Three Must-Have Elements for Effective Leadership in Any Aspect of Your Life

Whether you want to grow your capacity for leadership in your career, at home, as a parent, as a mentor or even as a friend, you need a foundation upon which to lead. In fact, when we are not successful as leaders, it’s because we lack one of these three elements.

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Resilience: What does it really take?

ResilienceWe all have aspirations for something.

Even if we haven’t translated it yet into a specific goal, there’s something we want more of, less of or different.

It is the ultimate dichotomy I think of our humanness: We resist change and yet change is what we crave.

The underlying conflict in this seems to be that we want the change we want and nothing else.

We do not want to have to put change to work; we only want change that works for us. And we believe we are the best judge of what that might be.

But the best change quite often masquerades as something else, something perhaps we don’t recognize for its true potential.

That’s the essence of resilience. Being able to recognize opportunity in whatever comes our way. Once we’ve made the decision for what we want, then everything gets put to work to accomplish that. It’s one of the principal lessons I learned from Napoleon Hill’s work, Think and Grow Rich. The decision begins everything. Without a decision, there is no touchstone.

What does it really take then to go from decision to done? What does resilience need in order to work? From studying those that are repeatedly successful it would appear that there are three things that happen with resilience.

First is that everything becomes a resource and gets put to work. You see things differently. You see them through the lens of possibility. You become resourceful instead of just waiting on resources.

Second is a steadfast sense of resolve. Jim Rohn tells the story of a young girl that when asked to define resolve explained that it was a promise you make to yourself. When things go awry, as we know they will, it is our resolve that keeps us on track and moving forward.

The third element is not just what we get in the end, it’s what we continuously produce and that is results. Results are the most effective way to light our path. They show us which direction is working. They guide us along the way. That is why we have to measure from the first step, so we can harness the power of those results, adjusting our sails as we go.

What it really takes is not just one thing, in fact it’s really not a thing at all. When you think about it, what it takes is us. We make the decision, we become resourceful, we resolve to persevere and we follow the best results until we get there.

What is it you want? Decide. Start there. Let it begin.

Live (decide) today like you want tomorrow to be. Live (decide) well.

Resiliency: 5 Gifts of Change

Laughman_Oct 2015_Article 2_ChangeWhatever it is we experience in life, the value of it is whatever we choose it to be.

Does it matter? Is it helpful? Does it cause concern? Are we happy about it? Sad? Angry? Afraid? These are all natural responses. The key is recognizing they are also choices.

Our attitude toward change shows up long before the choice is made and in almost all cases, to at least some degree is dictating the outcome.

In his book, Jumpstart Your Thinking, Dr. John C. Maxwell teaches that our attitude acts like the “advance person” of our true selves. In other words, it shows up before we do, long before the main event. Over time it becomes almost instinctive.

It would seem then that this is an important concept to focus on when we consider where we want to grow. Do we have an attitude about change that is pre-empting success?

How do we change our attitude? In the same writings, Dr. Maxwell offers this commentary about the role it plays: “It is the librarian of our past, the speaker of our present, and the prophet of our future.”  I found that statement to hold the key. If our attitude is the speaker of our present, to change our attitude it would seem to mean we must first change how we speak about it.

As I surveyed some of the changes in my life where I initially struggled, I found five specific gifts I received once I allowed myself to grow through vs. just go through whatever I was experiencing. Seeing the gifts allowed my internal conversation and attitude to change.

#1- New People

My life has been richly blessed from expanding my personal circles. In many cases, those people were introduced to my life in the course of change.

#2- New Places

As a writer, place has been somewhat of a conundrum for me. We like the comfort of our “creative space” and can even begin to rely on its trappings. That was certainly the case for me. But when the creative flow stalls, quite often it is a change of place that allows it to begin streaming again. Once I realized that going to new places was a core fuel for inspiration, my attitude toward them shifted.

#3- New Skills

Any time we encounter change there is almost always something to learn. That can be a daunting road block if we are afraid we may not be able to acquire that skill. The key is recognizing that everything we know at some point was unknown to us. Everything we can do today, at some point we did not know how to do. And with new skills comes new opportunities.

#4- New Ideas

Change is a wonderful stimulus. What we consider (or reject) changes based on new information. We find that we have greater agility for transferring knowledge and skill. We are able to cross-pollinate our understanding of how we work best.

#5- Possibilities

This is of course my favorite because it’s the culmination of everything else. It’s the pinnacle of success when it comes to real change. When we integrate new people, places, skills and ideas into our strategies, the possibilities exponentially grow.

