Is your comfort zone small? Grant yourself a tiny adventure

Do you ever wonder how some people embark on adventure so easily? Or embrace new opportunity?

They push themselves. Instead of staying in their PJ’s under a blanket, where it’s safe, they accept a bit of discomfort in order to grow and thrive.

We all struggle with this in various parts of our lives. No one escapes it.

Our brain is actually wired to stop us from getting outside of our comfort zone and trying new things. Read more

The Emotion Related to Everything Worthwhile

1 9.17.35 PM“Trite.” “Superficial.” OUCH! “Great job.” Ah, that feels better.

I recently spoke to a group that I had wanted to get in front of for a couple of years. It was thrilling to finally be there. I knew the group was likely not accustomed to experiential learning and so I took a risk. My gut told me: Do what you do best. I did, and I thought I’d done a great job presenting and providing engaging learning activities. The thing is, the feedback was mixed. On one end of the spectrum, “trite” and “superficial.” On the other end, “Great job, really relatable and engaging.” I have tried to absorb the truth of both and it has been ripping little tatters in my self-confidence.

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Assumptions – I was right, until …

SkywayFrom working with clients, I know that making bad assumptions is one of the biggest challenges we face both at work and in our personal lives. The cost of wrong assumptions can be more than we’re willing to absorb. If it won’t take much time to test an assumption, by all means, take the opportunity!

Then get ready for reality to slap you in the face. To illustrate, I offer the following autobiographical event. Read more

5 Lessons You Learn Stumbling Up Africa’s Tallest Mountain

mountain2A few years back and chilled from head to toe, I stared out at a sunrise from the rooftop of Africa. Towering 19,340 feet over flat, arid plains, Mt. Kilimanjaro is the highest point on the African continent. From this vantage point, I looked out over the largest area of the Earth’s surface possible in one view.

I’d traveled to Tanzania alone to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, joining three other Americans I had not met prior to the trip. Only two of us made it Read more

Four Steps to Reacting Constructively

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Our colleague is impossible to work with. Our husband can’t remember to put the clothes in the dryer and it drives us crazy. We worry how we’ll pay both our mortgage and child’s college tuition this year.

When we want to be justifiably annoyed or throw our hands up, what other course of action can we take to prevent a downward spiral of negative thinking and behavior? Read more

Mindful Leadership Will Change The Workplace. Are You Ready?

mindfulnessAre you ready for some long-term fixes to today’s workplace problems? Fasten your transcendental seat belts and get ready to enter the mindfulness zone.

Last fall I spent a day on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus listening to three experts in the areas of mindfulness and leadership: Bill George, Dr. Richard Davidson, and Roshi Joan Halifax. The topic was specifically the intersection of these two topics: mindful leadership. Read more

Fix a Problem Today

Lucille_Ball_executive_coachingMost of my coaching clients come to me to remove roadblocks that stand in their way. It’s easy to learn to live with problems when we can’t see clear solutions. It’s called adapting and is a positive coping skill. AND it also means that we don’t get to move forward towards our goal.

With the downturn in jobs from the recession, most folks who have a job are willing to put up with a lot of stress and problems at work because it’s “the new norm” in hard-hit companies. Unfortunately, playing Lucy on the chocolate factory line will only work for so long (sitcom: I Love Lucy). Read more

Leaders, Your Brains Are Primed For This

leadership_generosityAs a leader, you probably know the feeling of spending all day in meetings and then feeling drained. Once we reach that state, we typically have nothing left to give. Unfortunately, feeling drained has become the norm for many leaders.

While “extremely busy” may earn us a badge in our culture, at the end of the day, it’s damaging; not only do we suffer personally, but our leadership suffers. We can’t do anything well with limited mental capacity. Read more

Flex Your Positive Leadership Muscle

ladderPositive psychology has arrived in the world of organizational leadership.

This field of science and its application to the real world started with the premise: If we can study what’s wrong with people, why can’t we study what’s right with people?

We now have a scientific foothold on the factors related to flourishing as well as those related to languishing.

People who flourish are the force behind flourishing, innovative, and productive organizations. Successful organizations are those whose employees are engaged, creative, and satisfied with themselves and the world. Read more

Three Questions to Combat the Fear of Changing Jobs

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Too many of the people I know are dissatisfied with their jobs. Are you also one of these people? Have you thought about changing jobs but imagine that the risk is too great?

What we fear stops us. And what we fear is often blown out of proportion.

It’s time to take a realistic look at your situation and let the goblins rest for a while.

Here are three questions to ask yourself. Read more