When You Can’t Catch A Break

When you can’t answer an important email because your phone is ringing off the hook.

When you tried to deliver an important presentation but your team didn’t deliver the material.

When your wife is upset with you for staying back to work on a proposal.

When you left your stakeholders disgruntled and disenchanted when you made that ill informed decision.

When you won the contract but you terminally destroyed the relationship with your longest serving client.

When you settled on a property and you signed away to thirty five years of mortgage slavery.

When you watch your childhood best friend get married because you failed to tell her that you loved her for eighteen years.

We have all experienced one of the above stories and have felt the tremendous pain and inner conflict that arises within ourselves. And, all too often than not, we fail to pinpoint the sole reason why we are put into these situations.

Is it a test?

Is it for a greater purpose?

Is it part of becoming the person the world aspires for us to be?

Ultimately, we are the problem. We fail to prioritise our daily tasks. We fail to engage our stakeholders correctly. We fail to express our feelings at the risk of offending those around us. We fail to set our goals correctly. We fail to be authentic. We fail to tell our soul mates that we love them. We fail to be congruent. We fail to take risks. We fail to be the hunter and gatherer that is so embedded within our genetic makeup. In fact, we fail to recognise that we are the problem.

The upside is that we often fail to recognise that we are the solution. We are the problem and that we are the solution.

So next time you are confronted by conflict, miscommunication, inner feelings of concern, love, hate and anger; what are you going to do?

Are you going to act immediately?

Are you going to step back and evaluate the situation?

Are you going to think of how this impacts your greater goals or purpose?

Or, are you going to continue on maintaining your personal status quo and experience another similar event of disenchantment once again?

Are you going to be the problem? Or are you going to be the solution?

Be remarkable. Be congruent. Embrace it.

The Ten Minutes That Changed Everything

Let’s face it, we are all creatures of habit but that doesn’t necessarily mean that all our habits are good or nourishing for us. As you read this article right now, what has brought you here today is the sum of all your previous experiences and decisions.

As a Project Manager, I’m always looking for the latest ‘life hack’ to optimise my daily performance; whether that be in my technical, physical or personal life. This ever yearning desire for excellence has led me to reading over fifty books a year across Project Management, Leadership, Personal Development, Philosophy, Finance, Communications, Entrepreneurship and Health. With the relentless amount of content I cover, I stumble upon so much information which enables me to continuously sharpen my saw. However, only recently I stumbled upon something which has brought immense impact in my life and I’ve only been practicing this for two weeks.

Do you wish to be more productive at work?

Do you wish to lead with heart and courage?

Do you wish to have impact?

I stumbled upon a short clip by Personal Development leader, Bob Proctor, which laid out a short yet powerful routine to begin your day. I was sceptical at first, (and I mean very sceptical), but the results of the last two weeks have been astounding…

In fact, I don’t even know if I’m the same man I use to be. My house and office have never been cleaner, my productivity has skyrocketed, my relationships and ability to establish rapport with stakeholders has increased, and the outcomes in both my career and personal life have significantly improved.

So if this sounds like something you desire in your life right now, perhaps you best give the following routine a try immediately after you rise in the morning.

STEP 1: WRITE DOWN TEN THINGS THAT YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR
When you write down and consciously acknowledge what you are grateful for, your mind unconsciously shifts and you start to see how lucky you are. And, even better, how much opportunity there is in this big wide world. Start off writing about the small things like having toes, fingers, eyes that can read the article and maybe even work your way up to having electricity or running water.

STEP 2: WRITE DOWN THREE PEOPLE’S NAMES THAT YOU WILL SEND LOVE TO
Here’s the tricky and uncomfortable part. You need to write down three people’s names which you either hate, dislike, don’t get along with or feel that they have short changed you in the past. This could be your ex-wife, a failed business partner, a bully from high school or even a guy that you just never got along with. It can be everybody, but you are more likely than not to gravitate to usual suspects.

STEP 3: CLOSE YOUR EYES, SIT UP STRAIGHT, BREATHE DEEPLY FOR FIVE MINUTES
What you now need to do is close your eyes and relax. Start breathing deeply and whilst you do that, consciously run an internal dialogue in your mind. The dialogue must be directed to the person’s that you are sending love to and this is critical. Think as if they were in the room. How would you express forgiveness to them? In what way would you thank them? Why do you want the best for them in their future endeavours?

Once you’ve run through this internal dialogue in your mind for the three people, you need to consciously focus on the stillness and peace. With practice, you can remove yourself completely from the business of the world. Once you feel as if you’re ready, open your eyes. Notice a difference?

STEP 4: WRITE DOWN YOUR TO-DO LIST
With this new found clarity, you will know exactly what you need to do in your day. Write down every single detail in your To-Do List including who you’re meeting with, where are you having lunch, what exercise you’re doing, what projects and tasks are being worked on etc.

Either you run the day or the day runs you – Jim Rohn
As you go throughout your day and complete all your items, cross them out or tick them off. Not only will you have done the tasks you want to have done, you’ll develop a mindset of productivity and optimism which is infectious to all those that are graced with your presence.

Do you want to feel closer to your team? Do you want to get the best outcomes in your personal life? Do you want to feel life again? Nothing is stopping you. The power of being mindful every single day is tremendously undervalued by modern society, and it’s only now that the largest organisations are implementing such programs for their senior leaders.

If you have a morning routine which powers you through your day, I’d love to hear from you. I encourage to give this a try, and when you do, please share this amongst your Linkedin Network and Friends. Let’s work on being the best version of ourselves every single day.

