Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Gradual Adaption by Ron White

The older I get the more I notice that my metabolism seems to be moving slower than most glaciers. I was watching a turtle the other day make its way across the grass and I could have sworn that I heard my metabolism say, “Hey turtle, slow down…what is your hurry?”

It has become a monumental struggle to maintain the weight that I prefer. Other than eating the right foods, I have become a runner. That is right—a runner. It is the last thing I thought you would ever hear me say. A few years ago, it would have been more likely that I join a Polish circus as a fire juggler. Yet, here I am, a runner.

A concept that running has taught me is the one of “gradual adaptation.” When I started running, one and a half miles seemed unfathomable. As I lumbered around the track that first jog, it felt as if my eyes were rolling back in my head. I could feel my lunch making its way to resurface and my lungs gasped to grab all the oxygen in my time zone.

Now, as I glide past the 1.5-mile mark, I haven’t even gotten warmed up. What made the change? Gradual adaptation.

A fellow runner suggested that I run for 20 minutes at a slow pace. He convinced me that it was the duration and not the intensity that was important. I soon reported back to him that I was able to run 20 minutes with great ease at 6.3 mph. “Super!” he replied. “Next time you run, run for 25 minutes.”

In my mind, he might as well have told me to sprout wings and fly. Yet, I nodded my head and told him I would give it a try. To my amazement, the extra five minutes came easy. Within a few weeks, I was running 30 minutes, then 35, then 40, then 45 and then 60 consecutive minutes!

If I had started at 60 minutes, I would have most likely been wheeled to the hospital afterward and never run again. Instead, I chose the option of gradual adaptation.

Whether your goal is running, building a business or learning a new skill, the concept of gradual adaptation is one that you must implement to be successful.

Don’t attempt to change the world in a day. Brian Buffini says that most people overestimate what they can accomplish in a year (this is because they don’t practice gradual adaptation) and underestimate what they can accomplish in a decade.

How to implement gradual adaptation:

  • Decide what your ultimate goal is
  • Understand this will also be a lesson in patience and do not rush the end result
  • Establish stages or levels of the larger goal
  • Focus on the next stage, not the end result
  • Remind yourself of the end result to maintain excitement and passion while still focusing on the next stage
  • Measure your progress with a chart

Realize that your results in any endeavor will be slow at first, but as you gain momentum the results expand geometrically. This is why most overestimate their accomplishments for a year and underestimate the possible accomplishments of a decade.

This six-step process will work if you are building a business, a workout routine or learning a new skill. Remember that no one ever ran a marathon the first time out of the blocks and neither will you.

Practice gradual adaptation.

—Ron White

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Teamwork Principles from the Fight Against PovertyBy John C. Maxwell

While attending a convention in Mexico City, Michaela Walsh was disturbed by the stark reality of economic disadvantage faced by women in many parts of the world. Globally, women worked just as much as men, but earned only 10% of worldwide income, and held less than 1% of the world's property. Walsh realized that most of the women would continue to live in a cycle of poverty unless someone took initiative to team up with them to open opportunities for financial betterment.

Stirred into action, Walsh set about to create a development bank to offer basic financial services to low-income women. Recognizing she lacked the means to launch an institution of her own, Walsh instead focused on connecting women to the existing financial systems in their communities. A triumph of teamwork, Walsh's vision became Women's World Banking (WWB), a global network of organizations dedicated to giving a voice and opportunities to female entrepreneurs living in poverty.

Michaela Walsh exemplifies team leadership. She saw a problem bigger than her resources, envisioned an opportunity to do something about it, and realized her only hope for success was to form a team. Her influence in launching Women's World Banking illustrates the responsibilities of a responsible team leader.

Responsibility #1
Leaders Seek Out and Remove Barriers to Make the Team's Job Easier.

The whole premise of WWB involves removing the barriers that exclude women from economic opportunity. The primary obstacle for aspiring female entrepreneurs in poor nations is an absence of startup funds. They have no bank accounts, scarce collateral, and can find no one willing to make them a loan.

The main strategy of Women's World Banking has been microfinance, an effort to counteract poverty by lending capital to the underprivileged. To date, WWB has made loans to 20 million clients totaling $4.3 billion. Currently, the organization is initiating partnerships with the world's major banks to infuse even more capital to cash-strapped entrepreneurs in desperate need of funding to start small businesses.

Responsibility #2
Leaders Give People the Freedom to Learn, Grow, and Deliver.

The majority of people in poverty aren't destitute because they lack talent. They simply never had a chance. They were born as slaves to indigence and given no opportunity to escape.

Through its microfinance initiatives, WWB frees hard-working, resourceful, and creative women to climb out of poverty. Small loans, sometimes as little as $50 or $60, allow a poor woman to purchase a sewing machine, tools, or livestock. Even these meager assets, when coupled with determination and a sense of purpose, can be enough to give a woman and her family a sound financial footing.

Responsibility #3
Leaders Set Crystal Clear Expectations

Every woman receiving WWB financing is clearly informed that by accepting the loan she is now expected to be a model for other woman in her community. Terms of the loan and its repayments are explicit. Expectations for return on investment are apparent to both the lender and the borrower.

Responsibility #4
Leaders Hold People Accountable for Performance.

Women's World Banking facilitates the personal connection between borrower and lender to encourage accountability. While loan recipients may not feel an urgent need to repay money from an impersonal lender like the government, they feel terrible about failing to pay back a friend. The relational aspect facilitated within WWB's financing leads to a tremendously low percentage of defaults.

Responsibility #5
Leaders Foster a Culture of Inclusion by Hiring People That Are Different Than They Are

By herself, Michaela Walsh would never be able to learn the language, customs, and local financial systems in order to help female entrepreneurs in Kenya, Bangladesh, or Mongolia. However, by operating with a spirit of partnership, she doesn't have to be an expert on every nation. Her vision for Women's World Banking has attracted grassroots organizations in these countries. By welcoming like-minded teammates with varying backgrounds and cultures, Walsh has expanded the influence of WWB into 28 countries.


Five Responsibilities of Good Team Leaders

1) Seek Out and Removes Barriers to Make the Team's Job Easier
2) Give The Team Freedom to Grow, Learn, and Deliver
3) Set Crystal Clear Expectations
4) Hold People Accountable for Performance
5) Foster a Culture of Inclusion by Hiring People That Are Different Than They Are.


"About Us." Women's World Banking. Home Page. 2009. 10 Oct 2009.

Hargrave, Connie. "Women's World Banking-A Value System of Self-Determination, Interview with Michaela Walsh." Share International online. Feb 1994. 10 Oct 2009. <>


John C. Maxwell is an internationally respected leadership expert, speaker, and author who has sold more than 18 million books. Dr. Maxwell is the founder of EQUIP, a non-profit organization that has trained more than 5 million leaders in 126 countries worldwide. Each year he speaks to the leaders of diverse organizations, such as Fortune 500 companies, foreign governments, the National Football League, the United States Military Academy at West Point, and the United Nations. A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Business Week best-selling author, Maxwell has written three books that have sold more than a million copies: The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, Developing the Leader Within You, and The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader. His blog can be read at

Monday, October 26, 2009

Million Dollar Thinking Habits - By Stephanie Frank

What is a million dollar thinker, anyway?

Million dollar thinkers think about things like money and making decisions in a different way from the average person, using both the conscious and the subconscious mind.

As an example: suppose you were $10,000 in debt. The average person would focus on the debt, how to pay it, how to get out of it. They may take on a second job to pay the debt. The focus, no matter what, would be on the debt.

A million dollar thinker, on the other hand, would take that same situation and look at it 180 degrees differently. The million dollar thinker would look at the $10,000 debt, and immediately come up with a plan to earn $20,000. Focusing on solving a problem and strategizing how to make more money is infinitely more interesting, thought provoking and ultimately more prosperous than focusing on the negativity of debt.