We can change our relationship with change by changing our attitude toward it. We change our attitude by changing our perspective and how we view it, how we speak about it. What new people can I meet and serve? What new places can I experience? What new skills can I acquire and master? What new ideas can this generate? How does this expand the possibilities for my life and work?

In summary: What does this make possible? Once we embrace that question, we begin to master the power of true resiliency.

Live (change) today like you want tomorrow to be. Live (change) well.

Do you struggle with resilience? 3 warning signs to consider

It’s easy to say that we are resilient. It’s much more challenging to live resiliently. It is one of the most important skills we need to develop. But all too often we wait until we need it to determine if we’ve got it. The reality is that it doesn’t work that way.

Like any skill, it has to be developed over time and begins with our mindset. How we perceive our world will determine how we interact with it.

That is the core essence of true resilience. We stop responding to our world and start interacting with it. We put the energy of what is happening around us to work. We harness that energy and create new opportunities. It is what I have come to think of as moving from powerless effort (responding) to effortless power (resilience).

Recently I have been part of some discussions around resilience and how we develop it. The initial questions focused on how we could determine if it is a skill we have honed or not. After all, it’s not something you can always measure or see until after it has been employed. From those conversations, we determined that there are some warning signs that may be indicators that we need to strengthen that muscle.

Here are the top three:

#1- A higher commitment to the plan than to the result.

It can be dangerous to become overly attached to the road map. After all, roads close and things change. But the end goal is still the end goal. Adjusting the sails is far better than ignoring that the course needs correction.

#2- A driving need to understand the cause of something in order to assign blame, even (or especially) if it’s to yourself.

Things happen. The cause is most likely irrelevant once it happens. The true forward course is not assigning responsibility for why it happened but rather taking responsibility for what to do from there. What does this make possible? Take responsibility for that and it shifts to opportunity thinking.

#3- Your goal list is continuously littered with casualties that don’t seem to ever cross the finish line.

When we find a trend line in something, it means there is a systemic issue causing a particular result. When the trend we see is unfinished work or unrealized goals, it usually means that we are not able to see our way through disruptions, delays or even simple distractions. By analyzing the points where we falter, we can see where we need to shore up our resiliency muscle and put intelligent creativity to work.

A commitment to seeing the possibilities around us naturally develops our personal resiliency. Our life lens is trained to see opportunities for growing and giving in every situation. In a world where we are faced every day with uncertainty, we can thrive knowing that what is uncertain leaves room for infinite creativity.

What if the glass half empty is also half full? What if it’s both and ready for more?

Live today like you want tomorrow to be. Live well.

8 empowering beliefs to increase happiness

8 Empowering Beliefs to increase your happiness

Your experiences are shaped by your thinking. By adopting some of the beliefs below you can empower yourself to be happy. Even obstacles have a value when you can see it. You can develop convictions that will help you to feel happier and achieve more, regardless of the situation.

I am blessed

I am blessed

Consider these empowering beliefs that you can start using today to transform your life through the power of positive thinking.

  1. I understand my potential. You can achieve amazing results when you put your mind to it. Feel excited about reaching your true potential. I hereby grant you permission to let yourself be ALL that you can be.
  2. I count my blessings. List each thing that you have to be grateful for. Remember to include the smaller items, like warm socks, instagram or tart cranberriesExpressing your appreciation reminds you of how rich you are. I think you can find more of these each day if you put your attention on it,
  3. I learn from mistakes. You can make setbacks work for you by focusing on the lessons that they contain. Flubbing one job interview can teach you how to ace the next one. As a performing artist I cannot get upset over one word I forgot at the last concert. My mastery come in the form of how resilient I am and how well I recover.
  4. I find meaning in adversity. Tough times can be the most rewarding phase of your life. Know that you can emerge from any challenge with greater wisdom and courage. I hate to say it but that old adage of “that which does not kill you makes you stronger” has a tiny bit of truth to it! Look back at the obstacles you’ve already overcome, and reassure yourself that you can handle what’s ahead.
  5. I embrace change. Accept that life is a series of changes. Focus on the present moment, and prepare yourself to adapt to whatever circumstances come your way. If all else fails… practice this mantra: “change is good, change is good, change is good!”
  6. I dream big. Expand your wish list. Do not play small if you want big results. Setting demanding but attainable goals gives you adventures to look forward to each day.
  7. I practice forgiveness. Lighten your load by clearing away any resentment you’re holding onto from the past. Set reasonable boundaries while you respond with compassion when others disappoint you. While you are at it, Pardon yourself too. If you are like me you can be pretty rough on yourself at times and while that fuels you to get better you do want to temper it with a some of that golden compassion you tend to grant others.
  8. I give generously. Sharing your blessings makes you more powerful and joyful. Volunteer in your community and speak kindly to each person you meet today. Buy coffee for your co-workers or give your receptionist a flower.

