THE DAY AFTER THE VICTORY

Plan - to get better

“The Day After The Victory”

I spent Sunday, December 18 at my son, Kevin’s church, No Limits Church (NLC), in Brooklyn NY. His pastor, Ken Bobe, invited me to come and facilitate a leadership workshop at 8:30am, and teach during their 10am service. I accepted, and visualized a successful and blessed outcome…

But what I experienced that day surpassed all my expectations! The people of NLC blessed me more than anything I ever did… Their warm, welcoming spirit, hospitality and genuine love for each other was awesome to see… NLC has a desire to become better leaders and positively impact the people they serve & BEYOND! Pastor Ken is masterfully leading them and I believe they will reach AND surpass their goals! Thank you, NLC! Gracias por todo!

The time spent with them has also inspired me to resurrect this blog and start posting again!

With that in mind — as I reflected on the day and how God just put things in place for ALL of us to be blessed; I have two important principles to share with No Limits Church OR anyone else peeking at this post! 🙂

Principle #1 is: “You’re most vulnerable the day after the victory.”

Principle #2“Truth unrehearsed is soon forgotten.” Let me explain…

The “victory” I refer to; in the case of NLC, is that you heard teaching that impacted your life, exposed some areas you need to work on… you even heard something that seemed aimed directly at YOU… That “victory” was followed by thoughts of, “wow, I have some things to work on and improve in my life…right? Principle #1 holds a simple yet profound warning for those engaged in the life pursuit of excellence: ACT ON THOSE THOUGHTS IMMEDIATELY!

If you don’t place value on what you heard and actively process it, rehearse it and find a way to IMMEDIATELY apply it to your life — you will soon forget it and miss an opportunity to grow!! (“Truth unrehearsed is SOON forgotten”…) You become vulnerable to falling back into bad habits, lack of discipline and a “roller coaster” life…

I encourage you to take some time and write down the “bold print” – the things that stuck out to you, and make a plan to implement them in your life. If you can’t do it RIGHT NOW, then make an appointment with yourself — i.e., make an “meeting with me” in Outlook or iCal… I’m serious folks — use technology to YOUR advantage.

Make the time, and attack those areas in your life that need to be improved. Persist through setbacks, persevere through your own mistakes and ask God for the desire and power to become a better leader.

If you are disciplined and do this, you will reap great rewards!!    

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Self-Discipline In A Leader

Self-Discipline: So important in a Leader

 

As we continue on the journey of learning the mindset of a leader, I have found that ALL great leaders have mastered the art of self-discipline in their lives. Without it, a leader cannot be successful!

In the book. “The Way of the Leader”author Donald G. Krause, talks about the importance of self-discipline in the life of a leader. Here are some excerpts to stimulate your thinking on this important subject and hopefully inspire you to ACTION:

SELF-DISCIPLINE:

  • A leader tends to live by a set of rules or principles that he determines are appropriate for him and acceptable to his constituents (followers or team). A leader does not need external motivation to ensure performance.  
  • Self-discipline is the basic ingredient of self-control and the foundation of self-respect. If an executive lacks self-discipline, self-control, or self-respect, even if he is the person in charge he will not, in fact, be the leader.
  • Self-discipline means; at the most personal level, means that you do not attempt to deceive yourself. Always be careful what you think and do, but be particularly careful when you believe you are alone.Practice self-restraint in your private life. Remember a person’s opinion of himself eventually shows in his face and is reflected in his outward behavior. A true leader exercises self-discipline through controlling his thoughts and action even when he believes that no one else can see him.
  • An effective leader exhibits a poised, self-assured, direct, and controlled demeanor under all circumstances. A controlled manner bestows powerful competitive advantages.
  • Above all, an effective leader is dignified without being arrogant. Arrogance comes from ignorance and lack of self-confidence. When a person displays arrogance he is confirming that he knows very little about true dignity and more importantly, very little about true leadership.
  • Few people will admit their own failures and ever fewer will acknowledge that the true cause of failure lies within themselves. But a person who practices self-discipline and continuously develops his level of skill seldom fails in the long run. 
  • An effective leader worries about his own shortcomings and seeks improvement from within. When a person demands excellence from others, but never corrects problems within himself, he cannot lead.
  • Study widely; inquire sincerely; adhere steadfastly to your principles; consider carefully your experiences, what works and what does not work for you. It is in doing these things that you will discover the meaning of excellence. Moreover, find the best leaders and emulate their methods. In this way, you will also discover the meaning of leadership.
  • Excellence in leadership or anything else is not something remote or difficult to find. We need only practice self-discipline, and it (excellence) will begin to appear in our lives!