Right now, make a choice to understand how your mind and thoughts work. The exploration of the subconscious mind and belief systems that keep us from realizing our biggest dreams is a fascinating study -- and one that is well worth the time and effort to anyone who wants to be successful.

First, take a look at your belief systems -- you know, the ones that everybody talks about but never really digs into? Do you have thoughts like...

"I'm not good enough"

"Money doesn't grow on trees"

"There's not enough to go around."

These are beliefs that infiltrate the conscious mind; ones that people hold onto very tightly, unaware of the damage that they do. Of course, none of those self defeating thoughts is true but they feel very real when you're thinking them.

It's important to learn more about the mind and how these beliefs work -- especially, how the mind can create exactly the circumstances or situations we are thinking about. Even the bad ones. This is powerful stuff.

The subconscious mind is a subset of our entire brain system. There are really three types of processing controls in the brain. First is the unconscious mind. It controls things like breathing. Next is the conscious mind. It is the part of the brain you are using to process the words on this page, to think thoughts, meditate, create and sort information. It is the part of your brain that gets very busy, congested and filled with information and random bits of thinking, songs and entire paragraphs of text. It is that little monster or angel on your shoulder that tells you great things or hurtful things about yourself.

Last is the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind is kind of like a factory, processing the thoughts that your conscious mind gives it. It has no control or discerning capabilities to determine whether a thought is productive and serves you well, or tears you down and makes you cry. Either way, it just goes about its business, carrying out the thoughts you send to it.

If you can, picture the subconscious mind like a bunch of little workers, running around to make sure your thoughts are carried out. When you say to yourself "This is hard work," then the subconscious goes to work, making sure your thoughts are carried out and the result is "This is hard." The subconscious mind has no line between good and bad, it simply works to the logical conclusion, which is the ability to make your thoughts come to fruition.

The subconscious mind does not understand things like "can't," and it is unable to comprehend the difference between what you want and don't want. Like a picture in your mind, it only sees the end result, and goes about achieving that end result. The subconscious mind has a lot to do with what actually shows up in your life, based on the pictures, words and language you use to describe what you want.

The idea is to break negative subconscious beliefs. There is a process to enable you to do exactly that. Here it is:

First, think. What beliefs are holding you back? Do you feel not worthy of success? Not smart enough? Not lucky enough? What originally led you to believe the thought(s) that is/are holding you back?

Say you grew up in a family where money was tight. You grew up to believe that the deck is stacked against you. That, no matter how hard you work, the Universe is predisposed to keeping you in a state of lack. And so your work habits keep you sabotaging yourself -- a way for your subconscious mind to stop you from being successful, and therefore disloyal to your family, who never achieved any great measure of success.

Now, close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths and get very comfortable. Imagine being in a very beautiful place, a safe place -- somewhere where you feel completely at ease and relaxed.

Now, bring your parents into your mind's eye picture, and have them sit down with you. When you've done that, say these words. "Folks, I have an opportunity to be successful beyond my wildest dreams. I'm holding myself back out of loyalty to you and I don't want to do that anymore. I am choosing to be very successful in my personal, professional and financial life. I love you very much and respect everything that you are, and I want you to support me in this choice."

In your mind's eye, see your parents smiling, and speaking words of comfort and encouragement, such as -- "Darling, don't you dare follow in our footsteps. We want you to have anything you dream of. We love you too, and support you in your decisions."

Now, don't you suddenly feel lighter, freer? Open your eyes slowly. Know that you can use this new tool any time you feel concern for your well-being.

Beliefs such as "I'm not good enough" that can haunt your conscious mind, need close scrutiny. Believing the "I'm not good enough" part can be easy, but where does it come from? Somebody gave you the belief!

Once you recognize that this was someone else's belief and not your own (and not necessarily true!), you can begin to let go of it. Using the tool you were given above, have a meditation session with yourself to remove the mental file that holds the "I can do better" belief. Replace it with a new file in your mind called, "I do things well the first time." What a difference it can make in your thinking.

Then continue, taking a close look at many of the self defeating beliefs you've held, eliminating them one by one from your life, your vocabulary and your conscious thought. Once you bring your beliefs to the surface and determine the source, letting go of them is the next step to help you evolve as the successful person you want to be.

** To comment on this article or to read comments about this article, go here.

About the Author:

Stephanie Frank, Founder and President of SuccessIQ University, is the best selling author of "The Accidental Millionaire."

Visit the newly updated web site with content specializing in peak performance, productivity, and leadership coaching and education

Book Stephanie to speak or read what she has to say about achieving goals, leadership, peak performance, personal empowerment, persuasion and influence, productivity, creating systems, and time mastery on her blog web site.

Radical Self-Honesty (and Unconscious Commitments) - By Paul Dalton

Have you ever been really frustrated with yourself for not following through on a task or activity that you know would have given you great rewards?

For example:

* Not filling out the job application even though you were really keen on moving forward in your career.
* Falling off the healthy eating plan even though you already felt uncomfortable with your level of wellbeing.
* Treating yourself to a little luxury item after you vowed to pay off maxed-out credit cards first.
* Saying you'd make more of an effort in your relationship and then spending more time in front of the TV.

I'm willing to stick my neck out and say that everyone has a little thing or area of life where their own actions stop them from getting what they really want.

The key to reversing this kind of self sabotage is to take a good look at yourself and to be completely honest about what is really going on in your head. Although we like to think that our desires are driven by what we consciously choose, there is a far more powerful force at play in the deepest recesses of your unconscious mind.

Take the guy who says he wants to move his business up to the next level. He may have all kinds of ideas and visions for where he'd like the business to go; he might even write down a few lofty goals and do some research on the kind of resources he might need. BUT, if his unconscious mind, for whatever reason, is not ready to play ball, he will inevitably seek out and find all the excuses as to why progress cannot be made right now: It's not the right time; the market is not there; he's too busy; he's too tired; there's no support; his wife wouldn't like it... And the sad thing is that probably the only place where any of these excuses are actually true is in the story he's making up in his head.

He will only be able to stop obstructing himself when he is willing to admit that he is holding onto an unconscious commitment to keep his business exactly where it is right now.

Initially it can be a very uncomfortable thing to acknowledge that you may be unconsciously committed to avoiding the very thing you say you want. Some people start out by strenuously resisting this notion. The purpose of taking a radically honest stance is not to beat yourself up about not doing the best you can, but it's to uncover the mental blocks that are getting in the way of your success.

The really cute thing about the unconscious mind is that, despite its infinite wisdom, it really isn't very good at distinguishing between a real threat to our physical being and an imagined threat to our imagined being, or self-image -- otherwise known as the ego.

When you are about to embark on an exciting but uncertain journey the ego has no assurances that it will survive unscathed. "What if I fail? What will other people think? What if they disapprove? What if I can't handle the pressure of success?"

Your subconscious is an extremely powerful force in your life and drives the majority of your behavior. But it craves familiarity! It likes your self image just the way it is and, left to its own devices, will organize your thoughts and actions to keep it that way. If you want to move past this you have to become aware of what's really going on inside and consciously decide to override this well intentioned protection system with deliberate thoughts and actions that are congruent with your desired outcome.

Anyone can overcome their unconscious commitments and unblock the flow of success in their life, but it takes two things: Radical self-honesty that the only obstacle you are facing is yourself, and a genuine willingness to be consciously committed to turning the situation around.

I encourage you to think about your own life and the areas where you may have unconscious commitments that stop you achieving the results you want. Here are some steps to overcome them (it's important that you let go of any self-judgment as you do this).

1. Identify the non-desirable recurring issues in your life. What do you find yourself consistently complaining about, either verbally to others or silently to yourself? Have you been blaming something or someone for holding you back?

