I like questions. I don’t mind tough questions especially if I am the one doing the asking. In the midst of preparing to deliver a program on creating impact, the question of personal mission kept popping up.
My promise was to deliver a simple process that people could grasp, participate and apply. Simple is always good—right? It is good but the truth is, simple does not mean easy.
Did he say what I thought he said? He most certainly did. He called it, “a phenomenon.” It is most certainly an annual event. But to call it a phenomenon would be overstating it.
A phenomenon is defined as an unusual, significant, or unaccountable fact or occurrence; a marvel or remarkable occurence. So it is clearly not a phenomenon. You might argue it is significant (it is), but remarkable—unfortunately not.
Starting is easy—it’s finishing that is difficult. You’ve been there. We’ve all been there. One lap, one quarter, one period to go. How you finish is what separates a good legacy from a great one.
When the finish line comes into view it can give rise to a range of emotions—especially if the stakes are high and the important people in our life are counting on us.
Did you know, “Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not coincidence.”
Erma Bombeck called it and added, “Any man who watches three football games in a row should be declared legally dead.” Welcome to Thanksgiving—a day filled with food, football and a hopefully a side of gratitude.
May I have your attention please? Please, can I have your attention for a brief moment? In a world of digital distractions, brief is sometimes not even long enough for someone to read a headline. Today, the ability to get and maintain focus is waning and it is robbing you.
Our inability to focus and concentrate on important relationships and goals is a critical! It may be the primary obstacle to creating and sustaining meaningful personal and professional impact.
What are the five greatest days of your life? If you are a parent—with few exceptions—your list will most certainly include the day you welcomed a child into the world. Welcoming a child into the world is woven together with amazing, magical and scary.
A day engrained in your memory and brought back to life every time you think about the flood of emotions that swept over you the first time you held your son or daughter.
As I walked up, I could see she was fighting back tears. A well of emotion rising up after hearing a message of encouragement. “I can’t remember the last time I felt truly encouraged—thank you,” she said. She wasn’t alone—not today or any day.
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Our chief want in life is to find someone who will make us do what we can.” Life is breathed into the “can” we can do by the right person, with the right word, at the right moment, delivering an essential truth in a loving and gracious way.
Encouragement is a simple word with powerful potential. Encouragement improves relationships and raises performance. Encouragement is the coming along side of someone and instilling in them the courage to act when they are stuck.
Two good friends sit down to have lunch and start talking about their work. One of the men expresses concern that his boss never encourages him and maybe he should look for another job. He asks his friend what he thinks he should do.
The context of a great question can sometimes elicit a simple response. I asked my friend, “What time is it?” My friend quickly looked at his watch and responded with the time of day. I smiled and replied, “Not what is the time of day, but what is your time in life?” Leo Tolstoy said, “There is only one time that is important–now! It is the most important time because it is the only time we have any power over.”
My question was really curiosity about the direction of his hope and ambition. Kyle Idleman in his book Not a Fan tells a story about a young girl who was killed in a car accident. Brittany was only 17 years old when she died. Shortly before the accident, Brittany had opened a checking account. When her father went to the bank to close the account he noticed she had only written one check—Compassion International to sponsor a child.
Words are powerful. What we say and how we say it can make a powerful impact on the people we love and lead—even on the people we may only experience in a passing moment.
Benjamin Zander is the conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and author of The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life. Zander says, “The conductor of an orchestra doesn’t make a sound. He depends, for his power, on his ability to make other people powerful.”