We teach our athletes to celebrate every touchdown, foul shot, or at bat. Think about that for a minute. Even if the game can’t be won, our athletic teams practice a philosophy of celebrating each win. Why don’t we translate that same philosophy to our relationships and careers?
Why is there a gap between athletics and other careers in how we approach daily work? Sometimes businesses fail to honor good work as it is expected and “part of the job”. But when our teams score touchdowns or hit home runs we cheer even though it is that team and athlete’s “job” to play the game.
What if we coached our employees and co-workers to celebrate the same way a team runs to the end zone after a touchdown? How would our careers be different?
To be clear, I’m not talking about end zone dances or high-fives or head-butts in your office. There can be a personalized version of that same intent though. There is an advantage to any team to cheering each other on. What is your version of that in your daily life and career? What would it take to celebrate each win? – www.rhoadscoaching.com
Aristotle is credited with stating the Greek philosophy that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. As human beings we see and assign value and meaning to the wholeness of something.
We have evidence that this philosophy is true.
If we take all of my parts and spread them out on a table, each part is valuable, but something is lost in trying to reassemble my parts. The spark that creates my life is lost and is greater than each of the individual pieces of me.
From a different angle, you can my car apart and spread it out on a table and then put it back together. If I know what I am doing (or have help), it will still work! The tires and engine of my car have value. But the running, functioning vehicle is much more valuable to me. We assign value and meaning in the mobility and image we present driving down the road in a healthy car.
We have been to rock concerts or athletic events where the energy of the crowd transforms the event into something bigger than individual part of the event. Those are the concerts and competitive events we remember the most.
Just like any other skill or trait, this value of the whole can be developed (a new car is much more valuable to us than an old car).
So, if we are greater than the sum of our parts and this wholeness can be developed, where in your life is there value in developing this wholeness? What parts can be grown and increased? How will you notice that wholeness? – www.rhoadscoaching.com
Internal Considering is the concept of spending time and energy in an internal conversation with yourself at the expense of being present in the external world.
We ALL fight internal considering and it appears in MANY shapes and forms.
Should I look for a new job?
Do I look ok in these clothes?
Are the kids safe at school?
If I have this tough conversation, will it backfire?
Should I ask her out?
The reality is that Internal Considering wastes a tremendous amount of time and energy as there is typically no resolution to the internal conversation. We stay stuck in that loop.
What topics do you spend time and energy obsessing about? What keeps you stuck in that loop? What is preventing you from moving forward toward a decision or resolution?
The solution to Internal Considering is External Considering. Who, what, and where are the people and things that can help you decide? Looking outward for a solution breaks the loop and helps move out of that internal block. – www.rhoadscoaching.com
If you remember back to your high school literature class (or maybe a world history class) the Greek Oracle of Delphi’s mantra was to ‘Know Thyself’. In the same era , Socrates admonished his critics with the idea that “an unexamined life is a life not lived”.
So why do you care? – For some of us high school literature was a long time ago and something we only wanted to survive.
The only person you will encounter in EVERY SINGLE thought, conversation, conflict, celebration, failure, etc. is yourself. There is an inherent advantage in knowing yourself well as you engage the rest of the world. So have you taken the time to get to know yourself better?
What are your values?
Do you know what are you most afraid?
How are you most conflicted?
When are you most joyful? What prevents that?
What is your most proud of?
Your biggest regret?
What is your purpose?
In taking time to ‘know thyself’ better you are able to see the assets and liabilities you bring to each conversation and task you face. You have been given a task to develop yourself. Knowing what you have and where you need to grow creates meaning and purpose in your daily life.
If you are struggling to figure out who you are and what you are about (or you know someone who is in this situation), have them give me a call or send an email. I would be happy to help them discover what makes them unique and how they fit into the world. – www.rhoadscoaching.com
What is your purpose? It is an interesting question and one that is sometimes difficult to answer. In looking back at the last year of posts, almost all of the topics I have posted point in some way toward defining purpose. It is a foundational piece of who we are as individuals, what I believe about how the world works, and the bedrock of my coaching practice.
We all have a purpose!
A reason to be here.
Have you explored what your purpose is? Do you know your natural strengths and talents? Have you looked at how these fit together with your learned skills and experiences? With how these fit together with your values, priorities, and vision? All of these are markers that point toward your purpose!
You have a roll to fill in the world around you and the world needs you to fill it! How will you know if you are living your purpose? – www.rhoadscoaching.com
As a small child you were given a super power. At some point early on you starting asking WHY. The question of why allowed you to develop a sense of meaning in the world. Your young brain craved the value of finding meaning!
These questions of WHY help us to understand (everything). Greater understanding adds value. The more value, the more meaning. The more meaning, the more fulfilling. So have you pointed the question of WHY at yourself lately? Why do you do the things you do? By asking this question again and again (the same way that little kid would not stop asking without a meaningful answer), we are able to remind ourselves of the purpose and meaning of the tasks of each day. There is a completely legitimate answer of why you get up before dawn to sit in traffic to earn a living for you and your family (you just need to remember)!