Example: You've been fed up for ages that you are working so hard in your job that it leaves you too little energy to go to the gym.

Now, as if you knew that this is just an excuse, finish off the following sentence with the real unconscious truth.

"I am committed to..."


* "I am committed to blaming everything else for my own lack of action"
* "I am committed to finding excuses not to exercise"
* "I am committed to convincing myself I am too tired when that's not actually true"
* "I am committed to presenting myself as a victim"

2. Say the unconscious commitment out loud and notice the emotional effect it creates in you. If it feels uncomfortable there's a good chance you're on the money!

3. The next step is to repeat the statement out loud over and over, but each time vary the way that you say it. Say it slowly then really quickly. Use a high pitched voice and then a deep low voice. Say it in a sexy voice and then in the style of your favorite cartoon character.

Carry on doing this for a little while and then check back in with your feelings to see how the statement affects you now. This process is very good at ‘de-sensitizing' the unconscious commitment by removing its emotional charge. When you can say the statement without any negative sensations, move on.

4. Identify the positive intention your unconscious had in giving you this commitment. Ask yourself, "What are all the positive ways in which this unconscious commitment has served me?" And with whatever comes up, send your deep gratitude and love to your unconscious for everything it has been trying to do you for doing.

Example: By making me frustrated, it was trying to get me to have a better work / life balance.

5. Create a conscious commitment to override the unconscious one

* I am committed to taking the best care of myself
* I am committed to making health and happiness the most important part of my life
* I am committed to finding creative ways to exercise even when I'm busy
* I am committed to being 100% responsible for myself

Repeat the new commitment out loud over and over until it feels natural and a part of you. Do things to remind yourself of it, like putting post-its around your desk, your home or in your car.

When you catch yourself revisiting that old unconscious commitment, which you inevitably will from time to time, just bring yourself gently back by affirming your new commitment until you feel it in your body.

** To comment on this article or to read comments about this article, go here.

About the Author:

Paul Dalton is a Hypnotherapist and Personal Development Coach / Trainer with bags of experience in helping people change their lives for the better, combining skills from: hypnosis, neuro-linguistic programming, life coaching, leadership effectiveness, metaphysics, motivation techniques, and more.

Paul is also the proud creator of - a Personal Development resource website for everyone interested in the fields of human potential, self-improvement and positive living.

Visit Life Happens today for:

*** FREE "Deep Daily Relaxation" Hypnotherapy MP3 (22 mins) *** FREE Personal Development Podcast: Life Happens LIVE *** FREE "5 Steps to a More Fulfilling Life" E-Course *** FREE Articles and Daily Coaching Blog *** FREE Life Happens Café: Personal Development Forum ***.

It Is Up To You by Jim Rohn

One of the first things successful people realize is the old adage, “If it is to be, it is up to me.” That is, for you, the fact that your success and your course is up to you. This doesn’t mean that you do it all alone. It simply means that you take responsibility for your life and your career.

Too many people today look at opportunity and figure it is up to someone else to make sure they get it. They look at financial security and hope that the government will make sure they live safely in retirement or in case of disability. They wait and wait, figuring that it is up to someone else. And then the wait is over, and it is too late to do anything. Their life is over and they are filled with regret.

This isn’t true for you however. You know that you must take responsibility for your life. It is up to you.

The fact is that nobody else is going to do it for you; you must do it yourself.

Now, some people may say, “Jim, that’s a lot of responsibility.” Friends, that is the best news you can ever hear. You get to choose your life. Hundreds of millions of people all around this world would give anything to live in the situation you do, just for the chance to have the opportunity to take control of their destiny. “It is up to you” is a great blessing!

Here’s why:

1. You get to chart your own destiny. Maybe you want to start a small business and stay there. That’s great because you can choose that. Maybe you want to create a small chain of stores. Maybe you want to have a net worth of $100 million. That’s okay too. The idea is that you get to choose. You can do whatever you like. Different people have different dreams and they should live them accordingly.

2. You can reap what you sow. Sleep in and go to work late and reap the return. Or get up early and outwork the others and earn a greater return. Place your capital at risk and earn a return or place it at greater risk and perhaps reap a greater return. You decide what you will sow and, thus, what you will reap.

3. No one else can stop you from getting your dream. Yes, there will always be things that come up and people who may not like what you are doing, but you can just move on and chart your own course. There is great freedom in that.

4. You experience the joy of self-determination. There is no greater pride than knowing you set your mind on something and accomplished it. Those who live with a victim mentality never get to experience the joy of accomplishment because they are always waiting for someone else to come to the rescue. Those who take responsibility get to live the joy of seeing a job well done.

Let me ask you a question: Where will you be in 5 years? 10 years? 25 years? Do you know? Do you have an idea? Have you ever dreamed about it or set a goal for it? Are you willing to take responsibility and recognize that, “It is up to you?”

You will be wherever you decide to be in those timeframes. You decide. It is up to you.

And that is very exciting!

To Your Success,
Jim Rohn

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Going the Extra Mile will Get You Even Farther

by Jack Canfield

Going the extra mile

Are you someone who consistently goes the extra mile and routinely over delivers on your promises?

It's rare these days, but it's the hallmark of high achievers who know that exceeding expectations helps you stand above the crowd. Almost by force of habit, successful people simply do more.

As a result, they experience not only greater financial rewards for their extra efforts but also a personal transformation, becoming more self-confident, more self-reliant, and more influential with those around them.

These high achievers stand out from the crowd because of their extra efforts. They are unwilling to give up, even in the face of difficult times.

They get the promotions, they get the loyal customers, they grow their businesses twice as fast, they get financial rewards, job security, and they go home feeling satisfied.

Do you exceed expectations?

Do you surprise people with more than they were expecting from you?

Do you have the opportunity - but also the personal initiative - to go the extra mile?

To be successful you must change your thinking. You can only win by making extra efforts. People who go the extra mile always get payback. You will discover yourself becoming more self-confident, more self-reliant and more influential with those around you.

People notice the special services and all the small touches that make dealing with you so pleasurable. And when they are talking to their friends they will mention you and recommend you because you are the one who stands out.

People will see that you pay attention to detail, that you consider all the small things that really make a business successful, that you care about your image, and that you belong with all the other people who work hard to achieve. You will attract new business and new opportunities.

Listen to any success story and you will hear of someone who worked exceptionally hard to get what they wanted.

You’ll hear how they put in the extra time, did what wasn’t part of their job description, and over-delivered on what was asked of them. You’ll hear how they stuck at it until they broke through, and usually you’ll hear how it only took them a couple of years to do it.

What have you been doing for the past couple of years? Think of what you could accomplish if you made it a habit to exceed everyone’s expectations. Image what doors could be open to you if you decided to be of better service and value.

How are you willing to go the extra mile? What kind of extra service are you willing to provide in order to stand out from the rest? What areas of your life could you be giving more of your effort and time, becoming more valuable, and improving your reputation?

Be willing to treat everyone like you’d treat your dearest friend. Don’t skimp on service. Don’t be mediocre or run of the mill. Show people what you are capable of. Show them that you care about your image and reputation.

When it comes to success, the people who are willing to go the extra mile get there that much faster!

© 2009 Jack Canfield

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Power in Praising People by Chris Widener

One of the keys to success is to have successful relationships. We are not islands and we don’t get to the top by ourselves. And one of the key ways to grow successful in our relationships is to be “life-giving” people to others. Every person we meet, we either give life to or take life from. You know what I mean. There are people who encourage you and when you are done being with them you feel built up. Then there are others who you feel torn down by. Successful people are people who have mastered the art of building others up.