Be mindful. Be congruent. Embrace it.

How Well Do You Know Your Team?

What are your team members first and last names?

Do you know where they live?

Do you know when their birthdays are?

Do you know their childrens’ names?

Do you know what their favourite holiday spot is? And, more importantly, why?

Do you know their wives, husbands, partners or are they using tinder?

What motivates them to go to work?

What motivates them to deliver beyond expectation?

Do they really want to delight your customers or are they simply acting as part of a procedural system?

What other jobs are they going for?

What other opportunities are there for them within your organisation?

What can you do to keep them?

Are they on the bus or are they off the bus?

Are they here to be remarkable or are they here for survival?

In the fast paced world that we live in, the face to face relationship whether it be your client, your team member or your stakeholders on your project matters more than ever before. The technology we created to keep us more connected has subtly reduced the emphasis of our presence. Without our inner ability to utilise our emotional intelligence, we struggle to develop genuine rapport with whoever we grace in our working lives. We begin to judge people solely on tasks delivered and emails answered and fail to recognise the importance of being human.

Work is essential, it provides us with the ability to make a living. However, what is life without others to share it with?

Before you hit enter on your next email, maybe pick up the phone and call your teammate. Ask him how his weekend was. Ask him how he is feeling. Ask her what her kids are up to at school and what the kids are learning. Build that relationship, understand their beliefs and values and I’m entirely sure your outcomes will dramatically improve.

Be congruent. Be remarkable. Embrace it.

Why Are We Tiptoeing?

Here’s an all too common setting that has really seemed to baffle me very recently. Now, I know we are not really meant to talk about our personal lives on LinkedIn. However, I know what I am about to discuss is relatable with all aspects of your personal, professional and spiritual life.

Like many young people, I enjoy letting my hair down most Friday nights. Some people go to nightclubs, others watch TV and some go to the opera. I particularly like to go to my favourite bar on the Sunshine Coast in Maroochydore, where we are blessed with the presence of some of the finest blues and jazz musicians Queensland has to offer. This is where the story starts…

I decided to meet an associate at the bar at approximately 8:30 PM to catch up over the weeks events. A lot had happened that week and we were looking forward to sharing all the thrilling stories that had been created that week (entrepreneurship is full of them). When I saw him at the bar, I shouted, screamed and smiled to see the friend. We embraced, hi-fived and shared drink after drink and had a brilliant time. However, many different stories were panning out that evening in our surrounding environment…

There was a group of six beautiful women with glowing skin, athletic figures and brilliant smiles all wearing wonderful black dresses. I wondered, with such elegance and presence, how any of these women couldn’t have whatever they wanted? With looks like theirs and many eligible bachelors in the vicinity, that sole feeling of being desired had to be satisfied. However, upon closer inspection, I couldn’t be further from the truth.

These beautiful women were sat at a table. Slouched. Motionless. Disappointed. In fact, my associate and I even considered this to be a chore for the entire group. We then started trying to create hypothetical scenarios for how it all went down. Did one person want to come here for a quiet drink? What happened in the dominant member’s day? From the looks of things, they just didn’t want to be there. This thought, in fact, got me wondering.

How often are we forced into complying?

Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean with rules and regulations. What I am more trying to allude to, in fact, are the societal norms which we often are told to uphold. But, is that best practice for our sanity?

Why should we be complying?

How should we be acting?

What should we be doing?

Unfortunately, we all (unless we are trained to adapt) are victims of what I call the “Tiptoe” syndrome. We take “NO” for an answer when our hearts are screaming for a “YES”. We say yes to social occasions merely to make an appearance instead of saying no when we can make a tremendous impact in our businesses, family and personal lives. We avoid danger and conflict in a mere effort to tiptoe quietly to the grave. Whilst we remove the risks and dangers from our lives, we also remove potential excitement and more importantly, the rewards.

See, we don’t just have radical innovation thrust upon society by playing it safe. We don’t just have flight, cars, iPhones, WiFi and democracy from playing it safe. We, the human race, took tremendous risks and acted congruently from the heart to get the freedoms, technologies, wealth and civil liberties that we have today. Playing it safe never got society anywhere.

So what have you been putting off?

Have you always wanted to launch your startup? And you are waiting for the right moment? Will that moment ever come? Are you waiting for it to be safe?

Have you been waiting for the perfect opportunity to quit the job you hate so you can jump across to a new company for another job which you will only hate less than your old one?

Are you waiting for it to be safe?

Remember….

‘Either you run the day or the day runs you’ Jim Rohn

So when you are faced with a compliance situation, gathering or meeting; I want you to ask yourself these three questions:

1. Do I need to be here?

2. Does it feel right?

3. How else could I be spending my time and why would that benefit me?

So next time you head to the bar with your work colleagues, have a little ponder…

Are you there to uphold the societal norm?

Do you really want to be there?

Are these people who are going to reciprocate and elevate you as a person or are there to help them?

I was there with my associate because we know that the abundance of life is within us. It didn’t matter where we are, we are going to have a tremendous time. Shall I even mention, living to our full potential?

Most importantly, we wanted to be there. We were stomping, dancing, laughing and smiling. We certainly weren’t tiptoeing.

So, where do you stand?

Are you going to do something remarkable?

Are you going to challenge the way we do things?

Are you going to have an impact and leave legacy upon planet earth?

Or, alternatively….

Are you going to tiptoe?