Avoiding Soapbox Conversations

Posted by on Sep 1, 2011 in Featured | 0 comments

We meet. We converse. We enjoyed each others company. We part ways. We leave the conversation wondering what we are supposed to do next. Why was that interaction important to me? Whether you have thought about it or not, you better start paying attention to the conversational reactions you are having. Internal conversations are distracting your attention and focus. They are preventing you from deepening your connection with the other person. You are withholding the greatest gift you can give, your full conscious attention. Your future success depends on changing this behavior. I know what you are thinking…another post telling me what to do…just what I needed. {Insert sarcastic reaction here} Before you exit stage left, let’s get one thing clear. You and I cannot have a conversation without your full participation. We cannot help each other become a better version of ourselves without engaging in a meaningful two-way conversation. My intention is to elevate our conversation…help you find your own answers.  Me standing on a soapbox preaching is a one-way conversation. This type of dialog is reserved for the politicians, salesmen, lobbyists, and preachers.  You could view this post as a sermon or you can view it as an opportunity to share your experiences while learning. Don’t read the rest of this post unless you are teachable. Coaching clients repeatedly ask if I learn from our conversations. The answer is a resounding YES. I learn how I show up in the world.  I learn what is important to me. I learn what I need to work on. My perceptions are challenged and I find new opportunities for growth. My coachees help me find my own answers. Our true character is revealed in conversation. Conversations are much more than an exchange of information. Our physical and emotional reactions are clues to discovering our truth. Try as we might, we cannot hide who we are from the people we interact with. Every dialog reveals who we are and how we see the world. Our core beliefs and emotional state of being are ever-present and accounted for. Any attempts to internalize our thoughts and feelings will only result in masking our truth. We cannot hide from our truth. We must be present, honest, and fully transparent with ourselves. Expansive growth comes from adopting these simple principles. Unconscious conversing is akin to standing on a soapbox preaching. Heightened awareness drives conscious communication. Learning how to raise our awareness opens the door to new possibilities. Good news is, conscious awareness is an easily learned skill. Here’s some guiding principles to help you begin your learning.— We are who we are, and the other person is who they are The only one we can control is ourselves Our gender, cultural heritage, religion, family,...

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3 Types of Promises

Posted by on Aug 1, 2011 in Featured | 0 comments

When you boil it down to its essence, all communication is about coordinating action with people. We fail when we are not clear with our language and intent. What is obvious to me may not be obvious to you. Relationships trust is established based on our ability to communicate in unison with each other. Healthy relationships are based on promise making, promise keeping, and promise managing. Promises are the foundation for our public identity, our effectiveness, and our well-being. We may not call them commitments, but promises are agreements and decisions about who is going to do what, when, and how.  A commitment is a promise to ourselves and a promise to others. We cannot have shared commitment without shared understanding. Our expectations are based on the promises we think we have made. Unspoken expectations are premeditative broken promises. People do not care about your expectations.  Or mine. They care about the commitments we make and keep. A promise is a personal commitment people expect you to honor.     There are 3 types of promises. 1. Strong/Healthy Promises Promises I am fully committed to keep; You can count on me. If I am unable to keep my promise, I can renegotiate my original promise i.e. I will meet you for coffee at 8 am. I will complete my assignment on time. 2.— Shallow Promises Look like a strong promise, but an unspoken condition exists. i.e. Yes, I will play golf with you on Saturday (unless it rains or something else comes up) —3. Criminal Promises Promises that at the moment we make them, we know we have no intention of keeping i.e.  Maybe…My son asks me to play with him when I am done, and I tell him maybe Promises unkept are NOT equal to expectations unmet.         What promises are you making?        Are you honoring those promises?        What promises are you fully committed to honoring?        What promises do you need to renegotiate? Personal integrity and honor depends on owning and delivering on the promises we make. Relationship trust is too valuable to take for granted. Commit to making STRONG HEALTHY promises....

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We already know our future

Posted by on Jul 20, 2011 in Featured | 0 comments

Warning: Don’t believe this next statement unless you want to flourish. We already know our future if we don’t continually take proactive action. Our economic well-being demands perpetual reinvention. As the old saying goes, reinvent or die. This no longer a fancy tagline, it is required action to survive and succeed in today’s economic climate. The days are long gone when a company could create a product and reap the rewards of its success for years to come.  Present day examples are all around you. Facebook was king of the castle and Twitter was the knight in shiny armor. Now there’s Google +. Remember MySpace? Me neither. Flip Camera ruled the pocket video cam game.  Now, your smartphone does. Mobile Apps are replacing websites and higher costs software programs. iPads are being integrated into the classroom and teaching our kids in a new way. The list goes on and on. Product shelf lives are shrinking at a rapid pace. New bright shiny objects capture the consumer attention faster than a speeding bullet. The masses will flock and cast aside what they once loved and cherished in favor of the new promised life-altering product. Blink and the next attraction will be on the horizon. We already know our future if we don’t continually reinvent ourselves. This concept does not stop at products; it extends into who you are, and what you want to be. Look around at your co-workers, family, and friends. How many of them are doing jobs they are classically trained to do?  Are they highly skilled at their job or do their skills reside in a different area of expertise?  Are they satisfied and happy? Chances are, these people are like most of the people I encounter every day. They are playing a role in their organization in order to survive, not thrive. We can live a deeply meaningful life by continually reinventing ourselves. Just like products run their course, so do roles we play in life.  We know our current role will come to an end. Will we be ready when our new role emerges? Will it provide the deep personal meaning we are looking for? We know everything we need to know right now to make a reasonable guess as to where things are headed. Are you ready to...

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Reactive Action is a Hope Strategy

Posted by on Mar 8, 2011 in Featured | 0 comments

Whether we are talking about self-improvement or implementing a new product line, one thing is true, action is required.   If we don’t take action, then we are left with hope as a strategy.  Relying on hope is like standing on a rickety old three-legged chair expecting not to land on an ER stretcher. Much of the action that takes place in the world is knee jerk reaction. This means we are already playing catch-up before we even begin.  We attempt to solve or overcome some problem without an eye on the larger overriding issues of the day. Reactive action is a hope strategy filled with endless cycles of running in circles while choking on clouds of meaningless dust. Warthogs are instinctively reactive animals. They have a keen ability to sniff out trouble and within a moments notice flee the scene. Moments into their reactive dusty sprint, they forget why they are running and stop cold in their tracks.   The same thing commonly occurs in business. We quickly react to a competitor’s action and just as fast deviate off our course to address something that may or may not impact our business. More importantly, this over reaction takes us further from who we are and what we are offering our customers. Don’t be a warthog unless you like running in circles. The way out of this dusty spiral is to get aligned with an Action Road Map. Ideation – Big picture idea, structured action steps for achieving Why – Why is this idea important? To you? To the people you serve? Connect – Emotionally connect your audience to your idea Action – Activate and empower your audience to take action At a high level, this seems very rudimentary and that may be so. Before you completely dismiss this as more of the same, ask yourself a simple question. Why am I living in such a reactionary world? I promise you, the answer is not as simple as you think it is. Solutions are simple. People make them complicated. Need further proof, click here to find an unbelievably complex simple one-page Action Road Map. I told you people make solutions complicated. Do you want to learn more about how to apply these concepts to you life and your business? Send me an e-mail at  info@consultmcgraw.com...

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