One of the ways we build people up is to praise them. There is power in praising people! Something begins to happen in them, in you, and in your relationship when you praise someone. Remember a time when someone told you something about yourself in a praising manner? It was great, wasn’t it? You probably liked that person more after they praised you, didn’t you?

Now I am not talking about praising people for the sake of praising people. I am talking about honestly looking for and praising positive character traits and actions of others around you. Don’t lie to people. If they have done something wrong, correct it, but when they do something right, praise it!

With that said, here are benefits of and ways to start praising people.


  • Your relationship grows. Life is about relationships. Family relationships, friends and co-workers. When we begin to praise people for their positive aspects, our relationships grow. It puts them, and us, on the fast track.
  • Your leadership and influence grows. Who is going to have greater leadership and influence capacity in the lives of their followers, the one who tears down or the one who builds up?
  • Stronger relationships and loyalty. When the person is appreciated and praised, they become fiercely loyal, because they know that you care for them, love them, and appreciate them. This will take you to success.
  • Happier, more fulfilled people. I truly believe it is our job to build others up, and that they need it. It is a good thing to invest in the lives of others by praising and encouraging them. Even if we never get anything in return, it is the right thing to do to build up other people. Someone else will always come along to tear them down; the successful person will instill in them the power of praise!

Some Ways to Praise

Character traits
Is there someone you know who is joyful? Hard-working? Honest? Then let them know how much you appreciate that in them. You can do it with a word or a card, or a phone call. Say something like this, “You know, Tom, I think it is great that you are such a hard worker. It seems like you are always the first one here and the last one to leave. You really set a good example and I want you to know how much I appreciate that.” Simple!

Same idea as above. “Sue, I don’t know if anybody else has told you this, but your work on the Johnson account was excellent. You have a wonderful ability to communicate the vision of the project, and that helps all the rest of us out in our roles and tasks. Thanks for that. It is greatly appreciated.”

Other ways you can show praise and appreciation is with a card, a gift or time off from work.

Make it your goal to praise at least five people a day. If you can, praise 10 people a day. Or perhaps you can try to praise everyone you come in contact with. It just takes discipline and a little work.

Any way you cut it, though, there is power in praising people. First for them, then for you!

—Chris Widener

Monday, October 19, 2009

拒绝借口之用成绩说话 Posted by 弥缝













原来,在这个人才济济的公司内,每周都要召开一次例会,讲座公司计划。每次开会很多人都争先恐后地表达自己的观点和想法,只有她总是悄无声息地坐在 那里一言不发。她原本有很多好的想法和创意,但是她有些顾虑,一是怕自己刚刚到这里便“妄开言论”,被人认为是张扬,是锋芒毕露,二是怕自己的思路不合主 编的口味,被人看作为幼稚。就这样,在沉默中她度过了一次又一次激烈的争辩会。有一天,她突然发现,这里的人们都在力陈自己的观点,似乎已经把她遗忘在那 里了。于是她开始考虑要扭转这种局面。但这一切为时已晚,没有人再愿意听她的声音了,在所有人的心中,她已经根深蒂固地成了一个没有实力的花瓶人物。最后 她终于因自己的过分沉默而失去了这份工作。所以最后我还是要告诫大家,沉默是金,同时也是埋没天才的沙士,只是看你怎样去利用。

在公司工作,对任何员工都是努力证明自己成绩的战场。无论何时何地,如果你没有做出成绩,你就永远是受别人摆布的棋子,甚至是一枚弃用的棋子。所以 很多时候你需要用成绩证明你的存在。假如你要想证明自己主动努力工作着,惟一的法则就是“成绩”两字,这样你才能赢得上司的青睐。

拒绝借口之自我致胜的八大个性 Posted by 弥缝




  • 告诉自己“总会有别的办法可以办到”



  • 先停下,然后再重新开始,我们时常钻进牛角尖儿而不知自拔,因而看不出新的解决方法





这个人受雇于西北互助人寿保险公司,来管理该公司的北密契根大道上的一座大楼。他开始担任这项工作时,这座大楼只出租了10%。但不到一年,他就把 它全部租出去了,而且还有长长的特租人名单送到他的面前,这其中有什么秘密呢?新经理把无人租用办公室作为一个挑战,而不是作为一个不幸。拿破仑·希尔访 问他时,他介绍了他所做的事情。


  1. 要选择称心的房客。
  2. 要激发吸引力;给房客提供芝加哥市最漂亮的办公室。
  3. 租金不高于他们现在所付的房租。
  4. 如果客房为期一年的租约付给我们同样的租金,我就对他现在的租约负责。
  5. 除此之外,还免费为房客装饰房间。雇用富有创造性的建筑师和内装工,装修大楼的办公室,以适合每个新房客的个人爱好。







  • 学会专注


  • 有必胜的信心


一位著名的击剑运动员在一次比赛中输给了一个与自己水平不分伯仲的对手。第二次相遇,由于上次失利阴影的影响,这名运动员又输掉了,尽管他并非技不 如人。第三次比赛,这名运动员做了的充分的准备,他特意录制了一盘磁带,反复强调自己有实力战胜对手,每天都要将这盘录音听上几遍,心理障碍消除了,他在 第三次比赛中轻松击败打手。


  • 屡败屡战







  • 决不能等待


  • 摒弃消极思想


  • 把握要点



拒绝借口之事业生涯力戒“浮躁” Posted by 弥缝


事业生涯的发展是一个过程,绝非一蹴而就的事情。它需要人们拒绝借口,付出很多琐碎的努力。在这个过程中,你必 须依靠日积月累的办法,最终,这些琐碎的努力都会像涓涓细流聚为势不可挡的汹涌波涛,而且有的时候,成功的到来比你预计的要早。因此,任何人都应当在事业 生涯面前力戒浮躁性格的滋生。认识这一点,对你大有好处。




成功属于谁?属于那些充满自信、 锲而不舍的追求者。他们永远全身心地投入、永远保持着高度的热忱。当然,要做到不屈不挠并不容易,人人都有脆弱的时候,没有必要永远硬着头皮保持一副硬汉 形象。有时候,你的理想会显得那么遥不可及,或是看上去只是一个无法实现的幻想。原因很可能在于你自己太急于求成了。这时不妨放慢节奏,循序渐进。成功人 士往往总比别人先行一步,日积月累,他们的身后便留下一串超越常人的值得骄傲的业绩。懂得了这个道理,都会成功。


从很早开始,基恩·罗德伯瑞就一直梦想创作一部关于到外星旅行的科幻系列片。可是,他的这一想法却没能得到电视台的支持,因为他们认为基恩的想法过 于离奇,不会得到观众的认可。在这种情况下,基恩并没有浮躁,没有放弃自己的主张,他认为高质量的科幻片肯定能受到美国电视观众的欢迎。如今,距离他的 《星球之旅》首播已有30多年了,这部片子成为美国文化的一部分,剧中的不少台词也进入我们的日常用语。《星球之旅——未来人类》是电视网最受欢迎的节 目。



具有浮躁性格的人常常翻箱倒柜地寻找他亲手放置的东西,有时连自己站在哪里都莫名其妙。他不知道自己所念过的书是否已经了解;他常常迟到;他记起账 目来总得复算好几遍,涂改许多次,才能正确无误。总之,他无异于在杂乱无章的垃圾堆里过完了一生。这种环性格不但害了自己,并且还带环了别人,凡是在他手 下工作的人,都将他视作榜样,不把事情当做事情去做,只知应付了事,因为他们看见上司也是这样,到头来,所有的人都将受害无穷。他们事事都做不好,处处都 乱七八糟。他们的整个商店既已深深地中了这个毒,生意当然将大大地清淡下去,弄得门可罗雀。到那时惟有自怨自艾、自叹命薄了。他再也想不到自己一生的事 业,完全会败在这样的性格病上。









How Do You Know If You Are Making the Right Decision? - By Janet Williams

Have you ever faced a big decision and felt paralyzed with fear and torn about what to do? I have worked with many clients who have been faced with wonderful new opportunities and yet they felt overwhelmed by the task of determining how to make the best decision.

