Monthly Archives: June 2010

Courage is simply the willingness to be afraid and act anyway.”

 Dr. Robert Anthony


What kind of energy are you walking around with?   Is it energy that is positive, motivating, inspiring, creative and passion filled?   If your energy is positive then you are living with what is known as anabolic energy, the kind of energy that gives you the desire to put in 100% to the work you are doing.   The other kind of energy is catabolic.   It is destructive and can rob you of the desire to do what your heart is telling you to do.

So, what is anabolic and catabolic energy and why does it matter.   First of all it matters because when our lives are filled with catabolic energy, negative energy, we falter, we sputter, we at times fall victim to our thoughts and mutter words that are destructive to self and others.     When someone is complacent, apathetic, whining, worrying, anxiety filled, and living as a victim that is an energy robbing state.   You probably know  people who just drain the energy right out of you.   What would you feel like if you could identify and live in a more positively energetic day?  What would it mean to you to have a lot less catabolic energy in your life?  

Think about it – it would mean greater success, significance, confidence, passion, commitment, creativity, joy, peace, and happiness in your life and who wouldn’t want more of that?     

Next time – anabolic energy, and how that can impact you.

Wall of Change

“You may be whatever you resolve to be”  General Stonewall Jackson


Change is difficult, challenging, demanding, and even chaotic.  Change is something most people resist and try to avoid, yet change is the impetus for growth and personal development.   Change is the role of a leader and everyone is a leader in some way.   Change is the mechanism by which people, organizations, states, countries and the world grows.   Growth is a necessary component for healthy living.

A leader has to be the first one to change, to absorb change, to reconcile change and then implement change.   For the followers change is often seen as a waste of time, a mechanism that breaks habits, causes stress and slows things down.    In what areas do you resist change?

In today’s world personal development is no longer an option it is a requirement.   Personal development requires change, the change from old to new habits and ideas.   Personal development and growth is a requirement for every career and every relationship.   In what areas are you developing your skills and talents?

If the ways you do things today aren’t working for you, change.  Find new ways, learn new things and begin to see life in a new light.   What areas in your life require more attention from you?

Take time to smell the flowers

Have you taken time to smell the flowers?   Have you taken the time to just stop and look at the beauty that surrounds you?

Often the pace of the world grabs us by our hands and takes us for a walk on a path we’d rather not be on and when that happens we don’t take time to see the world.    The time for peace, quiet and serenity disappears into the noise and chaos of the day.    See the day!

low energy?

Earl Nightingale said, “The key that unlocks energy is desire. It’s also the key to a long and interesting life. If we expect to create any drive, any real force within ourselves, we have to get excited.”   Where is your energy level?  

Are you fully engaged in life?   What does that mean “engaged” in life?   What do you do that is fully motivating, powerful, and orientated towards your passions?

Many people go through live living in anger or complacency.    You probably know some people who are perpetually angry, unsatisfied and fed up with their circumstances.  They are the people who moan and complain with vigor at the situation they find themselves in.   Do you know someone like that?

There are others who continually whine about how life is out to get them and that everyone they know is out to get them.   These people are resigned to a life of complacency and being a victim of the circumstances that they find themselves in.   Do you know someone like that?

People who are complaining and whining about life are living in what is called a “catabolic” energy state.   This is negative energy and this kind of energy robs people of the joy, and potential that life offers.   Catabolic energy takes from life more than it gives to it.  

What would it look for you if you had less catabolic energy in your life?

courage wanted

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.” Ambrose Redmoon

The list of those experiencing job layoffs is still growing.   Daily people are informed that they will no longer be needed.   Those people walk out in shock wondering why they were picked.   Those that were left behind wonder why they weren’t picked.    It is not easy to be either the survivor or the one that has to work the streets to find new employment.    Some people have the courage to reinvent themselves and set out to create a new life.   Either path it isn’t easy as it takes a great deal of courage to ford the streams of change. 

People review their life and wonder why; others will review their life and give it a try.   The courage to step out and try something new and risky is not for everyone.   The risk of failure, of losing it all to a dream, strongly dances in the mind.   Yet in spite of the risk those with an abiding passion will push forward through the worry and see it as opportunity, an opportunity that if not taken, will leave them with the question, “Why not?”.

Courage, courage to step forward and embrace the challenge with great strength and determination is reserved for those who are willing to take a risk and step far beyond their comfort zone.  For those that can and do there is the opportunity for great personal reward.  Courage do you have it?

cross the bridge

“Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.”
Audre Lorde

What fears to you need to approach with courage today?   What changes do you want to make in your life that will set you free from your fears and worries?

Respond to fear with courage.   Respond to fear with tenacity.   Respond to fear with your own passions.   Begin to live your life, not the life that has been bounded by fear, and live it fully.

