Monday is a big day. It’s a day of significant personal importance—my 12,775th wedding anniversary. For those of you who count in years that would be 35 years. There is something of immense importance in measuring the marriage race in days?
Leading up to our wedding, we both had just turned 23 and were fresh out of college. I was living in Southern California and Kristi was still living in our home state of Washington. We would get married on June 26, drive to California and launch into this race of marriage.
It took me awhile to understand being a father is easy but becoming a great dad is difficult. You don’t need a degree or license to become a father. Fatherhood rarely begins as you expect it to or unfolds as you plan. It is indiscriminate in its ability to reveal and demonstrate how ill equipped you are to run this race.
Fatherhood is a strange paradox—testing your resolve and commitment like few things can and providing joy like nothing else can. It may be the essence of clinging to the obligation and responsibility of being a father long enough to understand how becoming a dad creates a lasting and rippling impact on our kids.
Sometimes I get distracted and discouraged. Maybe you do to—most of us do. Call it intellectual drifting where we lose sight of where and how we intend to create and sustain meaningful impact with the people we love and teams we lead.
Summer is the drifting season. The “lazy days of summer” invite us to take it easy. Planning for relaxation to reenergize is vital to sustained impact and is much different from intellectual drifting. Drifting is losing touch with our most important roles.
I have a birthday on Sunday! I am not sure the exclamation point reflects excitement or shock. As a kid, who doesn’t anxiously anticipate their birthday? It seemed like every New Year of age opened the door to new opportunities and privileges.
Now, I must admit, there is a bit of awe and wonder about how quickly I arrived here. I like to say that I know our lives do not unfold as we plan or wish because if they did I would have a lot more hair. I looked in the mirror this morning and observed what little hair I have left needs a trim.
Would you be interested in meeting and learning from a world-class coach? Just imagine having someone come along side of you who could help you improve and refine your skills and raise your performance?
The fastest path to improvement is to use a coach. So to say the least, I was intrigued when a friend offered to introduce me to Mike Wilson. Mike is one of the top golf instructors in the world and keenly focused on helping good players become elite players.
Do you want the good news or the bad news? The truth in the question is we don’t like to deliver bad news so we try to soften its impact. Especially if we anticipate the news is not going to be well received.
Not all feedback is created equal. I had a boss once who spoke frequently of the need to have “courageous conversations” with people. It takes courage to coach people towards improvement.
Less then 20% of Americans receive the necessary level of encouragement necessary to raise their performance.
Why do so many leaders, teachers, coaches and parents fail to use a tool that is readily available to them every day? Equally important is wondering why so called “soft skills” like encouragement are so undervalued and appreciated.
What is going on! Why are people who’s job it is to serve behaving so poorly? But maybe the more important question is why are the leaders of these company’s seemingly so surprised.
The answer is simple—four qualities that engender people’s loyalty, commitment and effort. And here in lies the challenge, simple is not easy. Simple can be painstakingly hard and it can also reveal something in ourselves that we would never want to admit.
Do you have a favorite four-letter word? Ask a group of people this question and I can guarantee two responses—whispers and laughter. In either case, I immediately know they are not thinking of the same four-letter word I am thinking about.
I can’t say for sure we were thinking of different words because I did not ask for volunteers. Their reaction told me everything I needed to know—we had work to do.
Every time I ask the question the response is usually the same. If I ask a group there may be a few outliers but for the most part they chime out the same response in harmonic unison.
Would you prefer more independence or more accountability?