Big decisions are challenging when there are many factors to consider and when all the choices have positive potential. When faced with a big complex decision, it is important to break your decision making process into manageable steps and to use all of the tools that you have available.

The 4 Steps that will Guide You to Make the Right Decision

Step 1: Goal Setting Quadrant

Each quadrant of the Body Light Wellness Wheel has strategies to guide you and decision making tools to assist you. Depending on the complexity of your decision, you may need to complete one or two quadrants or all four quadrants. From the Goal Quadrant we learn about the power of writing things down. Consciously, you have the power of your mind to use logic and to analyze your options.

Review Your Goals
First, review the goals that you have written down in the past and determine which choice brings you closer to your goals. This step alone may be the key to helping you make the correct decision.

Create a Pros and Cons List
If reviewing your goals did not give you a sense of clarity about your decision, take a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle. At the top in the first column, write "Pros" and in the second column write "Cons". List out all of the Pros and Cons you can think of. Add up the number of Pros and the number of Cons. You may have 5 Pros and 3 Cons. Become aware of how the numbers of each of these columns makes you feel. If you feel relief at seeing the 5 Pros, you may have found the answer you were looking for.

Determine the Weighting Score of Your Pros and Cons List
If you feel no relief when seeing that the Pros list is larger than the Cons list and are still feeling uneasy, it is time to put a Weighting on each item on the lists. This weighting is either: 1, 2 or 3.

For the Pros, give a weighting of: For the Cons, give a weighting of:
1 -- If it is a Good Pro 1 -- If it is a Small Bad Con
2 -- If it is a Great Pro 2 -- If it is a Medium Bad Con
3 -- If it is an Amazing Pro 3 -- If it is a Big Bad Con

After you have weighted each item and add them up, you may discover that all of your 5 Pros have a weighting of 1, which adds up to 5. The list of the 3 Cons may show that they are all weighted at 3 and showing a total of 9. This may confirm what you knew to be true -- that even through there seem to be many Pros and there are only 3 Cons, the weighting of the Cons outweighs the benefits of the Pros.

Work with a Coach
One of the most powerful ways to accomplish your goals is to work with a trusted Personal Goals Coach, who keeps you accountable to attaining your dreams. Working with a Coach can allow you to face the decision making process more objectively, help you form the list of Pro's and Con's, and help you assess and review the weighting of the items.

A Coach also listens and can reflect back to you what they are hearing from you. A Coach acts as a mirror to help you gain clarity of your thoughts and hopes and fears. Although some people might be tempted to simply work with a friend or a family member for this step, there are dangers to be aware of. Well meaning friends can be jealous about your opportunities (even if it is unconscious) and caring family members can be fearful of change and you leaving them (even if it is unconscious) and these can play havoc in the reflecting back process. For important decisions, it is good to work with a trusted Coach who can be objective and help you in the process of uncovering the best decision for you.

Step 2: Self Discovery Quadrant

Dream Wisdom
From the Self Discovery Quadrant we learn about the power of analyzing the messages in our dreams. Perhaps you have heard the expression that "All the answers are inside of you" and yet you wonder where they might all be hiding. Your unconscious has wonderful wisdom that it tries to share with you nightly.

In the Dream Course we learn how to tap into that wisdom. When faced with a big decision, before you go to bed write your question in your journal and as you fall asleep keep repeating this question to yourself. In the morning, write your dreams down and look for potential answers that you have received.

Taking the Dream Course and working with a Dream Circle can really help you crack your own dream code so that the answers can benefit your decision making process.

Card Reading
Some people find it helpful to have a card reading to uncover insights into their thinking and their decision making process. Working with a trusted Card Reader and using a card deck that you feel comfortable with are the keys to your success.

Step 3: Healing

From the Healing Quadrant we learn about the power of healing. When navigating the muddy waters of the decision making process, it can be a very stressful time going through the process. Stress can add unwanted adrenaline to your body and confusion to your thought process. It is important to continue to give yourself good self care.

An excellent way to reduce stress is to have a massage. For those who have experienced the gentle approach of an Energy Treatment, they know that often when the body and mind are relaxed, insights are able to easily bubble up. These insights can come from both the client and the practitioner during the treatment. Discovering your answer to your big decision is very healing.

Step 4: Yoga

From the Yoga Quadrant we learn about the power of exercise. Going for a long run, walk or rollerblade, playing an intense game of squash or tennis, doing an invigorating yoga class, are all great ways to clear your mind.

By engaging in exercise, you reduce the stress in your body and increase your endorphins. During your workout, focus on the task at hand and let go of the angst around your decision making process. At the end of your workout, your mind will feel clearer and you may also receive an insight about your decision.


By following the wisdom contained in the Body Light Wellness Wheel, you will be able to make the best decisions that you can. If you are faced with a decision and would like help, please feel free to contact us at

** To comment on this article or to read comments about this article, go here.

About the Author:

Janet Williams, the Official Guide to Yoga, is a Certified Primary-Junior Teacher and Yoga Instructor. Her diverse experiences have provided her with insights designed to teach and assist others in their exciting journey of self-discovery. Janet is the owner of Body Light™, which focuses on physical and mental wellness. The unique Body Light™ Wellness System utilizes the power of Yoga, Goal Setting, Healing and Self Discovery to promote health. Janet's new children's yoga book "What I See, I Can Be" is focused on helping parents and teachers provide a safe, age appropriate and fun work out.

How Changing Your Beliefs Can Help You Become More Assertive - By Barbara Small

Have you always wanted to become more assertive - to speak up for yourself, express your feelings freely, say no when you want to and stop being a people-pleaser? If so, what has prevented you from doing so?

One obstacle many people have to behaving assertively is their beliefs about the acceptable ways to interact with other people. These thoughts become habitual and are strengthened by repeated patterns of thinking and the impact of past experiences. We tend to assume these beliefs are accurate, seldom stopping to question their validity.

When you develop positive beliefs about being assertive, you are more likely to engage in assertive behavior and to continue acting assertively in the face of criticism and resistance from others. You are less likely to feel guilty after you have expressed your feelings and opinions or asked for your needs to be met.

Assertive communication is direct (clear, concise and to the point), while the others are indirect (hinting, mixed messages and avoiding the point). Assertive behavior helps communication, while aggressive, passive and passive-aggressive behavior hinders it.

Being assertive means expressing ourselves without hinting, playing games, blaming, or hoping the other person reads our mind. We ask for what we want. We state it clearly and concisely. We say it in a respectful way. We know we can deal with the consequences of our statements, whatever they may turn out to be.

We learn our style of communication from the people around us and how they interact with each other. If a passive parent or an aggressive parent raised us, those are the styles that are most familiar to us and that we are most likely to duplicate. So, just as we learned how to be aggressive, passive or passive-aggressive in the past, we can learn to communicate assertively now.

There are many scenarios that could have encouraged someone to be non-assertive. Some of us were punished when we spoke out so we learned to be passive and quiet. Other people were given messages about expressing themselves, such as "children are to be seen and not heard" or "don't cry or I'll give you something to cry about." As a result they concluded that others did not want to hear what they had to say or how they felt. Still others were taught that it was conceited to put themselves first, so they learned to be people-pleasers.

On the other end of the continuum, people were taught that the only way to get their needs met or to get attention was to compete and be "better" than the other person. They learned how to be aggressive and to win.

It is important to identify what our blocks are to being assertive, so that in addition to learning practical skills on how to communicate assertively, we can also work at clearing away any obstacles to initiating and maintaining these new behaviors.