5 Tips on How To Stay Focused

FOCUS!

 

 

 

Note from Coach O: I am using this summer to work on areas of my leadership that need improving. “I am on a relentless drive for progress!”

One of the areas I need to work hard on is the ability to stay focused. I believe this ability is crucial to accomplishing my goals. During this week, I will be posting articles and quotes to help US learn to stay focused!  The following is the 1st article I came across @ lifeoptimizer.org, during my research… ENJOY!

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How to Stay Focused – 5 Tips

Note: This is a guest post from Sean Burrows of What Is Personal Growth

Often times, we find ourselves going back and forth in terms of working on our goals and our growth as human beings. We’ll go through periods where we work hard consistently everyday without ever feeling burned out, then sometimes we shift and go through periods where we stagnate and put them off for a time. Let’s be clear however, that there is a big difference between taking small breaks such as a vacation, and stagnation.

Here are 5 tips that have helped me stay focused in times when the procrastination bug starts to bite.

1. Clear All Unnecessary Distractions

A big source of stagnation is what we do in our daily lives which serve no true purpose except to distract us. If you want to stay focused on achieving your dreams, you need to find everything in your life that is distracting you from that.

Some of the big ones for me were:

Television
Video games
Poor relationships
Unhealthy food
Other people’s drama
There were many more which I had to remove from my life, and there still is, but these were the ones that were having the biggest impact. All of these were taking my focus off of my goals when I participated in them.

Now of course some distractions are extremely difficult to give up, a lot of them are very addicting. Video games and television are extremely addicting, at least they were for me. But giving them up has been a true blessing in my life. No matter how difficult it is, know that it will be worth it in the end.

2. Keep a Journal

Writing in a journal has been a profound benefit for me. What helps best is writing down my goals and also my progress. Knowing that you’re progressing is a great way to stay motivated. Who wants to keep doing something when they think all their efforts are for nothing? Often times, our growth and important steps towards our goals are overlooked or ignored. Writing down every single positive step you’ve taken towards your goals, no matter how small it may seem, will always serve as a reminder that you ARE progressing, and that reaching your goals happens one step at a time.

Write down some areas in your life and go through them. Note how you’ve improved in those areas, and what you think you could do to improve even more. Here are a few examples that I use:

Physical
Mental
Financial
Relationships
Family
Emotional
Spiritual
3. Create New Habits

When you want to move from a habit that you know is stagnating you, to one that is beneficial and empowering, the best way is to stick with it for at least 21 days. Doing this will engrave it into your personality, and you will eventually start doing it without even thinking about it. After about 21-30 days you’ll start noticing the positive changes it’s having on your life.

For example, if you want to start going to the gym, mark down in a calendar when you want to go and what time. This way you will always have something to remind you of your goal. After 21 days of not giving up, you won’t need a calendar anymore because it is now a habit.

4. Surround Yourself With People That Have Similar Goals

If you’re trying to improve your life and remove things which are preventing you from doing that, it doesn’t make much sense to hang around people who are still stuck in the things which you are trying to move on from. This one can be difficult for a lot of people. Some of us are in relationships, and have friends that we’ve known for a long time, but they may not be interested in the same goals you are. There’s nothing wrong with knowing that you’ve outgrown someone and moving on, especially if they have no interest in improving themselves.