Drilling down into the layers of WHY we do the things we do adds meaning and purpose to the tasks of our lives. Take some time to peel back the layers and remind yourself WHY. – www.rhoadscoaching.com
Being creative is a vital part of being human. We need it. It is an important for us to make something – to create.
In her writing and research, Brene Brown talks about how painful it was for her to reconnect to her creativity. She gives the example of taking a gourd painting class and the shame and perfectionism that paralyzed her to the point of not even being able to put the brush onto the surface of the gourd. She also recounts the significant benefit to her daily life of being able to overcome that paralysis. By being creative she was adding meaning and purpose to her daily life.
There are nearly an infinite number of ways to be creative. Think of the number stores we have that sell crafting material, instruments, gardening supplies, dance lessons, drawing and painting supplies – on and on and on… There are as many ways to be creative as there are people to think of them.
What makes a task creative? There has to be an element of WANTING to do something instead of NEEDING or being required to. Also an element of getting lost in the task and ENJOYING what is being done. It might be hard work, but it is FUN too!
I’ve written before of the need to reduce negativity. If there is ONE thing we can do to improve our lives it is to reduce the negative thoughts and words we use toward each other and ourselves. So how to do that? The simplest way to start is to practice seeing the good things that already exist around us. How? By making the request of “Tell Me Something Good!”
The guidelines are simple, find one thing in the last seven days that is positive. It could be personal or professional. It could be a small thing or some significant event. But it has to be about you (no cheating and using your kids making dean’s list two semesters ago)! Once you have found something… Tell someone!
This can be used privately for journaling and documenting the good in our lives. It can be used as an ice-breaker or to set the tone for a meeting. I have used this tool in business meetings and small group work as a practice and it works! Once the group has been trained, they come to meetings prepared to share ideas. Suddenly there is something to celebrate at every meeting! By focusing for a few minutes each day on the positive things going on around us, the negativity gets pushed back!
Having trouble finding one good thing to start? You aren’t alone. Just like every other skill or talent, creating something different takes practice. If you don’t use it, it will disappear into the background. Counteracting negativity starts with observing the positive aspects of life that are already there. Tell Me Something Good! – www.rhoadscoaching.com
Fear is a basic human emotion. It serves a purpose and we would not be able to survive without it. What level of fear do you live with though? Is it dramatic? Is it chronic? How often do we spend any amount of time and attention understanding our fear?
Part of the mythology we have of Winston Churchill is his description of the imaginary big black dog that came to embody the sum of his fears. In learning to not run away from his fear, he imagined his fears as a giant terrifying dog that sat staring at him as he sat in his chair by the fire. The more he tried to pretend the dog wasn’t there or to chase it away the more aggressive the dog became. Only when he accepted the fear as real and valuable would the dog relax and simply be present with him. By observing the dog and trying to understand it his fears abated.
We spend tremendous amounts of time and energy avoiding or denying our fear. In order to resolve our fear it must first be understood. What are you afraid of? We all have instinctual fears (ex, snakes, spiders, large predators, falling from heights). Our DNA knows to watch out for certain physical dangers. But what are YOU personally fearful of? Being alone? Being left behind? Failing? Not being perfect? Succeeding (yes, fear of success is a real thing)? Until you are able to understand where your fear comes from it is the shadow under your bed that is imagined to be more of a threat than it actually is. Take some time and simply observe your fear. Understanding our fear is the key to reducing it. There is a benefit to letting that big black dog be present and safe in the room with you. – www.rhoadscoaching.com
As You Like It, Act II, Scene VII).
This sentiment is one of Shakespeare’s most famous lines (and has always been one of my favorite quotes). What I didn’t realize until I sat down to write this post is that when he wrote it around 1599 it wasn’t a new idea. It wasn’t even an original idea when the ancient Greeks were writing it into their plays in the first century. There is something inherently human about seeing ourselves on the stage of some grand play. Why does that resonate with us so much?
What are the roles you play in your life (there are more than one!)?
Sometimes we are the lead in our own story and sometimes you play a supporting role in someone else’s scene. Do you get upset when you play a minor role, or do you shrink away from the spotlight being on you when it is your time to shine?
If we are all in this production together, who wrote this story? There is meaning and purpose in telling a story. What is the purpose of your story embedded in our collective story?
We are actors and actresses here on the stage. Who is this play being performed for? What do you believe?
If you are truly a performer in this play and your role can change (and it does), then the roles you play are not who you truly are (you are an actor or actress, not the hero or villain you are creating).
Finally, in the roles you have been given are you putting your heart and soul into each performance (regardless of the size of the role)? Every production needs its players to meet their full potential. Where are you phoning in a performance? Where do you need to step up you game? You have been given a role. The world needs your performance! – www.rhoadscoaching.comfinding meaning and purpose in daily life