From the inside out …

As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.
Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Life in the fast lane, life in the slow lane and life in the ditch, where is yours?

Some people are thrilled the way their life is going and some aren’t.   Some people are struggling each day to fit any piece of the puzzle of life together and others look like they have the puzzle completed.

The real puzzle isn’t what is seen on the outside, it is what is happening on the inside.   This is where life takes place, in the heart and in the soul.   Some people appear to have everything anyone could imagine and it could be that those are the very people who are struggling the most.    The calm exterior, the smiling face, the strong laugh, the unending positive story could be real or it could be a façade to a life that is empty and without meaning.

Living on the inside to make life on the outside great is a difficult task to achieve.   Living fully from the inside out means that you believe in who you are and where you are going.    Start making choices that boost the self-esteem and as a result leave you in a position where you have choices rather than having choices being made for you by others.

What does your life look like from the inside out?

fair treatment …

After months of economic struggles in the economy there seems to be some signs of growth for employment.  Many companies have been able to get away with poor management and leadership practices during the economic malaise the country has experienced.   With workers sensing a new opportunity for obtaining a different job there may be a tidal wave of employees looking for alternative places to work.

What many employers have forgotten in the restructure of the American economy is that the essentials of human motivation haven’t changed over time and that is, that people need to be treated fairly and equitably in all aspects.   If people are going to be treated as disposable commodities then worker loyalty is going to be low.  With the belief that workers are merely temporary hands will show up as lower employee engagement.

Morale of workers is important if companies desire a high degree of success.   Enthusiastic employees are more engaged in the work they do and have corresponding high degree of success, customer satisfaction and high levels of output, 30-40% higher than employees that aren’t motivated.    It is easy to see that engaging employees and providing the right levels of support is a key to success.

The relationship between employee morale and performance is reciprocal and as morale increases so does performance and when performance increases and people see great results morale increases again.   This relationship between positive feedback and positive results is an essential ingredient in overall business success.  In organizations where perceived results are negative morale will collapse as there is no emotional incentive to produce at higher levels.   When the message is constant that the results aren’t good enough despite high levels of contribution from the employees motivation to produce more or better results are going to be difficult to achieve.

When employees are treated as fungible assets the message isn’t about loyalty and higher productivity, the goals an organization desires, but rather it is the belief that everyone is an expendable commodity and that sends a clear message as to the worth of an individual contributor in that community.

The idea that employees are expendable can be attributed to management’s belief that people are just that, expendable, which is often contrary to the stated messages used to recruit people, “People are our most valued asset”.

To understand why people aren’t valued as key corporate assets it might be useful to review what happens in companies that lose their way.  Management/ leaders have a view that:

  1. That they are #1 in their game.   Arrogance with respect to the value and quality of the products or services the organization produces believing that others don’t have the ability to produce to the same level.
  2. Confused interests.   Personal and corporate boundaries aren’t clearly maintained and as a result personal ambition becomes the driving force in an attempt to build a personal empire.
  3. They have the answers.    When the dialogue and agenda becomes one-sided, the idea that only management/leaders have the answer and all others merely obey the dictates of management.
  4. Selective disengagement.   When leaders remove anyone not 100% committed to their goal.   Contrasting positions or ideas are defined as not being committed to the cause and those people are removed in short order.
  5. Great performance is valued over great results.    When leaders and management focus more on the style and quality of a presentation rather than the content of the presentation suggest a shift from accomplishment to presentation performance.   It looks good on the outside therefore it must be good on the inside.   The real discussion should be about the results and how to achieve better results rather than having  a “pretty” presentation.
  6. Underestimating the problems.     It some cases leaders will be so consumed with their personal ambition that they neglect to understand the risks and complexities of implementing their vision.    The enormous need to succeed and be seen as a visionary leader can often lead to projects that are designed to promote the desires of the leader rather than being the right solution for the organization.   Unrealistic expectations at the senior levels of an organization can lead to investments that are not able to produce the desired outcomes.
  7. Reliance on methods that worked in the past.    Methods and processes that appeared to work in the past may not be what are best for today.   In some cases leaders rely on processes or methods that had worked for them in the past and stubbornly believe that those methods should work in the present.   The inability to let go of old techniques often suffocates the innovation needed to create solutions that will work.
  8. Insulative behaviors.  Moving away from individuals contributors and working only with other senior level leaders and managers isolates ideas, issues and concerns from being heard.

Employees want equity and fairness in the workplace.  Increasing employee engagement means building trust and respect with the employees, and letting them know what is happening rather than operating under a cloak of secrecy.

To successfully navigate the turbulence of the workplace, workers need to have alternative plans and be ready to implement those plans.    Hoping for long term employment at the same organization is wishful thinking and in today’s hyper- competitive marketplace having options available is a good plan of action.

What is your plan of action?   How are you preparing for your future?