the perspective of your strengths?

Know, and be Free!

Embracing Procrastination AND Developing Discipline

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In my quest to better understand how people are uniquely wired so as to better leverage gifts / talents / strengths / type, I learned that chronic procrastination can actually be attributed to certain personality types.  (Ahem … yes, including my own)

 Wow!  It is actually part of how I am wired and that can’t make it wrong, right?  I embrace my procrastination, fully!!!

Yes, there can be benefits to understanding one’s procrastination.  For me, I am EXTREMELY efficient AND effective and even quite creative under the “healthy” tension created towards the end of that procrastination cycle.  I have also come to understand that some behaviors I previously thought were attributed to procrastination in the way I work actually are not.  For example, I cannot just sit down and begin to write or create, I have to learn, think, and talk about it A WHOLE LOT before I’ve formed the idea well enough to begin writing.  Because of the way I mentally process in this way, when I do sit down to write, the ideas are more fully formed and that is part of the reason why I can knock it out so very quickly.

This is just one personal example related to my own unique wiring.  It makes me wonder about others’ and how their unique wiring mixes with procrastination behaviors in different ways.

But what about discipline?  Does a correlation exists between the two?  Do all extreme procrastinators, also consistently lack the ability to develop discipline in all aspects of life?  It can affect home, relationships, health, sleep, spirit, and just about anything else you can think of.

Nothing [is] so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.”
–William James

After searching for resources on the development of discipline, I failed to find anything connecting the two together.

So, the question becomes:

How do procrastinators embrace the creative attributes that lead to procrastination while also developing discipline capabilities to better work towards and achieve goals?

Maybe there’s another way to look at it, another word besides “discipline”.  This reminds me of the process I use when leading teams through the Go Put Your Strengths To Work process by Marcus Buckingham.  After identifying your weaknesses, look at them through the lens of your strengths.  How might you re-frame weaknesses or use your strengths to accomplish the desired outcome as a way to skirt those weaknesses?

In the same way, how might you analyze your procrastination through the lens of your unique strengths?  How might you even leverage your strengths / preferences / type to overcome some of the negative affects of procrastination while still harnessing some of the creative benefits?

Fulfillment and Success Equation

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I’ve found myself describing applying knowledge of self (how we are wired) as:

When people truly understand how they are wired and apply that knowledge, they will be more engaged, fulfilled, productive and successful.

This statement depicts both the benefit to the individual and those they serve (including organizations that they partner with).  The following equation is a simpler way to say this:

Passion + Talent + Persistence = Fulfillment & Success

Where P+T+P is a cycle and where fulfillment = feeling fulfilled &/or fulfilling ones’ purpose.  It looks like this:

In order to present the concept of applying knowledge of self in a way that is more appealing to those not naturally drawn to it, it must be presented in both a simple and logical way.  This equation begins to do just that.

Season’s Change – Time to Reflect and Plan

September 22, 2010 Leave a comment

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Today is the first day of Fall.   It is a new beginning, a changing of the season, and a perfect time to cozy up in the cool evening air and look ahead.  Have you ever turned around and realized that another season (or worse, YEAR) has passed and you haven’t really made the progress you thought you would? Changing of seasons is one of nature’s reminders to reflect on progress during the previous season and make plans for the next.

Following are some reflection questions I’m considering today as I embrace this opportunity to reflect on summer and plan for fall:

  1. What did I accomplish last season?
    • How do these successes contribute to my long-term goals / plans?
  2. What did I want to do, but didn’t?
  3. What behavior might I need to examine and choose a different behavior for the fall?
    • What one or two things can I do in the next week to begin this new behavior?
  4. What did the summer reveal or validate about how I am wired?
    • How does this knowledge inform my plans for work and life?
    • What one or two things can I do in the next week to apply this knowledge?
  5. Pause to visualize long term goals / plan – envision what it looks like to accomplish each one.
  6. What do I need to add to or change about my long-term goals? (Make sure they are written down.) 
  7. What 1, 2, or 3 things can I do in the fall to make progress towards the vision / each goal?
    • Reality check – Is it realistic that I can do these things?  If not, how can I change them to be realistic or what can I change to remove barriers?
  8. Review everything – What two or three things am I going to do in the next week to kick start this season?

Colors change, revealing true inner beauty.

Evening air chills, a forthright reminder.

Nature prepares, with purpose and urgency.

Time charges forward …

… are you ready?