Moving on from people which are holding you back will be a great weight lifted on your shoulders. I’ve noticed that when I move on from specific aspects of my life that are preventing me from progressing, new ones start to come into my life which help accelerate my goals. It’s like being a receiver in football. You have this defender on you running everywhere you go, preventing you from catching the ball. But after a few plays you begin to realize what you need to do to get past him, and catch the pass for a touchdown.

5. Take Breaks

As I said earlier, there is a big difference in taking some time off, and pure stagnation. Taking some time off recharges and refreshes your mind. The absolute best thing for me is going camping or hiking. Being out in nature is very calming and balancing. All the answers to my questions just seem to be answered so much easier when I’m out in nature. And I always come back with new insights and a focused mind.

(Read the entire article here)

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Coach O’s “3 Pointers”: 3 Things to Think About

  1. What are the 5 biggest distractions in your life? How can you clear them out?
  2. Take a good look at the people that surround you (your inner circle). Do they have similar goals as yours re focus? If not, after reading this you KNOW it’s time to “move on” from some people in your life….no?
  3. Breaks. Do you take them? What do you do to give yourself a break? Me? I spend time sipping lattes in Starbucks or go to a movie by myself… Make sure you have this in place & vary what you do so it’s doesn’t become mundane.
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Sean Burrows loves to learn and discover new ways to improve the quality of peoples lives. He studies personal development and health rigorously, and shares his life’s lessons, creative ideas, and healthy recipes through his blog at http://www.what-is-personal-growth.com

You can also follow Sean on Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/36burrows

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Revisit of “The Definite Dozen”

"Reach For The Summitt", by Pat Summit - Great book!

 

 

I have have mentioned before, from time to time, I like to revisit books that I’ve read before. Usually, it is a couple of years later and I am in a different place maturity & leadership-wise. During the revisit; I will always discover a “nugget” that I didn’t see before because I “see” differently than I did back then!

My most recent revisit was to the book, “Reach For The Summit”, by Pat Summitt, legendary head coach of the University of Tennessee Volunteers women’s basketball team. In this book, she outlines her “Definite Dozen” system for succeeding at whatever you do. We are going to take a look at the Definite Dozen, and I hope you find some “nuggets in the Dozens” for YOU!

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Pat Summitt: “As we get caught up in teh day-to-day matters, we sometimes forget what’s really importantto us. I like to keep the Definite Dozennearby as a reminder.”

An overview of the Definite Dozen:

1.   Respect Yourself and Others.

  • There is no such thing as self-respect without respect for others.
  • Individual success is a myth. No one succeeds by herself.
  • People who do not respect those around them will not make good team members and probably lack self-esteem themselves.
  • When you ask yourself “Do I deserve to succeed?” make sure the answer is yes.

2.   Take Full Responsibility.

  • There is no shortcut to success.
  • You can’t assume larger responsibility without taking responsibility for the small things too.
  • Being responsible sometimes means making tough, unpopular decisions.
  • Admit to and make yourself accountable for mistakes. How can you improve if you’re never wrong?

3.   Develop and Demonstrate Loyalty.

  • Loyalty is not unilateral. You have to give it to receive it.
  • The family business model is a successful one because it fosters loyalty and trust.
  • Surround yourself with people who are better than you are. Seek out quality people, acknowledge their talents, and let them do their jobs.
  • You win with people.
  • Value colleagues who tell you the truth, not just what you want to hear.

4.   Learn To Be A Great Communicator.

  • Communication eliminates mistakes.
  • Listening is crucial to good communication.
  • We communicate all the time, even when we don’t realize it. Be aware of body language.
  • Make good eye contact.
  • Silence is a form of communication, too. Sometimes less is more.

5.   Discipline Yourself So No One Else Has To.

  • Self-discpline helps you believe in yourself.
  • Group discipline produces a unified effort toward a common goal.
  • When disciplining others, be fair, be firm, be consistent.
  • Discipline helps you finish a job, and finishing is what separates excellent work from average work.