Dream big and stay positive. You can achieve all of the goals you set out to achieve.

CLICK HERE to view VIDEO AFFIRMATION MEDITATION  “I am empowered”

Please let me know if I can be of any assistance to you or your business.

I look forward to hearing from you.

aeriol

www.askaeriol.com

Your Changing Nest: Are you ready for what’s next?

Change is a part of life. We all know that. But do we champion change and actively put it to work in our lives? Sometimes we can be so busy responding to the many changes outside of our control that we lose sight of how strategic change can actually be.

Empty NestIn thinking about a practical example for this, I thought about where change can be the most disruptive, especially for women. One place that is true is our “nest”. Whether those changes are planned and even celebrated does not mean they are not disruptive in ways we didn’t count on or struggle with as we move forward in our lives. Our changing nest – and for what we’ll be talking about here, our empty nest.

Our children growing up: heading to college, moving away, getting married. It doesn’t matter who you are – this can be a very unsettling time. Our whole lives can seem to shift. No matter how much we’re celebrating, within that change there can still be a sense of loss.

Let’s talk about why that might be and break it down. I call it the 3 R’s of our nest dynamic:

Relationships – Responsibilities – Resources

In my own life I can see this so clearly in hindsight (that rearview mirror!). There is a relationship dynamic that definitely shifts. Our children are always our children, no matter how old they are. But they become someone else as well. They become another adult, even in some ways, a peer. That relationship can bring a very different energy.

When we think about responsibilities, quite often we’re really talking about purpose. We’re so used to living our daily life at every level based on being responsible for their daily life. When that responsibility shifts, it can bring with it a loss of purpose. What will we do with ourselves?

And those resources! Our time, money and energy! When the priorities begin to shift, we often fail to recognize that how we leverage these resources also needs to shift.

It is here where we begin to learn and embrace the POWER of Permission, Perspective and Possibilities. Every change is an ending and a beginning. Every time our life progresses to a new season it brings the ending of something we know so that we can replace it with possibilities that were not there before. Think about this in terms of actual seasons. We can’t have winter and summer at the same time in the same place. And there are things that are unique to each of them. So it is true in our lives.

The truth is though that we may not want a season to end and that can be our first hurdle. To get through to the point of permission, perspective and possibility we have to first allow ourselves to grieve for what is left behind. How we do that is as individual as our fingerprints. But it is essential. The most effective approach for this is quite simple: Gratitude. Once we commit to seeing everything through the lens of grace it becomes much easier to live from a point of gratitude. This isn’t just a platitude and I also don’t think it’s valid to say that we have to be grateful for everything. It’s not realistic. But we can always be grateful for something. And that’s the difference. Focus on what we can be grateful for and the rest becomes much easier to carry.

There are also some other very practical things that we can do that will help us re-feather our nest we will cover in part two of our discussion. I’ve come to think of them as life practices or personal strategies. What makes them powerful is the fact that they are a part of our everyday life.

The key question is always this: What does this make possible? That is the essence of resilience and how we move with grace to what we create next in and with our lives.

Live (change) today like you want tomorrow to be. Live (change) well!

Exciting New Book Reveals How To Have The Life of Your Dreams!

front cover for kiindle

Choose Bliss: The new paradigm in Business.

 

Choose Bliss: New Book Proves a Life of Enduring Joy & Contentment *IS* Possible. It’s a Paradigm Changer Critics Hail “Authentic & Powerful”

 Masterfully crafted from the life, experiences and wisdom of Moneeka Sawyer, ‘Choose Bliss: The Power and Practice of Joy and Contentment’ empowers readers to embrace the fact that bliss isn’t circumstantial, but is rather a constant state of being that anyone can thrive in. Through both deeply-personal vignettes and a host of practical exercises, Sawyer walks readers through learning how to never settle for “just good enough” and how creating true power and prosperity can be as easy as a few simple mindset shifts…

 Mountain View, CA – Those who know Moneeka Sawyer often regard her as one of the happiest, most joyous and positive people they’ve ever met. It’s far from a front; Sawyer is truly blissful at all times and feels totally in control of every decision she makes.