A Tomato Just Wants to Be a Tomato

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I read a book about the Amish way of life earlier this year and it’s had me thinking about the simple way lately.  I’ve never but much of a gardener nor had any thumb remotely close to any shade of green, but this simple way thinking has ignited a longing to grow things.  There’s something about the time, dedication, and knowledge required to successfully grow things, especially in the dry mountains at 8,000 ft in elevation.  There’s an analogy to life and especially to cultivating growth in those for which we care – be it our children, pets, students, or others who come our way.

So, I ventured to grow things this year including tomatoes, jalapeno, and several herbs.  I’m happy to report that all have turned out to be successful (well, except for the still-unhappy-cilantro).  The thing is, it didn’t start out this way.  Several of the plants were unhappy and I had to adjust various elements like sun, water, planting logistics, and even proximity to other plants.  For example, the jalapeno looked like a dead twig sticking out of the dirt, but I kept adjusting, gave it some time (and love), and now he’s happily producing with at least 15 soon-to-be peppers on board!

While chatting about gardening with my neighbor this morning, she tells me about an Old Wives Tale that you have to walk on the radish plants if you want the radishes to grow to a decent size.  We didn’t know that this is what they needed in order to reach their full potential, but it really works.  It’s just like people.  Not every person is alike.  Each is unique and needs to be treated uniquely in order to reach their full potential.  There are patterns that we can discover that will help us to better understand how to help, how to cultivate those in our care.  Just like there are varieties of tomatoes – once we learn about that pattern, it will help us to cultivate any tomato plant, but each varietal may require unique tweaking.

A tomato is destined to be a tomato and it will become more like itself, it will fulfill its destiny, it will achieve its personal legend (to borrow from The Alchemist) if it has the right support and environment in which to thrive.  It just wants to be a tomato!

Are You Wired To Be An Entrepreneur?

May 27, 2010 2 comments

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We’ve all heard “get rich quick” stories of some entrepreneurs and many people have a skewed perspective of what it really means to serve in this capacity.  Can you wear the “Entrepreneur” label?  What type of person makes for a good entrepreneur?  Are there certain aspects of how successful entrepreneurs are wired that could provide insight and provide guidance to potential entrepreneurs?  Following is just a start – it merely scratches the surface:

  • Vision – provides a line of sight for what it is you want to create – you may be capable of tweaking, adjusting, adding to that vision via the influence of others, but you have a clear line of sight.
  • Passion – you must have passion for the product or service that you wish to produce or provide.
  • Persistence – you have to do the work that it takes to move the idea forward past the roadblocks, “no’s”, and struggles.
  • Talent – you must have an understanding of your fundamental talents – what are you good at and what are you not?  This will help you know what you can do and when to recruit some help.

In a Harvard Business Review blog post, Seth Kravitz discusses this topic and presents questions to help determine if you really are ready to be an entrepreneur.  He also talks about the importance for a budding entrepreneur to be able to handle considerable stress – do you have good practices already in place as habits in your life today?  Thanks for the following thought-provoking reality check questions, Seth!

  1. am willing to lose everything.
  2. I embrace failure.
  3. I am always willing to do tedious work.
  4. I can handle watching my dreams fall apart.
  5. Even if I am puking my guts out with the flu and my mother passed away last week, there is nothing that will keep me from being ready to work.
  6. My relationship/marriage is so strong, nothing work-related could ever damage it.
  7. My family doesn’t need an income.
  8. This is a connected world and I don’t need alone time. I want to be reachable 24/7 by my employees, customers, and business partners.
  9. I like instability and I live for uncertainty.
  10. I don’t need a vacation for years at a time.
  11. I accept that not everyone likes my ideas and that it’s quite likely that many of my ideas are garbage.
  12. If I go into business with friends or family, I am okay with losing that relationship forever if things end badly.
  13. I don’t have existing anxiety issues and I handle stress with ease.
  14. I am willing to fire or lay off anyone no matter what — how good of a friend they are, if they are my own sibling, if they just had a baby, if they have worked with me for 20 years, if their spouse also just lost their job, if I know they might end up homeless, if they have cancer but no outside medical insurance, or any other horrible scenario millions of bosses and HR people have faced countless times.
  15. I am okay with being socially cut–off and walking away from my friends when work beckons.
  16. I love naysayers and I won’t explode or give up when a family member, friend, customer, business associate, partner, or anyone for that matter tells me my idea, product, or service is a terrible idea, a waste of time, will never work, or that I must be a moron.
  17. I accept the fact that I can do everything right, can work 70 hours a week for years, can hire all the right people, can arrange amazing business deals, and still lose everything in a flash because of something out of my control.
  18. I accept that I may hire people that are much better at my job than I am and I will get out of their way.
  19. I realize and accept that I am wrong ten times more than I am right.
  20. I am willing to walk away if it doesn’t work out.