Take a moment to reflect. How did you personally learn to be non-assertive? What were some of your life experiences which emphasized your passivity, aggression or other non-assertive behavior?

Do any of these beliefs about communicating assertively sound familiar?
• It's selfish
• Others will think I am arrogant and conceited
• I will hurt the other person's feelings
• The other person will get angry
• I need to appear stronger than them
• Other's needs come first
• It's rude
• I will get in trouble

What are three negative beliefs you personally have about being assertive and that keep you non-assertive?

One very common belief that is an obstacle to behaving assertively is that others will think that we are being selfish. Taking care of our own needs and expressing ourselves does not mean that we are being selfish. For many people the word "selfish" has a very negative connotation. I like to say we are being "self-full". Our needs and other people's needs do not have to be mutually exclusive. Just because we make choices for ourselves does not mean that we will always choose to ignore others and not do anything for them. But when we do consider others, we will do it from a place of choice rather than a place of "have to" or fear.

Also, when we make choices for others we may be taking away the opportunity for them to make choices for themselves. So instead of thinking of being assertive as being selfish, think of it as respecting our rights and the rights of others to make personal choices for ourselves.

Others may be surprised and comment negatively on our assertiveness, but that does not mean we acted inappropriately. Sometimes people don't like other people who are assertive. They may think an assertive person is "full of themselves" and doesn't care about other people. This can often be because the recipient of the assertive behavior is not getting what they want. They can't manipulate the other person. The assertive person is standing up to them and that doesn't work for them.

How someone responds to our assertiveness is his or her choice. We are not responsible for someone else's feelings, actions or decisions.

If they do not like your behavior it is up to them to be assertive with us as well and let us know. Or they need to find some other way to get their needs met. Assertiveness allows flexibility and space for negotiation.

Self-esteem and assertiveness are directly related. If we don't feel good about ourselves and believe in ourselves, we are more likely to look externally for answers and motivation. If we don't trust ourselves, we are less likely to be assertive and express our feelings, needs and wants. We are more likely to try to manipulate and control the situation so that the outcome is predictable and something we can cope with. We are less likely to take risks where we don't know the outcome, because we won't trust that we can handle it.

Therefore, improving your self-esteem will help you to be more assertive. Similarly, the positive outcomes from taking the risk to act assertively will help to boost your belief in yourself and boost your self-esteem.

Overall, thinking positively about being assertive makes it easier to actually be assertive. We can increase our ability to communicate in an assertive manner by replacing our non-assertive messages (self-talk) with messages that support assertive behavior, such as:
• I have the right to be assertive
• I deserve to make choices that support me
• All my feelings are valid
• I have the right to say no
• I do no have to offer excuses for my choices or behaviors
• I have the right to ask to have my needs met

What are three positive beliefs that would support you being assertive? Look back at the three negative beliefs you listed above for ideas. Try changing them into positive statements.

It takes time and practice to change our communication style and become more assertive. By recognizing which of our old beliefs keep us non-assertive, challenging them and then replacing them with new beliefs that support us being assertive, we can increase the likelihood of us initiating and maintaining a new assertive and confident style of communication.

** To comment on this article or to read comments about this article, go here.

About the Author:

Barbara Small has a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology and is also trained as a Life Coach. She worked with clients in private practice for over a decade and has been a workshop facilitator, trainer and public speaker since 1993. Barbara is the author of three self-help books entitled: "What About Me, What Do I Want? Becoming Assertive", "Blah, blah, blah… Changing Your Negative Self-Talk" and "If I Could Just Get Out of My Own Head: A No-Nonsense Guide to Communicating Effectively". Using humor and real life examples from both her personal and professional lives, Barbara focuses on practical, no-nonsense skills and techniques that are applicable to anyone in any situation. Her books have sold nationally as well as internationally.

Barbara is a communication, assertiveness and self-talk expert on .
Get your own copy of Barbara's book, "What About Me, What Do I Want? Becoming Assertive." Discover the no-nonsense and practical tips and techniques Barbara implemented herself to move from being passive and a people-pleaser to confident and assertive. Purchase this book today and receive 20 free bonus gifts valued at over $600.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Concentrate on Your Resources

By Brian Tracy

The Principle of Mass requires that you concentrate on your best people, your best energies, and your limited resources in those areas where the greatest victories are possible. Restructure and reorganize your activities so that your best talents are focused on those results that can get you out of the crunch faster than any others.

Stay Flexible
The Principle of Maneuver is one of the greatest battlefield successes; it requires that you out-maneuver your enemy by attacking from the flank or the rear. In business, the practice of this principle requires that you try something new, and if that doesn't work, try something else. Be flexible and creative in your approach. Think of doing exactly the opposite of what you have done up until now. Keep all your options open. Survival and victory are your only considerations.

Gather All Available Information
The Principle of Intelligence means that you must get the facts about the situation. Learn everything you can. Ask questions, phone people, go onto the Internet. The more and better information you have, the better and more effective decisions you will be able to make.

Crunch Time
"Turn Any Problem into Your Success!"
Problems come up all the time in business and in life. Do you know the best way to handle them?

How you succeed in business and life depends not on what problems you get, but what YOU do about them. Click for more >>

Get Everyone Working Together
Concerted Action makes sure that everyone on your team is working together with common goals, common values, and clearly understood work assignments. Everyone should know what is going on and what everyone else is doing. One of the rules for military victory is that you never trust to luck or wish that something will turn up. Hope is not a strategy. Look to yourself and don't expect an easy victory.

Napoleon was once asked if he believed in luck in warfare. He replied, “Yes, I believe in luck. I believe in bad luck, and I believe that I will always have it. I therefore plan accordingly.” You should do the same. If you do have a streak of good luck, consider yourself blessed. But don't count on it or hope for it to happen.

You're the Boss!
Unity of Command is a military strategy that means that everyone must know that you are completely in command. You are in charge of your financial future. You are calling the shots. Everyone reports to you and answers to you. You can go back to democratic consensus later, but during crunch time, it must be clear to everyone that you are the boss.

Total Commitment to Your Financial Success
Finally, in taking action to resolve a crisis, perhaps the most important quality you can have is a total commitment to your financial success, to winning, to overcoming your difficulties, no matter what they are. The key to financial victory is for you to go on the attack, relentlessly moving forward. It has been said that boldness and audacity will get you into a lot of problems, but more, boldness and audacity will get you out of your problems as well. Take action immediately, and keep on taking action until you win.

Action Exercise
Identify the goal that you must attain, usually financial, to resolve the crisis and get out of the crunch. Be sure that everyone is clear on this one objective.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Win-Win Decisions by Dr. John C. Maxwell

College basketball fans turn their attention each spring to March Madness, otherwise known as the NCAA Tournament. It's a hoop-junkie's dream come true - four weeks of "win-or-go-home" basketball featuring the best teams in the land. But what if they didn't keep score? What if they just played for fun? It doesn't work that way in athletics, and it seldom works that way in the professional world. We set goals, we measure results and, ultimately, we win or go home depending upon how well we do against the competition. So when we're making key decisions as leaders, it can seem counter-intuitive to filter outcomes with the question that I'm going to recommend: Is this mutually beneficial? I love competition, but every deal shouldn't end with an "I won, you lost" outcome. In fact, I'm convinced that it's possible - and profitable - to consistently make mutually beneficial decisions with the people and organizations that work with and around us. Here's why it's worth the effort:

1. It adds value to others.
This is a personal value of mine and a value of the organizations that I lead. It requires that we start every day and every discussion and every decision-making process with objective of helping others improve. All too often, people go into a meeting or a negotiation asking, "What can I get from them? What's in it for me? How can I sneak something by them?" Wouldn't it be terrible to spend day after day driven by the tactics of manipulation? When you're done, you can say, "I won and you lost." But then what? You go back to life. You've got to go back to why we're here. And we are our brothers' keepers. That's what we're here to do. And to lighten someone else's load is a very noble cause.