6.   Make Hard Work Your Passion.

  • Do the things that aren’t fun first, and do them well.
  • Think big, work small.
  • Plan your work and work your plan.
  • See yourself as self-employed

7.   Don’t Just Work Hard, Work Smart.

  • Success is about having the right person, in the right place, at the right time.
  • Know your strengths, weaknesses, and needs.
  • When you understand yourself and those around you, you are better able to minimize weaknesses and maximize strengths. Personality profiles help.
  • Be flexible.

8.   Put The Team Before Yourself

  • Teamwork doesn’t come naturally. It must be taught.
  • Teamwork allows common people to obtain uncommon results.
  • Not everyone is born to lead. Role players are critical to group success.
  • In group success there is individual success.

9.   Make Winning An Attitude.

  • Combine practice with belief.
  • Attitude is a choice. Maintain a positive outlook.
  • No one ever got anywhere by being negative. Confidence is what happens when you’ve done the hard work that entitles you to succeed.

10.   Be A Competitor.

  • Competition isn’t social. It separates the achievers from the avergae.
  • You can’t always be the most talented person in the room. But you can be the most competitive.
  • Influence your oipponent. By being competitive you can affect how your adversary performs.
  • There is nothing wrong with having competitive instincts. They are survivasl instincts.

11.   Change Is A Must.

  • It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts the most.
  • Change equals self-improvement. Push yourself to places you haven’t been before.
  • Take risks. You can’t steal second base with your foot on first.  

12.  Handle Success Like You Handle Failure.

  • You can’t always control what happens, but you can control how you handle it.
  • Sometimes you learn more from losing than winning. Losing forces you to reexamine.
  • It’s harder to stay on top than it is to make the climb. Continue to seek new goals.

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This is just an overview of the Definite Dozen. For more information on this intersting and effective system, buy the book here. For more information on Coach Pat Summitt, go to : http://coachsummitt.com

The Importance of Self-Discipline In A Leader

Coach Tony Dungy, known for his self-discipline.

As we continue on the journey of learning the mindset of a leader, I have found that ALL great leaders have mastered the art of self-discipline in their lives. Without it, a leader cannot be successful!

In the book. “The Way of the Leader”, author Donald G. Krause, talks about the importance of self-discipline in the life of a leader. Here are some excerpts to stimulate your thinking on this important subject and hopefully inspire you to ACTION:

SELF-DISCIPLINE:

  • A leader tends to live by a set of rules or principles that he determines are appropriate for him and acceptable to his constituents (followers or team). A leader does not need external motivation to ensure performance.  
  • Self-discipline is the basic ingredient of self-control and the foundation of self-respect. If an executive lacks self-discipline, self-control, or self-respect, even if he is the person in charge he will not, in fact, be the leader.
  • Self-discipline means; at the most personal level, means that you do not attempt to deceive yourself. Always be careful what you think and do, but be particularly careful when you believe you are alone. Practice self-restraint in your private life. Remember a person’s opinion of himself eventually shows in his face and is reflected in his outward behavior. A true leader exercises self-discipline through controlling his thoughts and action even when he believes that no one else can see him.
  • An effective leader exhibits a poised, self-assured, direct, and controlled demeanor under all circumstances. A controlled manner bestows powerful competitive advantages.
  • Above all, an effective leader is dignified without being arrogant. Arrogance comes from ignorance and lack of self-confidence. When a person displays arrogance he is confirming that he knows very little about true dignity and more importantly, very little about true leadership.
  • Few people will admit their own failures and ever fewer will acknowledge that the true cause of failure lies within themselves. But a person who practices self-discipline and continuously develops his level of skill seldom fails in the long run.
  • An effective leader worries about his own shortcomings and seeks improvement from within. When a person demands excellence from others, but never corrects problems within himself, he cannot lead.
  • Study widely; inquire sincerely; adhere steadfastly to your principles; consider carefully your experiences, what works and what does not work for you. It is in doing these things that you will discover the meaning of excellence. Moreover, find the best leaders and emulate their methods. In this way, you will also discover the meaning of leadership.
  • Excellence in leadership or anything else is not something remote or difficult to find. We need only practice self-discipline, and it (excellence) will begin to appear in our lives!