The Most Important Thing to Be Grateful For

Kit Night artist

Look at the familiar with fresh eyes – Kit Night

As most of you know, gratitude can play a key role in our having a satisfying, successful life.

It’s one of the reasons I am grateful that I started my newsletter on Wednesdays–writing about gratitude is almost a requirement on this day before our Thanksgiving holiday.

This year I have been pondering the idea of starting to give thanks at the source.

The source I am talking about is ourselves. We have to focus on our own nurturing in order to create and sustain a healthy body, mind, and spirit. read on>>

One Sure Way to Bring Joyfulness to Thanksgiving

acorn2 free DSC02129We all love Thanksgiving, right?  It’s such a great holiday that even people who did not grow up here in the United States typically embrace Thanksgiving.

And, the day itself can have it’s challenges and stresses–too much to do, at one time, with lots of cooks in the kitchen. And the kitchen is hot.

Here’s my request for each and every one of you: find a way to remind yourself to pause for a moment to think DEEPLY of the things you are grateful for. Go beyond the usual things like family, friends, pumpkin pie, and cable TV.

What about deep abiding love that you have worked hard for?  Or a connection with a long lost friend? Or running water that comes out of the tap clean, fresh and the exact temperature you would like it to be?

Your reminder can be setting an alarm on your phone (or regular clock!), wearing a special piece of jewelry or sweater so that you will pause when you notice it, or a doorway you walk through, or a smile on someone’s face.  If you make a plan to have something trigger you to pause, chances are that you will.

Then allow that pause to resonate with the core of your humanity, to fully feel Joyfulness.

The Pineapple Theory of Creating Joyful Work

You can create JOY in the "stuff you gotta do"

iStock_1096099_Sm smiling pineappleI love my work. I am lucky that I get to do stuff I like most of the day.  The people I work with treat me well. I hope they think I treat them well.

And, there are parts of my day that I do not enjoy.  Since one of my main focuses in work (and life) is Creating Joyful Work, I spent some time pondering this potential conundrum.

It’s kind of like eating pineapple. I LOVE pineapple, especially when I can find a really fresh one with lots of flavor.*  Then there’s the process of cutting off the rind and getting all the tough bits out without wasting too much of the delicious fruit, when all I want to do is sit down to a large bowl of luciousness.

Successful Executives Are Not Nice!

Guest post from Todd Ordal - CEO Advisor

The Seven Mantras Of Successful Leadership: #1Todd Ordal CEO Advisor Coach

The following is an excerpt from Todd Ordal’s soon to be released book, “Never Kick a Cow Chip on a Hot Day: Real Lessons for Real CEOs and Those Who Want to Be” from Morgan James Publishing.  I am blessed to be colleagues with Todd and the recipient of his insights, ideas and leadership genius–all couched in an amazing sense of humor. I am looking forward the whole book.

In Chapter One he explores “the seven mantras of successful leadership.” Here is the first.

Mantra # 1: Successful Executives Are Not Nice!

From the minute we engage with other humans (and even pets!) our parents tell us, “Be nice!” This is intended to be a catchall for eliminating behaviors like hitting, screaming, crying, or anything that makes the other people in the sandbox feel bad.

As we get older, we’re rewarded for being nice. When my kids were in elementary school, their teachers frequently complimented them for being nice, as in, “He hasn’t turned in any of his homework and has failed the past three tests, but he’s such a nice boy!” Nice is a hat hanger, a fall back sort of position when all else fails. But when it comes to the business of leadership, you are going to quickly see that nice isn’t always the best way to carry yourself.

Don’t Should on Yourself

personal-growthI love this phrase because really… who is the hardest on me?  Me!

Since I heard this phrase and started thinking about the things I “should do” versus the things that are true to my core values and not a result of my programming, I realize how often I am doing, or even thinking, things that are not in alignment with who I am.

In addition, when I asked myself where that program came from, I usually made that up too, then blame the other person so I don’t have to take responsibility for being so hard on myself.

Ahh, the joys of the human psyche.  I am sure there are more levels to this, but for now it’s Friday afternoon and I am just going to focus on letting go of the shoulds.

What about you?  Are you hard on yourself?  What programs are you ready to let go of?

5 Minutes Each Day Will Accelerate Your Life!

Your "One Big Thing" Can Take Just 5 Minutes

raised-hands-iStock_5414695_XSm-300x199Every day do One Big Thing.

Here’s the catch, OBT usually takes just a few minutes! “Big” refers to getting outside of our comfort zone, not to taking a long time or investing a lot of resources.

Here’s how I started. To stay focused on the projects and tasks we deemed important, my colleague Todd and I send an email to each other at the end of the day. The email states how well we did in terms of planning our day and sticking to our plan; then finishes with whether we did OBT that day.