2. It compounds influence, effectiveness and results.
When you come to the table with the attitude of helping and serving others, you immediately compound the influence, effectiveness and results of everyone involved, whether it's two people, a group of people or multiple organizations.

We experienced this not long ago when working with the Christian Broadcasting Network. I was representing EQUIP, our non-profit ministry, at a meeting with the leaders of CBN. Because we went into the meetings looking to make mutually beneficial decisions and not just bottom line issues like funding, we discovered ways to make each other better. They needed training for their leaders, which I unconditionally agreed to provide. And their equipment, technology and experience will help us lower production costs for things like DVD's that we use for the ministry.

3. It strengthens relationships.
You've probably heard the expression; "It's lonely at the top." Well, I want to go to the top, but I have no desire to go alone. If you're alone at the top, you're probably not a leader, anyway. Who are you leading other than yourself? Leaders take people on the journey with them. They help take others to the top. Relationships are important, and mutually beneficial decisions strengthen relationships. When you have the heart and desire to add value to people and you long as a leader to pour into other people's lives first, then you begin to add value to them and you begin to lift them to a higher level. The benefits are compounded and relationships are strengthened. When that happens, the score really doesn't matter. Everybody wins.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Four Ways to Create Your Legacy

By sharing your wisdom, experience and gifts with others, you build a legacy that will last far beyond your years.

Chelsea Greenwood October 12, 2009

IMAGINE YOUR FUNERAL. Not the brightest topic, to be sure, but one worth serious thought—no matter what your age. Your family and friends have gathered to honor your life. But what do you leave behind? Beyond the contents of your last will and testament, what part of you remains on earth even after you've passed away?

Your legacy. It's something you create during your life solely to benefit future generations, something you may never see come to fruition. Just like a farmer who plants a tree knowing he'll never live to taste its fruits, a legacy is a gift you leave behind without expecting anything in return. Think of John F. Kennedy and the space program or Martin Luther King Jr. and civil rights. They died before their legacies were fulfilled, but they will be forever revered for their efforts.

Just like that farmer's sprouting tree, legacies don't happen overnight—and they don't happen by accident. They're deliberately crafted over years of hard work and dedication. But you don't have to give up your worldly possessions and become a Mother Teresa to start building your legacy now. Here's how.

Understand your legacy.

First, you need to really grasp why it's important to leave a legacy in the first place.

"The legacy we leave is part of the ongoing foundations of life," says business philosopher and author Jim Rohn. "Those who came before leave us the world we live in. Those who will come after will have only what we leave them. We are stewards of this world, and we have a calling in our lives to leave it better than how we found it, even if it seems like such a small part."

Look back on your own life, and you'll see legacy-leavers everywhere, from the founding fathers of our nation to your parents, former teachers and elder family members. All of these people left you with instructions on how to live—for better or for worse. And now it's your turn to decide what kind of legacy you'll leave for posterity.

Choose your legacy.

Legacies come in different shapes and forms, requiring varying levels of effort and commitment. Some choose to leave financial legacies, supporting causes such as funding breast cancer research or a new building at one's alma mater. Other legacies are institutional, like when somebody founds a nonprofit or builds a business that's a positive force in the community. All of these examples have their value and place in society.

Yet, in his The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John C. Maxwell believes in a third, more lasting avenue of legacy. "Too often, leaders put their energy into organizations, buildings, systems or other lifeless objects," says the leadership expert and bestselling author. "But only people live on after we are gone. Everything else is temporary."

Gerontologist and author Ken Dychtwald reached a similar conclusion in a recent survey focusing on elder generations and their baby boomer children. He and colleagues at his company, Age Wave, discovered four "pillars of legacy": values and life lessons, instructions and wishes to be fulfilled, possessions of emotional value, and property and money. When asked which pillar meant the most to them, both groups answered resoundingly: values and life lessons.

"There's this enormous craving, this desire for people in their maturity to share what they've learned, to pass on lessons of a lifetime, to teach, to feel that their life experience is being invested, even planted, into the field of tomorrow," Dychtwald says. "There was also a similar response—a natural, innate appetite on the part of younger generations—to receive that."

Focus your legacy.

Granted, conveying the accumulated lessons of a lifetime is easier said than done. In deciding exactly what you want to put out into the world, look inward first.

Start by identifying your strengths. The most obvious place to look is your career—but don't just focus on your job title, Dychtwald says. "You are trained to think of your skills and talents as what you do at work," he says in his latest book With Purpose: Going from Success to Significance in Work and Life. "But if you think of them as core strengths instead, you can begin to see how they are more widely applicable. Youâ??re not just an administrative assistant; you're someone who gets things done. You're not jut a retail manager; you're someone who can spot the strengths in others and suit them to the task."

Talk to your colleagues, friends and family members for their insight. Keep a running list, and see which strengths come up most frequently. Often, others see our gifts more clearly than we do.

Also, consider what topics and activities you're passionate about and that you find interesting. "Think about how you spend your time," Dychtwald says. "Most of us tend to be drawn—either directly or indirectly—to the settings, activities and people that allow us to express our interests."

In short, your legacy should be a labor of love—not a chore.

Next, use the findings from your introspection to establish a "life sentence." Writer and politician Clare Boothe Luce embraced this idea of "a statement summarizing the goal and purpose of one's life," says Maxwell. His own statement has changed over time—from "I want to be a great pastor" to "I want to be a great communicator"— but he thinks that he's finally settled on a winner. "My life sentence is, 'I want to add value to leaders who will multiply value to others.'"

This statement is important because it "not only sets the direction for your life but it also determines the legacy you will leave," he says. Focus on your life sentence throughout your journey, and use it to keep you on track.

Live your legacy.

Now that you have a plan of action, it's time to implement it. "What must you change in the way you conduct yourself so that you live that legacy?" Maxwell asks. "Your list may include behavioral changes, character development, education, working methods, relationship-building style and so on. Only by changing the way you live will you be able to create the legacy you want to leave."

Both Maxwell and Dychtwald compare the act of leaving a legacy to passing a baton. "If you've ever watched a relay race, the most important moment of the race is the passing of the baton," Dychtwald says. "The art of handing off that baton is quite spectacular when it's done well. In our society, we don't put that much credence on sitting at the feet of our elders and allowing them to transfer to us the legacy of their lives. And I think that's a great loss."

So, now that you're in the role of the elder, the baton-passer, who will be the recipient? Who will you invite to sit at your feet? Picture your life—and the people in it—as a succession of increasingly larger rings reaching out from a center point: you. Now think about how you can impart your legacy upon the people of those rings, starting with your family. Both your actions and words leave a legacy behind for your children and younger family members, so make sure that you lead by example as well as by what you say. As they grow older, these younger generations will likely seek your wisdom and want to hear about your life experiences. Share the lessons that have meant the most to you.

For many, the next ring outward is one's primary occupation. Think about whom you could mentor in your work environment and how. Which of your core strengths could benefit others in their pursuit of success? Where do you see unrealized potential, and how can you unleash it?

Many might think that today's cutthroat business environment isn't the place for cultivating such relationships—but Dychtwald disagrees. "The soul of American capitalism is, in its heart, enormously generous of spirit," he says. "This idea that business shouldn't solely be about profit-making but contributing to people's lives and trading wisdom, trading positive experiences, has largely been covered over for decades.

"The culture of work has largely become fragmented by people trying to serve their own needs and short-term loyalties. I think there's much legacy that can be accomplished with your work team, with the way people relate to each other, joining forces with the idea of people coming together to do something great."