It’s a unique yet totally transformative state of mind underpinned by a series of foundational “bliss practices” that anyone can deploy. In her new book, Sawyer explains how you too can be as happy and content as she is.

‘Choose Bliss: The Power and Practice of Joy and Contentment’ will leave readers reveling in their new life steeped with opportunity, positivity and bliss that goes far and beyond being a buzzword. It’s a book about the power to choose, and how these choices can easily create a reality more blissful than anyone believed possible.

Book Synopsis:

This book is about your power to choose. It is a paradigm changer that will transform your view of your life, the world around you, and what is truly possible. Filled with thought-provoking concepts, it will teach you simple bliss practices you can implement immediately and short exercises to integrate bliss into your life forever. The tools in this book have proven successful time and time again. So, from this day forward, you don’t have to settle for good enough.

“The issue is that most people fall into a state of complacency, creating a vicious circle where they live robotically and become frustrated when they’re seldom happy,” explains Sawyer. “My book and my entire philosophy will amplify anyone’s inner light and rekindle the love in their heart. After all, don’t we all deserve to live surrounded by bliss? Feeling happy, strong and free is so empowering that it’s almost hard to put into words. This book will help anyone identify the mental, physical and spiritual adversity that’s holding them back and then inspire them to emerge victorious into a life they have only ever dreamed of.”

Continuing, “I want people to remember that they have a choice about every single thought, movement and action they make in life. When you understand how to make each of these decisions with a continuing life of bliss as the goal, amazing things begin to happen. Just ask the people I’ve helped who have proven first-hand that my methods are rock-solid and proven.”

Since its release, the book has garnered a consistent string of five-star reviews. For example, H. Blanchard comments, “I’ve read a lot of self-help books and this one feels different – more authentic – because Moneeka shares her own life journey and how she overcame problems in a way that I could relate to. The main thing I will take away is that changes are not linear and you don’t have to take action A, then B, then C etc. you can have bliss now even though you haven’t worked your way through to Z yet. I also found that as I read she left cues for the forthcoming chapters that my subconscious started working on so that when I got to the chapter on that subject e.g. Gratitude, I had already started working it into my daily routine naturally.”

James R. Cichoracki adds, “Moneeka’s insights and her compelling stories (from her challenging childhood where she was relentlessly bullied to her hard choice a few years ago to not become a mother) demonstrate how deeply devoted she is to the amazing principles of choosing bliss no matter what her circumstances. I found myself underlining and making notes of things I want to incorporate into my life to live the joy-filled life that Moneeka clearly embodies every day. This book is full of gems!”

‘Choose Bliss: The Power and Practice of Joy and Contentment’, from Silver Torch Publishing¸ is available now: http://amzn.to/2axqguL.

For more information and resources, visit the author’s official website: http://coreblisslife.com.

The Power of Your Own Beliefs

The power of your own beliefs.

Almost everything we know is secondhand and based on belief. Even when it comes to our experiences firsthand, recent psychological research shows that our perceptions of our own experiences are often unreliable.

What’s wrong with believing what we want? What’s wrong with having inaccurate memories and seeing experiences the way we want to see them and not knowing for sure what’s certain or not? Well, the reality is that there is a lot wrong with these false beliefs we keep telling ourselves.

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First Steps Using Feng Shui

Even though the Western New Year has started, it’s not too late to change, improve and intentionally direct the Harmony Through Conflictspecific type of energy you want for the New Year. This is especially true if you use the Chinese New Year, which varies and occurs in either January or February. In fact, there are so many aspects about our Western year-end and beginning of the next year it is impossible for me personally to start on the right track. I celebrate and use both dates to set the best energy for the coming year.

Here are a few tips for a couple of the areas I mentioned in the first part of this six-part series.

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What Does a Funeral Have to Do With Your Business?

Close your eyes. Imagine you’re in a room filled with people. You can see them, but they can’t see you. Some people "WHAT?" Key on Keyboard (questions explanation help support how)you recognize and some you don’t. Every one is quiet and looks very solemn. What is going on, you ask? What is everyone doing here? But, no one can hear you, remember?

Finally, someone gets up and goes to the front of the room and begins to speak. Wait a minute. It’s someone you know. Someone you know very well from your business. What is he/she doing here? You wonder, why does it sound like he’s/she’s giving a eulogy?  Because he/she is giving a eulogy! You’re at a funeral?!?! Wait. Who died? 

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