Next, look even farther outward (perhaps even outside your comfort zone) to how you can benefit strangers through different groups and organizations. New York City lawyer Matthew Weiss does just that. For the past nine years, Weiss has been a member of the nonprofit Entrepreneurs' Organization, mentoring up-and-coming businesspeople and networking with other small-business owners (Weiss's eponymous law firm is the third company he has started).

"I'm always looking to help other people with what they need," he says. "I meet someone and I want to know, 'What are your challenges in your business? What are your challenges in your life?' And I try and put people together to solve those problems."

Weiss says even when he doubts how useful he can be to the 20- and 30-something entrepreneurs whom he mentors, he's always surprised how his advice can make a difference.

"I didn't realize how much value I had to offer them and the clarity I could provide when they're trying to figure out what their issue might be or how to overcome the issue," says the husband and father of three. "Watching their faces light up when I give them what I think is a pretty simple answer...for me, it's really rewarding to watch that 'light bulb' moment occur."

And, after all, isn't that what it's all about—that "light bulb" moment, illuminating the lives of generations to come, helping them navigate the road ahead? Dychtwald thinks so.

"What's the purpose of having 60, 80, 100 years of life?" he asks. "It's not just to have an enormous wealth of experiences. But I think it's to have time and energy and the resources to teach, to give it back. [Developmental psychologist Erik] Erikson had this great quote: 'I am what survives of me.' That's really a very different sort of battle cry. Stepping out of one's moment in time and thinking about oneself in the chain of development from generation to generation and being motivated to not only make something of oneself—but to share it."

How To Make Closing The Sale So Much Easier

By Jim Klein

In the last edition of the "Sales Advisor" I talked about the
difference between a suspect and a prospect and the three mistakes
many sales people make during the qualifying process.

Now, let's dive into the qualifying step in the sales process. The
step I call, "Finding the Problems".

If you really want to differentiate yourself from the competition,
take the time to learn about and show a genuine interest in your
prospect's current situation, and the problems they are facing on a
daily basis.

When it comes to qualifying a prospect it's important to understand
the reasons why people do things, and ultimately, why they will or
will not purchase your product or service. You see, people will
purchase your product or service to satisfy one of two main needs.
Some times they will even purchase to satisfy both needs.

These two needs are:

1.The need to avoid pain, or a loss

2.The need to gain pleasure.

These are the two motivating factors in a person for doing anything
in their life; to gain pleasure, or to avoid pain. You may have
heard it stated this way, "The carrot or the stick". The carrot
represents the edible reward, while the stick refers to a punishing

Your goal in finding the answer to the prospects' problems is to
find the pleasure they wish to gain or the pain they wish to avoid,
and then show them how your product or service will help them avoid
that pain, or gain the pleasure they seek.

Does that make sense?

Great! Let's move on...

People purchase products or services based on emotional needs or
wants, and then justify their purchase logically.

So, in the qualifying phase of the sales process you need to find
what the desired results are your prospect is seeking. Then you
must dig deep to find their internal emotional reasons for wanting
what they are telling you they want.

When you connect with people and their emotional reasons for
wanting what they desire, you have tremendous power to give them
what they want, and have them feel great about buying your product
or service.

At this point you are probably wondering how to do that.

Let me explain...

In order for a prospect to find value in what you are attempting to
sell them, you have to understand they have a problem they need
some help with. Once you understand this, you can show them how
your product or service can solve their problem.

If a prospect doesn't have a problem, or has a problem your product
or service will not solve for them, you'll be spinning your wheels
trying to sell them. Many sales people will attempt to sell their
product or service to this prospect; however, it's usually ends
poorly for the sales person.

There are different types of prospects. I will cover each one so
you'll know when you encounter them.

First, you have the prospect who knows they have a problem and are
eager to find a solution for it.

Second, you have the prospect that is somewhat aware that they have
a problem; however, they're not quite sure how to go about solving
it. This particular type may also not be aware of the consequences
of not solving their problem. In other, words it's not a priority
for them.

The third type of prospect isn't even aware they have a problem.

You need to handle each type of prospect in exactly the same way.
You need to use the same process of questioning and probing
regardless of whether the prospect knows they have a problem or not.

When the prospect shows an obvious need for your product or
service, don't fall into the trap many salespeople fall into.
Resist the temptation at this point to show them what your product
or service will do for them, the benefits of doing business with
you and your company, and how much they will invest in what you're

Then they shake your hand, thank you for coming, and tell you they
need to think about it, and you walk out wondering why you didn't
make the sale.

You didn't make the sale because you didn't follow the sales
process and proceed with the question and probing phase of the
process. You figured you could take a short cut and save yourself
some time. What you did was waste your time, and the possibility of
making a sale.

Do not, under any circumstances, think you can skip any step,
including qualifying. Follow every step in the process. I know you
think you may be saving yourself time, however, in the long run;
skipping steps will cost you time and money.

So what questions should you ask?

You should always ask open end questions. Open end questions begin
with "who", "what", "when", "where', "how" and "why". An open end
question cannot be answered with "yes or no". Open ended questions
require the prospect to tell you what they think, what they want,
or how they feel.

First of all, you want to determine what product or service they
are currently using. So, begin with a simple question, "What
product or service are you currently using?" Remember, when you ask
a question, close your mouth and listen. Don't think about what
you're going to say next. Listen to what they are saying, and don't
speak until the prospect finishes talking.

An important lesson I've learned in sales is that most people will
tell you anything you want to know. All you have to do is ask.
People love to talk about themselves, and want to share information
about their current situation, problems, likes and dislikes.
However, in most cases they need to be prompted. This prompting
comes from asking the right questions in the right tone and manner.

When you begin probing, ask general questions. General questions
are less threatening; they get the ball rolling, and give you
information so you can determine which direction to aim your more
specific questions.

Another general question to ask is, "What do you like most about
the current product or service you are using?"; "What do you like
least?", or, "How would you like it to be different?" "If you could
design the perfect product or service to meet you needs, what would
it do for you?"

I used a similar form of question when I sold Real Estate. I asked
my buyers to describe the perfect house, right down to the last
detail. I mean everything they would ideally want in their house.
Then, depending on the price range they could afford, I would
narrow the list down to the most important ones they would be apt
to find in a house, in their price range.

The product or service someone currently owns, and what they like
or dislike about it, will tell you a lot about what buying
decisions they will make in the future. This line of questioning
will give you a general understanding of what they are looking for,
and how your product or service fits their needs.

The questions regarding what they like, dislike, or wish were
different, will give you some insight into the pain they are
looking to avoid, and the pleasure they want to gain. Also, it will
tell you if they want something similar to what they currently
have, or something different.

You should spend as much time as you need on this phase of
questioning. It's important to the process to get as much general
information as possible before deciding the direction to take your
questioning. Don't be concerned your prospect will object to the
number of questions.

Actually, what you will find, if your questions are asked with a
genuine interest and caring attitude, your prospect will be more
than willing to share the answers. After all, you're there to help
them solve their problem, and if that's really your primary focus,
they will relax and tell you anything you want to know.

I know you're thinking you're there to make a sale, and you are;
however, as I've said before, get the dollar signs out of your
eyes. "When you stop treating the prospect like a paycheck, and put
their needs first, you will be on your way to earning more money
than you can imagine".

You need to change your thinking to "How can I provide service"?
The compensation you receive is in direct proportion to how much
value you provide.

OK, you've gotten answers to your general questions from your
prospect. However, the general questions you have been asking have
only touched the surface of the real problem you can solve for them.

You want to continue to ask open ended questions, however, now you
want to probe deeper to find the logical and emotional reasons why
they want what you are offering.

I will cover this portion of "Finding the Problems" in next weeks
"Sales Advisor", so be sure not to miss it.